Financial forecast

This page summarises Eurobodalla Shire Council's current financial challenges and service delivery plans now and into the future.

  • Page last updated: July 2024

Latest news: July 2024

Our work plan and budget for 2024-25 was adopted at the June 2024 Council Meeting. The community had an opportunity to provide feedback on the draft, and three community briefings were hosted by the General Manager and Finance Director during May.


Many councils around NSW are in financial trouble, with 17 applying for a special rate variation in 2023 and nine in 2024.

Eurobodalla Council has not applied for a special variation, but - like many councils across the state - our general fund is facing ongoing operating deficits.

The general fund delivers the majority of Council's services to the community, apart from water, sewer and waste. For some years, Council’s general fund has cost more on day-to-day basis than the revenue it collects.

At the start of 2023, the projected deficit was a $14M shortfall. Work undertaken to date to address these challenges now forecasts the deficit falling to $8.3M in the proposed 2024-25 plan.

Related strategies

A Finance Strategy with 12 actions was developed to define a path to financial sustainability, adopted by Council in December 2023.

Our Grants Strategy outlines 12 prioritised actions aligned with Council’s Finance Strategy 2024-2028 and its finance-led and delivery-focused approach. The Grants Strategy was adopted by Council in April 2024.

Our approach to grant funding

We are grateful for the NSW Government grants that have allowed us to build new infrastructure for the community - especially after fires and floods - but the time has come to look carefully at our approach to seeking grants.

  • Going forward, we will be more strategic about the grants we pursue.
  • Grants should pay for work already in our plans, not add more work on top.
  • This is how we will use funds to cover projected expenses, and hopefully avoid service reductions or having to pursue special rate variations in the future.
  • A grants strategy was adopted by Council in April 2024 to support this approach.
  • Eurobodalla Shire Council Grants Strategy 2024-28 (900.8 KB)

What has happened so far

Council's General Manager Warwick Winn sought a financial health check in his first weeks on the job in late 2022. This identified large future deficits, current debt, and a work program that is too large to manage.

We are a medium-sized council trying to do the work of a large council, and that is not sustainable. Instead, councillors and senior staff understand that responsible and decisive actions are needed now to try and avoid special rate rises or service reductions in the future.


  • In March 2023, councillors and senior staff attended a strategic workshop to review the financial situation and identify a path forward for the shire. Councillors continue to be briefed regularly on financial matters.
  • Initially, we reduced the 2023-24 financial year’s general fund projected operating deficit from $14M to $11M by reprioritising and staging our work plan and by using grant funds to support already programmed works and services. In the years ahead, we will propose reducing our capital works program to focus on maintaining and renewing existing assets like roads, public toilets, and recreation facilities.
  • We prepared a finance strategy that will see us achieve long term financial sustainability by living within our means, with 12 key actions. The strategy was adopted by Council in December 2023, followed in April by an accompanying grants strategy.
  • In May 2023, we hosted three presentations for community members to hear from General Manager Warwick Winn and Director of Finance Stephanie Speedy about Council's current and future financial challenges while the draft work plan was on public exhibition.
  • In late 2023, we undertook a budget reset process; all areas of Council examined operations and the cost of delivering existing services to identify where efficiencies could be made for the 2024-25 financial year onwards.
  • Service modifications proposed from the budget reset process include revised opening hours at the Bay Pavilions and the Moruya Library and Basil Sellers Exhibition Centre, along with a more targeted, prioritised asset renewal and road  maintenance program, and a modified mowing schedule for low use locations within the shire.


  • In April 2024, we hosted three community information sessions to explain the Finance Strategy and Council's actions to date. At these sessions, our General Manager and Finance Director shared information about our current financial challenges, and changes and savings we have identified so far.
  • From Wednesday 1 to Tuesday 28 May, our draft 2024-25 operational plan was on public exhibition for community feedback. The draft operational plan forecast the general fund deficit reducing to $8.3M, reflecting the efforts to date to become more financially resilient.
  • In May 2024, we hosted three more community information sessions at the libraries while our 2024-25 draft operational plan was on exhibition. At these sessions, our General Manager and Finance Director gave an update on our financial situation, with a focus on the draft 2024-25 budget and works program.
  • Staff and councillors reviewed feedback we received during the public exhibition before the 2024-25 operational plan and budget was adopted at the June 2024 Council Meeting.

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