Budget set to propel Penrith into the future

Budget set to propel Penrith into the future

Monday, 11 July 2022

The Penrith Local Government Area is undergoing a period of major transformation and Penrith City Council’s latest budget highlights the importance of creating a liveable, connected, active, accessible, and sustainable City for the future.

Council presented a balanced budget of just over $384 million at the June Ordinary Meeting with $153 million set aside for Capital Works. The 2022-23 Penrith City Council Operational Plan was endorsed as part of a suite of documents which included the Delivery Program 2022-26.

Penrith Mayor Tricia Hitchen thanked residents for taking part in the community consultation process which assists in preparing a well-rounded budget as Council aligned its vision with the overarching needs of the City.

“Council is pleased to share our latest Budget which is far-reaching, yet practical in terms of scope; we have factored in everything from critical road upgrades and creating local job opportunities to sprucing up playgrounds and enhancing entertainment facilities,” Cr Hitchen said.

“We are thrilled to be able to contribute significant funding for transformative projects that are under construction or nearing completion. These will bring our vision for the City to life as more people call the Penrith Local Government Area (LGA) home and we move towards a more liveable, sustainable and connected future,” she said.

The Budget will enable Council to deliver multi-million-dollar projects over the 2022-23 period including the much-anticipated Regatta Park upgrade, due for completion at the end of 2022, and the City Park, slated for completion early next year.

With a focus on green spaces and places for recreation, Council has budgeted $4.12 million for the Harold Corr Athletics Track upgrade – the City’s first athletics precinct featuring a synthetic surface – as well as $12.9 million for the planned 32-hectare Gipps Street Recreation Precinct.

As one of the focus areas in Council’s Delivery Program 2022-26 is growing the local economy, Council’s Budget references $42.5 million for the Emu Plains Employment Precinct. The Old Bathurst Road site is set to generate 300-350 ongoing jobs and will inject an estimated $36.4 million annually into the local economy.

Council also remains committed to creating a more sustainable tomorrow and has allocated close to $40,000 for tree planting programs under the Cooling the City Strategy rollout, with a further $1.19 million boost for Council’s Nursery and Bushcare initiatives.

Community-focused projects are accounted for in the Budget, such as the annual Penrith Mayoral Challenge ($363,825) which sees young people co-design a park in their neighbourhood, and the continuation of Village Café ($72,553), an opportunity for members of the community to reconnect and access services.

Council currently has 44 childcare educational services across the LGA as well as the popular Mobile Playvan service. With more than 4,000 enrolled in our Children’s Services, Council is reinvesting around $30 million in the 2022-23 period. That figure will allow for crucial building and playground upgrades.

Vital community upgrades will also be funded through the Budget, with $16.4 million set aside for Roads Asset Renewal works, $3.96 million for Parks Asset Renewal works, and $8.9 million for Building Asset Renewal works, as well as $915,000 for Council’s Path Paving Program and $85,000 for its Bus Shelter Program.

The Penrith LGA has a vast footprint and Council is committed to regular upkeep of public spaces with $17 million set aside in funding.

In the 2022-23 period, Council plans to reinvest $3.27 million in its aquatic and leisure services (Ripples) and a further $644,000 in its library services.

Following community feedback, Council will put $125,000 towards enhancing the experience for patrons at The Joan through improved lighting and seating upgrades.

“The Penrith LGA’s population projection for 2036 is 289,142 people and with the Western Sydney (Nancy-Bird Walton) Airport under construction on Penrith’s border and associated transport links set to connect St Marys directly to the airport and aerotropolis, the time to transform our growing City is now,” Cr Hitchen said.

“Council’s Budget for the 2022-23 period addresses the six key focus areas identified in our 2022-26 Delivery Program and supports Council in our pursuit of making this City a place where people want to live, work and play.

“We look forward to meeting community needs and continuing to transform the City over the coming 12-month period.”

To read the 2022-23 Penrith City Council Operational Plan, visit penrith.city/strategic-planning

Information contained within this news release was correct as at Monday, 11 July 2022.