Planning for the Future to Create Intergenerational Equity

Published on 17 May 2024

Wingecarribee Water Treatment Plant

In response to the evolving demands of our unique region, Wingecarribee Shire Council, is proposing as part of the draft 2024/2025 financial year increases in water and sewer rates to ensure that sufficient funds are collected to fund future upgrades.

This means that future generations are not burdened with the full cost of this infrastructure – providing intergenerational equity.

Water and sewer rate increases were outlined in Wingecarribee Shire Council’s Draft Operational Plan and Budget currently on public exhibition this month.  

To ensure sustained revenue for operational needs and future infrastructure enhancements, water rates are proposed to increase by 7%. Lisa Miscamble, council’s General Manager emphasised, "This increase is also attributable to water rates not being increased between 2016/17 – 2019/20 to offset the increase of the Special Rate Variation relating to Council’s General Fund rate increase."

The proposal to adjust rates beyond inflation was underscored by the necessity to maintain long-term financial sustainability. It is crucial to finance vital improvements to our water and sewer systems, especially the Moss Vale and Bowral Sewage Treatment Plants, which are operating at full capacity. These upgrades are essential to sustain dependable service amidst the increasing population in our region. Although obtaining a $31 million grant for the STP upgrades alleviated some of the financial pressure, certain adjustments remain unavoidable.

“This increase will ensure that Council can fund future infrastructure renewal and future loan repayments in a financially sustainable manner as outlined in Council’s Long Term Financial Plan," said Karin Targa, Council’s Director Service and Project Delivery.

Through these measures, Wingecarribee Shire Council is proactively preparing to meet the future needs of the community while ensuring equitable financial burden-sharing across generations.