06/06/2008 - 10:51

Increase revenue in City of Perth budget

06/06/2008 - 10:51

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The City of Perth has budgeted a revenue increase of 11.7 per cent for fiscal 2009 as expenditure on capital projects rise.

Increase revenue in City of Perth budget

The City of Perth has budgeted a revenue increase of 11.7 per cent for fiscal 2009 as expenditure on capital projects rise.

A copy of the statement is pasted below:

Perth's status as a rapidly growing capital city in an increasingly globalised environment is reflected in the City of Perth Council's annual Budget.

Lord Mayor Lisa Scaffidi says the Budget includes a substantial capital expenditure program for 2008/09 and also positions the City to undertake much needed precinct, streetscape and capital upgrade developments into the future.

Expenditure on capital projects has been budgeted at $57.5 million, up from $46.4 million in last year's Budget.

Major initiatives to be undertaken this coming year include:

-$9.1 million for streetscape and malls enhancement, including the city's central civic meeting point, Forrest Place.
-$5.9 million for refurbishment of the walkways around Forrest Chase to boost the appeal and functionality of the city's retail heart adjacent to Forrest Place.
-$5.6 million to progress construction of the Northbridge Piazza.
-$5.1 million for redevelopment of the Elder Street Car Park, increasing its capacity to a multi-storey facility with more than 1120 car bays, 40 motorcycle bays as well as bicycle parking facilities.
-$3.4 million to modernise and expand the retail concourse at the central City Railway Station.
-$2.8 million for loading dock space at the new Century City retail development to better service Hay Street Mall retailers. This will reduce the need for delivery trucks to enter malls and enable better logistics within the central retail area.

The Council has budgeted for total revenue (including capital grants) of $135.5 million, an increase of 11.7 per cent over 2007/08.

Total rate revenue increases have been contained to an overall average of 3.25 per cent, in line with the forecast CPI increase.

The City has a differential rating structure aimed at achieving a fair and equitable distribution of rates within each category of land according to the demands made on city services.

Every three years, Landgate (a State Government agency) reviews all property valuations and adjusts them generally on the basis of the gross rental values. During this budget year, the gross rental value is based on valuations applicable at 1 August 2006 and this has generally resulted in increases in valuations in the range of 30% to 50%. However, about 54% of ratepayers will have a rate increase of no more than 5% and the remaining 46% will experience increases in excess of 5%, mainly as a result of significantly higher gross rental values applying to their properties.

(The City has significantly reduced its rate in the dollar downward to ensure that it collects no more than its required increase in rate revenue of 3.25% overall.)

The rate-relief scheme for newly developed residential properties in the inner city will continue, as will a 10 per cent rate rebate scheme for heritage-listed properties.

Parking fees will increase slightly to take into account the proposed increase in the Central Perth Parking Policy levy which the City of Perth pays to the State Government for each bay (on and off-street) that it operates.

The hourly rate across all City of Perth car parks will increase by 10 cents from July 1 and the daily rate by $1, except for inner-city short-stay parks which will rise by $2 per day to discourage long-stay parking. Long-stay parkers are encouraged to use cheaper car parks farther out from the city centre and to take advantage of free public transport.

Ms Scaffidi said the City's parking rates were competitive with private providers and were much lower in comparison with other capital cities.

The Lord Mayor said the City of Perth was financially strong and well placed to fund major longer-term projects, including Northbridge Link, the proposed East Perth Community Centre, Northbridge Piazza and foreshore irrigation upgrades, not to mention several other initiatives being proposed for the capital city at this busy time.

No significant new borrowings are planned and investment return forecasts have been conservative, taking into account current market volatility.

The City of Perth is leading best practice in local government in placing its budget to the ratepayers and stakeholders of the city in early June. This will enable planning for new projects to be finalised prior to 1 July 2008 with the objective, where appropriate, for tenders and procurement to be initiated as soon as possible.

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

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