Rates rise in North Burnett budget
NORTH Burnett residents will be hit by a 4.95% rate rise in the North Burnett Regional Council's 2016-17 budget, which was released in Biggenden earlier today.
This will equate to a $148 per annum increase for homeowners within the towns.
The minimum rate for residential ratepayers on less than 1ha will increase from $676 to $709.
The rate rise is different for Mount Perry residents, due to not having a sewerage scheme charge.
They will instead face a $124.60 rise.
Mayor Rachel Chambers told the council in her budget speech that no one enjoyed increasing rates.
"The North Burnett Regional Council does not want to add extra pressure on an already stressed community, however, in order to keep moving forward as a council we must keep trying to become sustainable and thus have to work with agencies such as Queensland Treasury with our plan moving forward to a surplus position in 2020," Cr Chambers said.
"After meticulously considering all factors, we have decided on an across-the-board, 4.95% rate increase to the general residential rate.
"To the residential ratepayer this means an increase of $2.87 per week for all towns excluding Mt Perry, who will have a $2.42 per week increase.
"We have kept the full 10% early payment discount."
There are 6255 rateable lots of land in the North Burnett, so the rise will raise the council an extra $995,682, bringing total revenue over the 2016-17 financial year to $9,223,127.
The council has several initiatives to soften the rate rise.
North Burnett residents will now be able to dispose of household waste at all tips in the North Burnett for free.
"Efficiencies will be gained through a new business system and website that NBRC has invested in, which will enable ratepayers to conduct business with council in a more streamlined manner in the future," Cr Chambers said.
"This will include the ability to pay bills online, communicate with council electronically to address a range of issues, and search for information such as when your road will be graded.
Council has also allocated $1,313,250 to keep the towns tidy and to maintain amenities and parks.