Although the cemeteries project has languished under Labor, after continued pressure from the Waverley Liberals we now have a workable Business Plan.
The Plan identifies opportunities to create additional niche walls and ash-scatter gardens within the existing fabric of the cemeteries along with burial plots identified during the completed mapping process commenced during the Liberal Mayoralty. A new marketing program & website will be developed to support operations.
However, there are outstanding issues of funding that still need to be addressed. Part of Council’s 2011 rate rise was to ensure funding certainty for the Cemetery Reserve yet this was inexplicably stopped. The Labor/Greens Council voted against an investigation into this matter in 2020. They also failed to support refunding more than $700k taken from the Cemetery Reserve for coastal walk remediation.
The Waverley Liberals are committed to the long-term operational future of our cemeteries unlike Labor, who tried in 2011 to investigate turning the cemeteries into memorial parks. Allowing the cemeteries to fall into disrepair without sustainable funding must not be allowed to continue.
The Waverley Liberals Mayoralty 2012-17 left Council in an excellent financial position. Four years on and Waverley’s financial future is now at stake with reserves dropping.
Council’s Reserves are designed to provide security and opportunity for significant urgent projects as yet unfunded, such as improvements to systems, staff accommodation and major road infrastructure.
But this is now at risk as not only has Labor overspent, they’ve looted our Long-Term Reserves, to the extent that funds may be precarious in FY23/24. Interestingly, Council’s Internal Audit Committee have repeatedly asked for a detailed analysis and use of Council’s Reserves.
Labor’s bad financial management led to a rate rise in 2011. The Waverley Liberals will not burden residents and ratepayers with yet another rate rise. Instead, we will bring back stable and responsible management of Council Budgets to meet community expectations.