Who will? Williams Will

Affordable Frills on Back to Basics Budget

Speaking to a capacity crowd of 350 at the Cleveland RSL, Karen Williams outlined her 10 year financial plan and vision for Redlands as she launched her campaign for mayor. “Over the last 4 years Redland rates rose almost 5 times faster than inflation while debt has increased more than 50% from $41M to $67M with projections showing it at $101M by 2014/15." “To get Redlands back on track to being the jewel of south east Queensland we need to get our financial situation under control by getting back to basics." “Our major task is to tame costs through higher productivity and greater efficiency and cutting government red tape.” Cr Williams said that while council currently has an operating deficit she will return it to a surplus of $1.386M by 2013/14. “While this is a small surplus it will be a huge achievement as council is currently running a $20M operating deficit." “Over the ten years of the plan I will also cut proposed debt per capita from $547 to $369.” Cr Williams said that her plans were totally costed and had been compiled by Ray Turner, former General Manager and Chief Financial Officer of Redland City Council. “You can be sure this plan adds up.” Ms Williams said that because of her more careful approach she was able to make a number of modest promises. These included:
  • Instituting a state of the art street side pickup to complement her promise to dump tip fees
  • A freeze on commercial rates for up to two years
  • A moratorium on timed parking in the Cleveland CBD
Cr Williams also flagged redevelopment of the recently acquired CSIRO site at Toondah Harbour for a tourism accommodation and convention centre as an example of what vision and good financial management could deliver. “Redlands wants and deserves to be a tourist destination and the current council has just acquired this waterfront site at the gateway to Moreton Bay." “I would be prepared to look at waiving infrastructure charges and putting the land that we already own into a deal with a commercial operator in return for guaranteed long-term income and no risk in order to make this happen.” Cr Williams concluded her speech by telling supporters that they needed to change the council as well as electing her as mayor. “I’ve put forward a 'Back to Basics' 6 point plan, and 16 of the candidates contesting the election have endorsed that plan." “I’m urging you to support those candidates as we need a supportive council to get Redlands back on track." “If your local councillor doesn’t change, then the council won’t either.”

Posted on 17 Apr 2012

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