Paving, the way for protest


PLANS to build footpaths with costs being part-charged to property owners are a sure fire way of attracting submissions and petitions addressed to Mornington Peninsula Shire.

In the latest round of footpath special charge schemes approved by the shire objectors were mostly losers, although one case has proved costly to the shire.

A “typographical error” has seen a 42 per cent blowout in the cost of a footpath in South Rd, Rosebud.

Under the council’s own rules, any cost variation above five per cent has to be paid by the shire and cannot be passed on to contributors to the special charge scheme. However, such increases are ultimately charged to all ratepayers, council’s main source of revenue.

The South Rd footpath was a 25-75 per cent split between council and property owners and the $56,715 mistake will be picked up by the shire.

Councillors were wrongly told that the cost would be $135,000 when the final bill was $191,715.

“The higher actual cost is primarily due to a typographical error in earlier reports to council,” infrastructure strategy project manager Jeremy Grieve said in a report to council’s 14 December meeting.

At McCrae, Mr Grieve said a 140-signature petition opposing a footpath being built in Coburn Av was received nearly four months after the closing date was based on a point of law that did not apply to the scheme.

Council decided to go ahead with the $410,820 scheme, with $271,141 being levied among 149 properties judged to benefit from its completion.

Other footpath schemes given the go ahead by council include Coppin Rd, Sorrento, for $371,130 with property owners to pay $185,565.

In Dromana ratepayers in Beach and Gibson streets will pay $118,117 of the $56,210 cost and in Wandella Rd, Mornington they will pay $85,200 of $125,000.

In Keogh St, Rosebud and Elizabeth St, Mornington ratepayers are being charged extra because the thickness of concrete was increased from 75 millimetres “to 125 millimetres due to an amendment to the footpath construction standards to better reflect current strength requirements”, Mr Grieve said in his report. 

First published in the Mornington News – 22 December 2015


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