IPART approves Randwick Council rate variation to fund new community projects

about 2 years ago

A moderate $68 increase in rates for the average Randwick City ratepayer next financial year 2018-19 is set to deliver a number of significant community projects.

The Independent Pricing & Regulatory Tribunal today (15 May 2018) announced approval of Randwick Council’s three-year special rate variation saying Council had clearly explained the purpose and impact of the variation to the community and that it would have a ‘moderate but reasonable’ impact on ratepayers.

Randwick Mayor Lindsay Shurey said Council would now get on with the job of delivering some significant building projects and social programs for the community.

“In December and January we consulted with local residents and ratepayers about whether they were prepared to pay a little more to speed up delivery of some significant projects.

“Of the almost 6,000 responses Council received, 49% backed Council’s preferred rate increase option, 29% supported a smaller increase while 22% supported the minimal rate peg increase.

“Increasing rates is not a decision we take lightly. I know that household costs and living expenses are rising and we keep our rates low while still providing great services and projects.

“But it’s clear that many of the projects we proposed as part of the Our Community Our Future program are an important priority for the community and people want to see them achieved within a reasonable time frame,” Mayor Shurey said.

The Our Community Our Future projects include:

  • Anti-terrorism measures to make public places safer as required by the Federal Government
  • Upgrade to the La Perouse Museum
  • Addressing domestic violence through innovative strategies to provide more housing options for those exiting domestic violence and provide dedicated outreach workers
  • Undergrounding powerlines to increase street tree planting opportunities
  • Providing an arts and cultural centre
  • Upgrading the Randwick Literary Institute
  • Building a new indoor sports centre and gymnastics centre at Heffron Park, Maroubra
  • Implementing Council’s digital strategy
  • Various park, community building and public toilet upgrades

IPART has approved an overall increase to Council’s total rate base over the next three years of 19.85%. However this increase also includes a special levy on Port Botany which reduces the overall impact on residential ratepayers.

For the average residential ratepayer, the increase each year for the next three years will be a moderate 5.52% or about $68 a year. If the Special Rate Variation had not been approved, rates would have increased regardless due to the State Government rate peg by between 2.3% and 2.5% a year over the next three years.

The rate increase has been included as part of Council’s draft Budget and Operational Plan 2018-19 which is currently on public exhibition for community comment until 1 June 2018.

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Media enquiries:

JoshuaHay 0402351459 orJoshua.hay@randwick.nsw.gov.au

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