Council finance manager Gillian Buganey with a rate notice and the council’s information brochure.
Council finance manager Gillian Buganey with a rate notice and the council’s information brochure.

Rates set to increase

RATES notices will arrive in letterboxes across the region today and tomorrow.

With some ratepayers predicting crippling rate rises, council has delivered a clear message that there will be winners and losers due to the new region-wide differential rating system.

When delivering its 2010 -2011 budget, Mayor Ron Bellingham and his councillors made no secret of the nightmarish task they had in trying to balance the books.

The overall rate revenue had to be increased by 9.7 per cent, but in reality State Government land valuations combined with the new rating system will leave some individuals with huge rises, while others may find themselves paying less.

The minimum general rate has soared to $725 for residential urban and rural properties.

However, one thing missing from your rates notice this year will be the road and waste levies previously on Warwick bills and Stanthorpe's landfill levy.

To ease the burden on those having to pay more, ratepayers will this year have 60 days to pay rates and receive a 10 per cent discount.

As council starts to collect cash for 2010-2011, it is still trying to rake in the remainder of rates overdue from 2009-2010.

A council spokeswoman said reconciliations for the last financial year were not yet complete and so it wasn't an exact figure, however outstanding rates amounted to $1.5 million, which represented 4.45 per cent of the total rates levied.

She added: “There is no direct comparison because this is the first 12 month period. Last financial statements are from 15 March 2008 to 30 June 2009. Therefore, the comparison would be 12 months against 14.5 months thanks to amalgamation.”



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