Labor rips $6.3 million out of Strathbogie Shire
22 May 2015
Labor has ripped a $6.3 million dollar hole in Strathbogie Shire’s budget, Member for Euroa and Deputy Leader of The Nationals Steph Ryan said today.
Ms Ryan said Strathbogie Shire would be one of the worst to suffer under Labor’s State Budget, announced last week.
“A one per cent rate rise in Strathbogie equates to just $100,000,” Ms Ryan said.
“To plug the gaping hole left by Labor’s first budget, rates would need to rise by 16 per cent.
“The Shire’s population base simply cannot afford that kind of increase.
“The alternative council is left with is to run down the council asset base and to stop maintaining roads and other important infrastructure.
“The Labor Government has left council with a poison pill.”
Ms Ryan said in addition to scrapping the $160 million Country Roads and Bridges Program, Labor had slashed the roads asset management budget by almost 10 per cent.
“For a shire like Strathbogie which has 135 bridges, 372 major culverts and 2,246 kilometres of road network to maintain, this is disastrous,” Ms Ryan said.
“The Local Government Infrastructure Program and Regional Living Expo have also been discontinued.”
Labor is also investing staggeringly little into regional infrastructure.
“A mere 2.9 per cent of infrastructure spending in this year’s Budget is being invested into regional Victoria, Ms Ryan said.
“That 2.9 per cent includes Geelong and other regional cities.
“This complete lack of regard for country Victorians further reinforces the fact that Labor only care about you if you live in Melbourne.”