Mayor slams State Government’s ‘unfair’ rates changes
Tuesday 17 November 2020
Inner West Mayor Darcy Byrne has criticised the Berejiklian Government's council rate harmonisation process for merged councils, saying that forcing through rates changes in 2021 without any phase-in period will create unfair financial burden on many ratepayers.
The State Government is forcing amalgamated Councils to create one rates system in the 2021 financial year and is so far refusing to allow amalgamated Councils to phase rates changes in over a number of years, which would help reduce the impacts on homeowners and businesses.
Inner West Council has resolved to not increase the yield of rates through the process and to request that the government allow the new system to be introduced over a number of years.
“The Government’s forced amalgamation has been very costly for ratepayers and the harmonisation of the rates system must be introduced gradually to minimise the impacts on our ratepayers,” said Mayor Byrne.
“While we won’t be increasing rates overall there will inevitably be winners and losers from integrating the three systems and we don’t want there to be any unnecessary impacts on our residents.
“The middle of a global pandemic and economic crisis is obviously not the right time for increased bills of any kind.
“I’m calling on the Local Government Minister to amend the law to allow the for a phasing-in period, so that Council can do everything in its power to help residents facing a sudden financial burden,” he said.
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