CLARENCE Valley Council last night approved the 2012-13 budget.
After lengthy debate in council chambers in Grafton the budget and operational plan was approved.
It took almost two hours of debate and even then councillors Ian Tiley and Jim Simmons voted against the resolution.
Mayor Richie Williamson said the operational plan wasn't perfect, nor would it ever be.
"But we are in a healthy situation," he said.
"In this time we have available funds to return greater investment back to our ratepayers.
"That's our job, that's what we are here for."
The budget will return a deficit but will include $1 million to be put into road repairs across the region.
Updates on figures and projects that made the cut later today with a full report on the discussion in tomorrow's Daily Examiner.