Council runs surplus, hikes Celtic festival tickets

Glen Innes' council is back in the black, recording a tiny operating surplus for 2019, as councilors resolved to increase the price of a ticket to the Celtic Festival for locals.

Figures released last week show the Glen Innes Severn council has returned to surplus of $75,000 after running a $1 million deficit last financial year, according to its audited annual financial statement.

The council managed to claw its way back into the black off the back of an increase in rates and annual charges, grants and contributions.

Council was able to levy $326,000 of additional rates revenue despite the worst drought in the history of the region and an increase in rates underpayment; 10 per cent of rates notices are outstanding this year.

Council auditor Geoff Allen told councilors at last Thursday's meeting the shire is in a sound and stable financial position.

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Council resolved at the same meeting to slash the discount for locals of a ticket to the Celtic Festival, with a one-day ticket now pegged at $25.

Residents of the entire 'New England High Country' will now receive a discount, and the new pricing scheme will also introduce an early bird discount. Council hopes the increase in charges will help the festival break even.

The council also released its annual animal attack statistics last week. In 2018/19, two dogs were declared dangerous, with the ranger investigating two reported dog attacks and thirty nuisance complaints.

Two dogs were declared dangerous, with zero declared menacing, and no nuisance orders issued for the year.

The Glen Innes Severn council impounded 159 dogs and 46 cats this year to September.