Council Invites Community Comment on Revenue and Rates

Northern Grampians Shire Council is revising its Revenue and Rating Plan as a response to concerns raised by ratepayers in the last year. Council is seeking comment from the community and will be holding two community information sessions in the lead-up to the update of the Revenue and Rating Plan 2022-23.

The Minister for Local Government has announced that the rate cap for 2022-23 will be 1.75% per cent. This increase will apply to the total revenue the Council can increase from the current year to the next. Last year ratepayers expressed concerns over the dramatic increase in their properties values and how that has impacted on them in the 2021-22 year. Council has been working on options available that can help address large movements in valuation from one year to the next.

The Revenue and Rating Plan will be discussed at Council’s Info Expo sessions this month. The Info Expo is an opportunity for community members to partake in discussions with councillors and council staff on several key council documents in an informal event setting. Community members are welcome to ‘drop-in’ at any time during the sessions.

Stawell

21 April 2022

4pm to 6pm

Council Chambers, Pleasant Creek Historic Precinct

St Arnaud

22 April 2022

10.30am to 12.30pm

Perry Room, St Arnaud Town Hall

After these sessions, Council will consider all submissions prior to the adoption of the plan on 23 May. Submissions will close May 13.

Council believes that the proposed changes to the Revenue and Rating Plan will provide a fairer system of rates which will address property valuation fluctuations. The proposed reduction in municipal charges will assist those with lower valued properties to have more affordable rates.

Northern Grampians Shire Council Mayor Cr Tony Driscoll said rates are always a hot topic.

“It’s important to listen to the community and to get the balance right. Last year, due to an incredibly strong surge in property and land values across Victoria, our farm ratepayers were quite vocal about the impact this was having on their annual rates and we accommodated for their concerns.”

“We do not have any say in what the rate cap will be, but we can certainly look at the impact of it as it is applied to properties and try to make our rating system as fair as possible.

“This is a tough role for us because on the one hand we want to make sure that we have sufficient revenue from our rating system that we can continue to offer the community the services that they need and on the other hand, we need to also make sure that our ratepaying community is not adversely affected by a jump in their rates notice.”

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