Shire of Murray releases budget plans and goals

PIC: Shire of Murray

The Shire of Murray Council has adopted its 2023/24 budget, highlighting a number of major projects and services in store for the region.

Through the $46.9 million budget, the Shire will focus on health, economic development, tourism development and environmental sustainability.

Shire President David Bolt said the budget will allow the Shire to deliver essential ratepayer services, while also maintaining facilities and investing in the future. 

“We will be investing $14,720,462 in sport and recreation through the Murray Aquatic and Leisure Centre, Murray Library, green spaces and community facilities such as a cricket and hockey pavilion, playgrounds and youth skate/BMX parks,” Councillor Bolt said.

“There will be a $3,107,350 investment in health, welfare and community safety, $21,278,999 in roads, footpaths, bridges and drainage, and $5,783,944 in waste management and community amenities.

"We have also committed $12,032,382 in economic development and tourism, there’s a $1,611,286 investment in public art, festivals and events, and maintenance of built and natural heritage.

“The budget will also progress a number of major projects. We will recreate a regional icon with the redevelopment of the Exchange Hotel, invest in new boating facilities at Wharf Cove, open a new community centre in Ravenswood, and install new, modern lighting at Sir Ross McLarty Oval.”

As part of the budget, Council has adopted a rate increase of 4.5 percent which is about a $68 increase for the average ratepayer. 

Rates account for 43 per cent of the Shire’s revenue, with the gap being funded mainly through grants and contributions, and other fees and charges.

“Seeking funding through other sources eases pressure on rates, without compromising on the Shire’s needs,” Councillor Bolt said.

“Community expectations are always at the forefront of Council decisions. With a budget that is aligned closely to our Council Plan, we have great confidence we are investing appropriately in community aspirations.” 

Major projects:
• The Exchange Hotel: $7,582,582 to recreate a regional icon and destination hospitality venue
• Wharf Cove boating facilities: $671,338 investment in four new floating finger jetties
• Corio Road Transfer Station: $1,500,000 investment to reduce waste transport costs
• St John’s Church: $335,000 investment in public ablution facilities
• Sir Ross McLarty Oval: $200,000 investment for modern LED lighting
• Lovegrove Sports Pavilion: $2,835,412 to complete shared facilities that will be home to cricket 
and hockey clubs
• Ravenswood Community Centre: $573,283 investment to finalise and open the facility

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