Council has worked hard over the past few months to set its budget for the next financial year, striking a balance between an innovative works program and providing rates relief for the community.
Council provides a huge range of services for the community including street lighting, roads and footpaths, waste, community facilities and halls, parks and sportsfields, child care and preschools, leisure centres, libraries, contributions to emergency services, community grants to local not for profit groups, and much much more.
We do this while being proactive in managing our finances carefully. This has meant that Fairfield City Council has had some of the cheapest rates in Sydney.
We understand that family budgets are under a lot of pressure and it's important that we do what we can to support the community through these challenging times. That's why last week, councillors voted to reduce our domestic waste charge and suspended the stormwater levy, which will mean the majority of residents won't see an increase in their overall rates bill for 2020/21.
This means Council will have a $3 million deficit for the year but thanks to our strong financial position and very small debt, we will be able to absorb this cost without impacting services in these difficult times.
Council has also strengthened its hardship assistance program, to help any residents who are genuinely struggling to pay their rates due to COVID-19.
Council will continue with its innovative program of major projects and service delivery, meaning more jobs, more economic activity and important new infrastructure for the community.
These projects include a new grandstand and all-abilities playground at Fairfield Showground, a wave pool for Aquatopia water park, a new library and business hub for Fairfield, a new multi-storey car park for Cabramatta, and upgrades to Cabravale Leisure Centre.
We are proud that we have been able to limit the increases to rates while moving forward with our plan to improve our City's quality of life, and creating and supporting new jobs while steering the community through the COVID-19 pandemic. We are all in this together.