Wodonga Council's budget has been adopted one day late after Monday night's meeting was abandoned amidst technical issues.
The matter of whether the Zoom format of Monday's meeting was valid and consented to by councillors will return, with Cr Olga Quilty being invited to bring a notice of motion in July.
"Consent of the meeting wasn't asked for," she said during urgent business.
"I remember moving the dissent from the chair that, according to governance rules, cannot be ignored, and it was ignored.
"We owe a little debate to our community."
Cr Quilty's motion to open debate on the topic - after she withdrew from Monday's meeting feeling disrespected - was defeated by Cr Kevin Poulton's casting vote.
The budget was also passed by the mayor's casting vote; it was opposed by Cr Quilty, Cr Ron Mildren and Cr Libby Hall.
"We were and are coming off very high rate bases from the past councils' budgets; it has, and will take some years to address," Cr Hall said.
"Looking at the budget figures, I believe we can still provide the services and infrastructure without a 1.5 per cent rise."
Following a zero rate rise last year, the increase for the average ratepayer will represent $1.01 per week on the bottom line of rates and charges.
Cr John Watson, whose video stream was broadcast to councillors in the chamber, believed the rate rise was reasonable.
"I don't think I missed many community consultations with both the plan and the budget, and the majority of our community are thinking we're doing a great job for the city and the actual rates weren't raised a lot," he said.
A $23 million capital works program will include Baranduda Fields Stage 1 ($5.2 million), roads renewal ($2.8 million), a major roads LED street lighting upgrade ($1.2 million), the Hilltop strategy implementation ($100,000) and stage two of the Belvoir Park playground ($294,000).
A reference group will be established for council's adopted rating plan.
Council staff had requested this group's scope of activities - a resolution made in May - be changed from 12 to 30 months due to existing priority projects for the finance team.
Councillors were told the "12 month timeframe can't be met unless external consultants are engaged to undertake the review at an estimated cost of $50,000".
Cr Ron Mildren said council was "on thin ice when staff can dictate the strategic decision-making of council".
"It should be the responsibility of the CEO, and staff through the CEO, to adjust the priorities to make sure this happens," he said.
The original recommendation was passed with Cr Poulton's casting vote.
RSL Victoria's push to have the option to buy TAFEspace after a veteran well-being centre has been established was knocked back by councillors.
Councillors unanimously supported the recommendation to decline the RSL's request to be granted an option to purchase the land, "due to the strategic location of this land".
Cr Ron Mildren, while agreeing the request for a purchase option should be declined, believed council's decision would mean the RSL abandons the site.
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Cr Graeme Simpfendorfer hoped an alternative location could be found for the centre.
"I do empathise with them quite heavily in where they stand and what their submission was to us," he said.
"In my view, the best interest of council and our community is to run with this recommendation and maintain ownership."
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