Victoria's newly extended COVID-19 lockdown will cost the Warrnambool council around $250,000, according to chief executive officer Peter Schneider.
The loss comes on top of the roughly $250,000 in lost income from the week-long lockdown in early June.
Mr Schneider said the combined shutdowns were a blow to the council's bottom line.
"We will have to do some reforecasting once this lockdown is over," he said.
The financial hit comes from lost revenue that normally comes into council coffers from Warrnambool attractions, Mr Schneider explained.
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He estimated this lockdown may not be as expensive as the last one, which fell on the Queen's Birthday weekend, but it was still significant.
Last year the council also gave up a planned 4.5 per cent rate rise, and accepted a 1.5 per cent rise for the new financial year, well below the long-term average. Mr Schneider said the lost income would likely put the council's major projects on ice for the time being.
"Usually it is a matter of deferring our capital expenditure. The asset management plan might be pushed back a year, things like that."
The key was for the council to be flexible, Mr Schneider said, adding that Warrnambool was in a better position than many other councils.
"You have to cut the cloth accordingly. We managed to do that last year," he said. "Some councils around Australia are carrying huge debts right now; debts that will take 10 years to pay off."
He said he hoped the state and federal governments would step in at some point with budget stimulus such as grant programs to help shoulder the load.
"We also have the capacity to borrow, so that's something we can look at if necessary," Mr Schneider said.
But he assured ratepayers they wouldn't be burdened with the task of pulling the council's balance sheet back into the black.
"There are a range of triggers we can pull, and you can only pull some of them. But we will pull all those triggers before we go to the ratepayers," he said.
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