Asset management 'vital'

When a draft budget is released most of the talk is centred on rates and capital works.

But the importance of asset management can not be underestimated according to asset engineer John Sacco and Council CEO Ian Nicholls. Council’s total infrastructure assets are worth $154,263,000 and include roads, bridges, footpaths, drainage, parks and waste disposal facilities.

“In simple terms, it is about managing what assets we already have and planning for the future,” Mr Sacco said.

“Maintaining, renewing and upgrading our assets are an extremely important aspect of our operations. It ensures that the life of our assets is maximised and that we continue to deliver a safe service to the community.”

Council allocated $1,868,000 towards maintaining, $1,873,000 to renewing and $891,000 to upgrading assets in the draft budget. Two asset upgrade projects to gain funding in the draft budget are the partial sealing of Stanley Road between Myrtleford and Beechworth ($322,000) and the partial sealing of Back Germantown Road ($122,000) in Bright.

Mr Nicholls said the Stanley Road project would improve access to the shire.

“By improving access to the shire we enable a boost to tourism almost straight away,” he said.

“People that may not have visited the shire in the past because of the road may make it a frequent trip. This will not only boost our economy but the improved roads will reduce dust and increase road safety. Ensuring public safety is extremely important. Asset management helps us to ensure our shire remains a great place to live and visit.”

Mr Nicholls added that their seemed to be a lack of understanding of what Council’s assets are and of there importance.

“Asset management is a vital part of our operations because it helps ensure the ongoing sustainability of the Alpine Shire,” he said.

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