Strat­egy to mean 91pc of res­i­dents will get rates cut

North West Telegraph - - NEWS - Phoebe Pin

The Min­is­ter for Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment, Her­itage, Cul­ture and the Arts has ap­proved the Town of Port Hed­land’s 2018-19 rat­ing strat­egy which will lead to 91 per cent of res­i­dents re­ceiv­ing a re­duc­tion in their rates.

Port Hed­land Mayor Camilo Blanco said the strat­egy was the cul­mi­na­tion of months of plan­ning and con­sul­ta­tion with com­mu­nity mem­bers who had ex­pressed con­cern about the con­tin­ued rise in liv­ing ex­penses in the Pil­bara re­gion.

“The driv­ing fac­tor be­hind the 201819 rat­ing strat­egy is coun­cil’s need to face the re­al­ity of de­creas­ing property val­ues across Hed­land in re­cent years,” Mr Blanco said.

“The pro­posed strat­egy seeks a more equal dis­tri­bu­tion of how the rates yield is col­lected, and we have tried to strike the right bal­ance be­tween the needs and con­cerns of res­i­dents, busi­nesses and in­dus­try,” he said.

Port Hed­land Ratepay­ers’ As­so­ci­a­tion sec­re­tary Arnold Carter said the group had not met for­mally to dis­cuss the im­pli­ca­tions of the 2018-19 strat­egy since it was ap­proved last week and hoped the re­lease of the 2018-19 Bud­get would clar­ify how funds would be al­lo­cated.

“We are quite con­cerned about the pro­posed in­crease from $25 mil­lion to $30 mil­lion in rates rev­enue since last year,” he said.

“We don’t think it is nec­es­sary for rates to go up at all and would like to know where this money will come from.”

The rat­ing strat­egy, as part of the 2018-19 Town of Port of Hed­land bud­get, was unan­i­mously ap­proved at a spe­cial coun­cil meet­ing last Thurs­day.

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