Seven-year program to boost shire

By PETER CATON

TWEED Shire Council has opened the door for residents to have their say on a $133 million spending spree to boost infrastructure in the region over the next seven years.

Tweed Shire Council unveiled a shire-wide seven-year infrastructure plan yesterday, to be funded by a six per cent increase in council rates every year.

The council said every resident would be sent a 20-page special edition of the Tweed Link newsletter, which outlines the proposed rate increases and asks for opinions on infrastructure priorities. It is the biggest and most ambitious works program proposed by the council and the first time it has embarked on a sevenyear plan for the shire's infrastructure needs.

The council's acting general manager Mike Rayner said many of the projects had been worked out over the past five years.

However, he said council did not have the funds to proceed with them.

Chief administrator Garry Payne said the Tweed had "relatively low rates coupled with high community expectations".

He said conservative population growth estimates also suggested the Tweed population would grow by an extra 40,000 people in the next 10 years requiring better services.

On top of the request to 35,000 householders to fill out a survey form in the council newsletter, more than 300 householders can also expect a phone call seeking their reaction to the plan.

A detailed list of proposed works is available on the council's website and at council offices and libraries.



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