Public Consultation - Draft Annual Business and Long Term Financial Plans

15th May 2020
Nil increase to general rate in the dollar

Public Consultation - Draft Annual Business and Long Term Financial Plans

For 2020/2021 Council proposes to have a NIL increase to the rate in the dollar for all categories of properties with additional support being given to some sectors by way of rate capping and rate remissions. Rate increases will occur where there has been property valuation increases through natural growth.

Council further proposes increases of 3.5% for both CWMS (effluent) and waste management service charges to ensure full cost recovery of expenditure for these services.

This year has seen extraordinary circumstances come about with the global pandemic crisis and the effects still to be fully realised within our community.

Council have been mindful that there will be community members who will suffer financial hardship as a result of government restrictions placed on many businesses and the effect loss of employment may have.

Council moved very quickly to put in place assistance to ratepayers who may be experiencing financial difficulties by resolving to waive all fines and interest on outstanding rates, working with sporting and community groups to reduce fees and charges and to offer special arrangement and payment plan options for Council rates.

During the development of this Annual Business Plan and Budget our Elected Members looked very closely at ways to further assist those in our community who may experience hardship during these times.

Below is a summary of support measures Council are proposing for ratepayers for 2020/2021 –

To waive or reduce fees and charges associated with COVID-19 economic hardship to community groups, clubs, associations and businesses payable on Council owned premises

approximately

$41,000

To waive fines and penalties in bulk that are associated with late payment of rates arising from COVID-19 (to be reviewed 31 August 2020)

approximately

$47,000

The ability to enter into payment plans and arrangements based on hardship

Please refer to appendix 4 of the Draft Annual Business Plan and Budget 2020/2021 Council’s Rates and Charges – Financial Hardship Policy.

 

To suspend all legal action and debt collection activities (to be reviewed 31 August 2020)

 

Apply rate capping of 7% to all residential properties

$56,095

Apply rate remission to commercial properties of 50% for quarter 1 and 25% for quarter 2 for businesses eligible for the Job Keeper payment from the Commonwealth Government and for businesses that are eligible for the Job Keeper payment but have chosen not to trade.

up to

$160,755

Continue to fund fixed rate remission for those ratepayers who are on fixed incomes such as pensioners and self funded retirees of –

  • $20 per annum   on general rates
  • $20 per annum   on effluent drainage service charge
  • $20 per annum   on waste management service charge

approximately

$25,000

As well as the above direct support to ratepayers, Council will carry out a comprehensive capital works program that is not only providing upgrades and renewal of community assets but is also aimed at providing much needed stimulus to the local economy.

The engagement of local contractors and employees and the purchasing of goods and materials from local suppliers and businesses to complete the capital works maintains levels of economic activity and productivity in our district.

Please refer to the Draft Annual Business Plan for a list of operating and capital projects that are proposed for the 2020/2021 financial year.  The total expenditure proposed for capital works for 2020/2021 (excluding drought funded projects and scheduled asset renewal projects) is $2,563,749.

The Draft Plans are now open for Public Consultation with Council inviting feedback from the community. To view the Plans and for further information on submitting feedback, please visit our Public Consultation page.