Council Welcomes the Findings of NRMA report
Posted on: 31.08.2017
The ‘Funding Local Roads’ report released today by the NRMA, has vindicated those Councils that have had to increase their rates to fund roads maintenance costs.Once again we have irrefutable evidence that NSW Councils, and therefore their ratepayers, are having to shoulder the burden of an enormous roads maintenance backlog which amounts to $1.96 billion across the State. Council welcomes the statements from NRMA Regional Director, Fiona Simson and agrees with the causes of the backlog.
Mayor, Judith Hannan said, “With over 840 kilometres of roads to maintain, Council needed to implement a responsible Long Term Financial Plan that could address Wollondilly’s growing infrastructure backlog.
“In July 2015, our Special Rate Variation (SRV) came into play, with a 10.8% p.a. increase in rates over 4 years. This was a tough decision for Council to make but absolutely necessary and the additional funds generated by the SRV are being invested directly back into our Infrastructure Assets, a majority of which is for the purpose of renewing our roads”.
NRMA have called on the State and Federal Governments to increase funding to support local roads and notes that Wollondilly Shire has one of the highest roads infrastructure backlogs - a massive $42.5m as at June 2016.
General Manager, Luke Johnson, said, “Council has already implemented a robust and responsible long term strategic approach to our asset management to address the infrastructure backlog that has built up over decades.
“The NRMA report should send a clear message to State and Federal governments that they need to take greater responsibility in addressing this critical issue. So we support the NRMA’s call for local government to receive a share of the fuel excise levy.
“Renewing our roads is not just a Council issue – it’s an issue for all of us as we know that better roads make us safer, improve our connectivity and are critical to productivity and economic prosperity”.