THERE has been much discussion in the papers over the past weeks regarding the 9.9 per cent rate rise imposed by Rockingham council.
I received my rates notice concerning my home Warnbro, along with a copy of the City Chronicle.
I would like to tell the Mayor and the CEO that their message is both offensive and misleading.
I’ve been a resident in Warnbro since 1998 and a home owner since 2003.
In that time, the council has continued to provide excuses for applying double the State average for council rate rises.
It has even had the audacity to charge rates for services not delivered.
As a rough summary, the mayor has indicated that the average rate rise over the past decade has been “a very low 4.8 per cent” equating to an average of $1.50 per week, which is fine if you earn what the council CEO is paid.
Just to be clear, this very low annual rate increase represents rate rises of 50 per cent above CPI every year for the same period – you do the maths.
In my own case, this annualised average is almost 7 per cent or double CPI every year that I have been resident.
In the “where your rates go” section, you will notice that almost 30 per cent goes into road maintenance – this is on top of the exorbitant Federal and State taxes put in place to fund road infrastructure.
You will also notice that nearly 20 per cent goes into waste collection and disposal, although this also incurs an additional charge and has escalated at the annualised rate of 9.67 per cent in the time I’ve been a resident.
Mr Mayor, there is nothing in the budget submission to suggest the council is doing anything to constrain costs but you are planning to going on a spending spree.
The present annualised rate rises of 50 per cent more than CPI are not sustainable to the people you are supposed to represent.
Perhaps, the council should be limiting itself to managing continuing support costs and ask the people who have to foot the bill concerning spending on new infrastructure.