City returns another surplus

22 Oct 2019

City of Newcastle has returned a sixth consecutive annual operating surplus.

Audited financial statements endorsed by Council tonight show City of Newcastle delivered a budget surplus of $9.4 million for the year 2018/19.

The financial statements also show the City registered operational income of $336.3 million and total operating expenses of $295.9 million.

“City of Newcastle continues on the path of financial sustainability, delivering a sixth consecutive budget surplus,” Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said.

“This compares favourably to a growing trend of budget deficits in local government and demonstrates that the City has the capacity to respond to rising service expectations and unforeseen events.

“Development and investment activity remain strong in Newcastle, with the total value of building approvals again topping $1 billion in 2018/19.

“Our record $91.6 million capital works program for 2018/19 is contributing to this growth, as we maintain heritage assets while revitalising and re-inventing our city.

“The works program delivered projects including popular playgrounds at Blackbutt’s Richley Reserve and the South Stockton Active Hub, plus upgrades to our local centres at Carrington and Beresfield.

“Meanwhile, tourism and visitation are at record numbers, bolstered by the success of the Newcastle 500 and growth in a wide range of events spanning sport, music, art and culture - many of which are supported by CN sponsorships and grants.

“From landmark infrastructure projects to local centre upgrades and flood mitigation works in Wallsend, we're improving the amenity, safety and sense of community right across the city.”

CEO Jeremy Bath said the City had met or exceeded all six financial performance ratios set by the NSW Office of Local Government (OLG).

“These benchmarks are a measure of financial sustainability and highlight the robust financial health of the City of Newcastle,” he said.

"The figures show ratepayers can be confident that we will continue to deliver high-quality services and projects in a financially responsible way,” he said.

The OLG manages a website that rate payers can use to track how their Council is faring compared to other local governments