Central Coast Council at its Ordinary Meeting of 8 February 2020 resolved to place the draft revised Long Term Financial Plan (LTFP) on public exhibition. This Plan is for the General Fund only, which is the Fund impacted by the proposed Special Variation (SV) rate increase and where the restricted borrowing took place.
The Local Government Act 1989 requires Councils to exercise sound financial management in managing their affairs. A key component of sound financial management is the preparation of longer term financial strategies, plans and budgets.
The LTFP is the key ten-year financial planning document that contains a series of financial strategies and accompanying performance indicators that Council considers when making significant decisions about resource allocation.
Council’s LTFP has been revised to show the following three scenarios:
- No rate rise - 2% rate peg only
- Option 1 Temporary Fix Option – 10% SV (including rate peg of 2%)
- Option 2 – Securing Your Future Option – 15% SV (including rate peg of 2%)
A number of informed assumptions have been made in the LTFP including:
- There will be a reduction in staff costs to headcount levels at amalgamation and increases moving forward are for award and legislated superannuation guarantee increases
- A reduction in materials and contracts with increases moving forward capped at 0.5% as this includes efficiencies and containment of costs
- Infrastructure spending will remain at the same level as is funded by depreciation and has been put in place for 2020-21
- Council will manage and monitor costs and find further efficiency and productivity gains.
It is clear from the modelling that without a 15% special variation, Council will not be financially sustainable and will be unable to repay the restricted funds which were not spent with the necessary authorisations. With a 15% special variation, Council will be able to repay $100M within ten years by delivering modest budget surpluses.
In normal circumstances, Council’s LTFP would have highlighted the need for a special rate variation and consultation would have occurred in accordance with Council’s usual process for Integrated Planning and Reporting documents. Council is in a unique financial situation and as a result, it has been necessary to review the LTFP at the same time as a potential SV.
The Long Term Financial Plan shows Council’s forecast position both with and without a potential SV.
Submissions addressed to the Acting Chief Executive Officer (Mr Rik Hart) were accepted between 9 February and 9 March 2021. via:
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Post: PO Box 20, Wyong NSW 2259
- Post: PO Box 21, Gosford, NSW 2250
- Online: submission form (now closed)