Putting together a budget that delivers the services our community values whilst balancing increasing cost pressures facing local Councils is no easy task. It takes months of brainstorming, briefings and discussions to get the balance right.
This year the City will be inviting the community to have their say in the development of its 2019/20 operating budget. The trial aims to give the community a better understanding of the budget process and is the first of its kind in the metropolitan areas.
The community will be invited to prioritise all of the City's services using an online budget allocator tool. Participants will be asked to increase, decrease, or no make change to each of the City's current service areas, and balance the cost implications of each decision. From here, a community panel will be formed to deliberate on the budget in more detail. Council will then consider recommendations from the panel in putting together its 2019/20 budget.
This is a completely new approach for the City of Bayswater, but I'm confident the community will embrace the opportunity to give input on what is the most difficult decision of Council – developing a budget that delivers great outcomes while keeping rates as low as possible.
Councillor Chris Cornish