Financial sustainability within reach

27 October 2014

AlburyCity's Financial Statements for 2013-14 show that Council has achieved a $1.2M surplus before capital income.

The result is better than forecast and an improvement on the 2012-13 financial year. Council is another step towards achieving a balanced budget in General Fund for 2014-15.

The General Fund would have recorded a small deficit in 2013-14 if 50% of its financial assistance grants hadn't been received in advance.

The improved financial result can be attributed to an operating surplus being achieved in Council's water and sewer funds.

In addition to the overall operating surplus, Council accounted for capital income of $19.3 million which included the recognition of cash and in-kind developer contributions of $12.5 million and also the recognition of artwork previously donated to Council of $5.6 million.

Chair of Council's Finance and Administration Committee Cr David Thurley said the result is very promising, but there is more work to be done.

"This Council has made a long term commitment to manage our deficit and return AlburyCity back to a balanced budget. This is proof that we are on the right track and our work is delivering results."

"However, we need to be mindful of the financial challenges that face us in the future. The Federal Government's freeze on indexing the Financial Assistance Grants will leave a budget hole over the next four years that we will need to plan for."

"In addition to that, every year NSW councils absorb an estimated $520M in costs shifted from State and Federal governments on local government. That situation is not likely to change anytime soon so the pressure is on to maintain these good results."

The financial result comprises total operating income of $102M, operating expenditure of $101M and capital works of $27.5M.

AlburyCity's General Manager Frank Zaknich said expenditure containment and the ongoing Service and Efficiency Review has played a significant role in achieving the 2013-14 financial results.
"It's really pleasing that we've been able to deliver an operating surplus this year. The challenge is to make sure those surpluses remain sustainable into the future. It is further proof that Council's proactive steps to manage its deficit and improvements in the Four Year Delivery Program are starting to positively impact on our bottom line."

"Council has once again been proactive in managing its budget and expenditure while continuing work to maintain and improve the city's infrastructure. Council remains committed to continuous improvement and achieving value for money with every dollar spent. It will continue to investigate better ways of doing business as we continue our service and efficiency improvements across the organisation."

Residents can go to the AlburyCity website to view the financial statements and auditor's reports for the financial year ended 30 June 2014.