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Community & Business

20 June, 2023

Council’s quarterly budget review

Financial statements and money can say a lot. At the February ordinary meeting, Gilgandra Shire Council (GSC) discussed variances to the original estimates for the 2022/23 financial year budget.

These estimates were presented in the council’s most recent quarterly budget review (QBR).

The review indicates that the 2022 end of year result for the budget was a surplus of $1,035,479. This is an increase of $746,379 from the original budget estimate for the year. This is a great result for the bank balance of Gilgandra Shire Council and signifies that the finan- cial status of the council is in good health.

However, across the numerous services that the council provides there were some that ended the year in deficit. Cooee Lodge, Carlginda Enterprises and the Cooee Villa Units all returned losses for the year.

The original budget estimate for Cooee Lodge was a deficit of $118,418. The review however states that at the end of the year the actual deficit was $181,780. This is a worsening of $63,362. The council readily acknowl- edges that this result is unsatisfactory. Further unsatis-

factory results continued with Carlginda Enterprises experiencing a deficit of $38,041 and Cooee Villa Units a deficit of $18,744.

The Cooee Villa Units deficit is particularly difficult as the original budget estimate was for a surplus of $5,349.

Outlined in the business paper provided by council for their February meeting, are several reasons for the increase in losses for these services, particularly Cooee Lodge. The lodge has seen ongoing difficulties attract- ing permanent nursing staff which has meant an increased reliance on agency nursing staff. This reliance has resulted in an increase in expenses and wages to recruit and employ these staff members.

Despite the problems facing some aspects of the council organisation, the budget does show a healthy return on investments, manageable expenses and steady incomes across council utilities and services.

The next QBR will detail how these services are con- tinuing towards their the budget estimates for 2022/23 financial year. 

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