Next step on office centralisation project

Published on 08 February 2019

Office relocation Biripi Way.JPG

A new cost benefit analysis on the Biripi Way project will be commissioned by MidCoast Council following a resolution at this week's Council meeting.

At Wednesday’s ordinary Council meeting a report on the financing of the project to consolidate administrative functions in Taree and Forster to a single location was considered.

This followed the draft financing strategy for the $20 million head office relocation being placed on public exhibition for a six week period, during November-December 2018, to allow the community to provide input regarding the proposed methodology for funding the project.

The report provided Councillors with information on the outcome of the community consultation, a peer review of the draft financing strategy and the probity advisor’s report.

Council resolved to note the Council report and commissioned a new cost benefit analysis to assess the latest costs and benefits associated with the purchase and fit-out of the building, for use as a single site administrative office for MidCoast Council, compared to the campus model.

Council staff are now working to implement the outcome of the meeting and put in place the actions outlined in the resolution.

This will include undertaking Council’s normal procurement processes to appoint an independent third party expert to commission the new cost benefit analysis.

It is anticipated this report will go back to Councillors for consideration in April.

For a copy of the reports considered by Councillors at the 6 February ordinary meeting of Council go to www.midcoast.nsw.gov.au/meetings

For further information on the project go to  www.midcoast.nsw.gov.au/headoffice

The full resolution of the meeting was as follows:

That Council

1.  Note the report

2. Commission a new cost benefit analysis to assess the latest costs and benefits associated with the purchase and fit-out of 2 Biripi Way for use as a single site administrative office for MidCoast Council compared to the campus model.

The CBA should:

·        a) use the latest relevant property valuations and

·        b) be based on the most recent financing strategy which proposed a mix of loan, cash from savings and cash from property sales and

·        c) exclude all subjective savings associated with staff ''culture change'' and concentrate on actual realisable savings associated with the new work environment

3. The CBA should be prepared by an independent third party expert

4. The resulting report should be provided to Council in April

5. Council should then identify the best use of the projected savings, if any, from the consolidation of office services for the benefit of the community.

6. If necessary pay for the new or revised CBS from the unused funds carried forward from 2017-18 allocated for Councillor training.