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Council achieves positive financial position

By Mark Beale

Whitsunday Regional Council today received the Credit Review prepared by Queensland Treasury Corporation (QTC) for 2014 which has rated Council weak with a positive outlook, giving Council the best financial position since amalgamation.

Mayor Jenny Whitney said this makes the difficult decisions and hard work of the last couple of years worthwhile and sets the Whitsunday region up for a prosperous economic future. “The QTC report notes the prior reviews they have conducted of Council including the 2013 very weak rating with a negative outlook, 2010 Financial Sustainability Review weak with developing outlook, 2007 Whitsunday Shire Council moderate with developing outlook, 2007 Bowen Shire Council weak with developing outlook,” she said.

“The results received by Council today of a weak rating with positive outlook are in stark contrast to the situation we had to deal with just over two years ago.

“I’m very pleased to advise that the uncertainty and difficulties we faced at that time are behind us all and we can look forward to a positive future for the organisation and the community.

“QTC has noted Council’s improved operating position and a strong focus on implementing the continued necessary actions to repair the weak liquidity position identified in January 2013.

“QTC also flagged that an upgrade in the rating to moderate could occur in the future if Council’s operating position continues to improve, debt is further reduced and Council achieves operating surpluses as presented in Council’s forecast.

“Council is pleased that the December Budget Review released last month showed Council will reduce debt by $3 million more than forecast at the start of the 2014-15 financial year.

“The December Budget Review also showed the operating surplus for the end of 2014-15 is now forecast to be $7.1 million, which is an excellent result for Council.

“Council will continue to work together to ensure financial responsibility for our ratepayers, region, community and the organisation, it is through this continued financial stability that we can positively grow our region’s economy.

“I would like to thank the local community for their ongoing support in helping Council to address this financial situation.

“Into the future Council will now be able to focus on delivering an increased level of service for our community.

“I would also like to thank Councillors and Council staff for making the hard decisions over the last two years, which we now see benefiting our community,” she said.

The Queensland Treasury Corporation Whitsunday Regional Council Credit Review January 2015 can be viewed in full on Council’s website http://www.whitsunday.qld.gov.au/budgets

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