Julie Matheson for PERTH

Representing WESTERN AUSTRALIA PARTY

Consultation on council RATES

Subiaco ratepayers warm to consultation on budgets

Council budgets are not like business budgets, they are embedded with projects set by council a long time ago.  Getting a new project approved without a significant rate increase is tricky. 

When the Regal Theatre approached Subiaco Council for a grant to replace its seating, Subiaco’s draft budget was set with an increase of 4.65% but only included a fraction of the $500,000 required (Ref, the Post, 5 Sept, p.1).  Finding the extra funds would mean additional 2% top up.

Having campaigned against force amalgamations, and rebutting the Premier’s claims that larger councils would have lower rates, I consulted with Subiaco ratepayers through my email list whether or not they supported an additional rate increase of 2% to fund new seating.  Surprisingly, the majority who replied, some 68%, were in favour of a rate increase as long as it was a once off, and not embedded into the rates for further increase.

However I was not in favour of a 6.65% rate increase.  In the end a list of projects to cull was produced, the Regal Theatre got its funding for new seats, and Subiaco ratepayers ended up with a 2.9% increase, an increase I did not support.

 Subiaco Council’s budget is again up for review in November 2015.  It has come to light that state government cost-shifting has been embedded with a “review” of Subiaco’s Strategic Community Plan.  This compulsory plan has already cost hundreds of thousands of dollars during “Think 2030”.  It’s to be reviewed costing ratepayers even more money.  I will be consulting with ratepayers on this one, and any other cost-shifting from the state government to council ratepayers because your say matters.

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This entry was posted on September 28, 2015 by in Rates, Small business and tagged , , .
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