COMMUNITY opinion is being sought as Ballina Shire Council determine whether or not it should apply for a permanent increase to the general rate income above the rate peg limit set by the NSW government.
Council said the challenge of how to best maintain services and ageing infrastructure was one faced by it and many other councils, as these costs rise faster than it's income.
The proposed rate increase, if approved by the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART), will commence in 2017/18 and continue for three years until 2019/20.
Council said the income from the rate increase will allow it to renew key infrastructure such as roads, stormwater, playgrounds, sports fields and open spaces in a more timely manner.
It will also fund a Healthy Waterways Program which will improve the health and amenity of water bodies such as the Richmond River, Lake Ainsworth and Shaws Bay.
The total proposed special rate variation is as follows:
- 2017/18 - 4.9%
- 2018/19 - 5.9%
- 2019/20 - 5.9%
Information about the proposed special rate variation has been mailed to each ratepayer and residents are encouraged to give feedback. There are many ways to provide feedback, including:
- Attend a public meeting at Alstonville, Lennox Head, Ballina, or Wardell
- Email email@example.com
- Complete the online survey at ballina.nsw.gov.au/srvproposal
- Make a written submission to Ballina Shire Council, P O Box 450, Ballina NSW 2478
- Visit our website ballina.nsw.gov.au/srvproposal
Submissions to the proposal close on Monday, February 6 2017.
Council is required to advise IPART by February 20 as to whether they will proceed with the proposed rate increase.
Further information is available on Council's website ballina.nsw.gov.au