Show us the money

Hilltops Council Mayor Brian Ingram says the State Government has left a $2.3m shortfall in funding to meet the transition costs for the amalgamated council.

Shortfall: Cr Ingram said if the State Government does not fund the shortfall ratepayers may well have to. Picture: Craig Thomson.

Shortfall: Cr Ingram said if the State Government does not fund the shortfall ratepayers may well have to. Picture: Craig Thomson.

Cr Ingram said if the State Government does not fund the shortfall ratepayers may well have to.

"I intend to make it very clear to the Premier that the $5 million allocated to fund transition expenses has fallen well-short of what’s needed," he said. 

"The money has to come from somewhere, extra charges to the ratepayer or we have to cut a service somewhere, and as the new mayor, they are two things I don't want to do, so it's imperative that the state comes to the party with this.

"These costs have only been incurred because of the  NSW Government's Council amalgamation policy.

"Metropolitan councils got $10 million for transition costs, and here we are in the bush merging three councils over more than seven thousand square kilometres, and we are only getting $5 million, that is not right."

But National Party Candidate Cootamundra Steph Cooke said she met with Mayor Ingram and senior Council staff to better understand the problem from the Council's perspective.

"If elected I will address this as soon as possible with the Government so the Council may move forward with providing their services," she said.

Shooters Fishers and Farmers Party candidate Matt Stadtmiller said he had approached Government representatives with no response.

"I have written to former Cootamundra MP Katrina Hodgkinson, Premier Gladys Berejiklian, Goulburn MP Pru Goward, Minister for Local Government Gabrielle Upton and NSW Deputy Premier John Barilaro in July this year about this issue," he said.

"I've received no response and people want to know why the NSW Government is yet to provide the $2.3 million that they didn’t budget for in their forced Council merger.

"It's not good enough, the Government forced the amalgamation on us, and now they won't fund it properly."