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Rates notices across the Whitsunday region will be issued on Thursday 30th January 2014.
Whitsunday Regional Council Mayor Jenny Whitney said that residents will begin receiving ratesnotices over the next week.
“The date for payment of rates will be Monday 3rd March, and if you pay by this date you willreceive a 5% discount,” Mayor Whitney said.
“Ratepayers are reminded that rates must be paid in full, including the separate infrastructurecharge, to be eligible for the discount.
“New to this rates notice is the State Government Emergency Management, Fire and Rescue(EMFR) Levy which was introduced by the Queensland Government and commenced from 1stJanuary 2014.
“The levy replaces the previous Fire Levy and is now required to be charged on all propertieswithin our region.
“Rural properties that have a local rural fire brigade will still be required to pay the Fire Levy,” she said.
Ratepayers are also reminded that rates which are not paid in full will incur interest charges.
Residents experiencing financial hardship are encouraged to contact Whitsunday Regional Council to discuss rates assistance options.
Details of rates assistance options include:
Council has adopted a pensioner remission policy which grants pensioners a remission on general rates of 20% of rates and charges to a maximum of $300.00.
Discount on Rates
Council will allow a 5% discount on nominated payments received within 30 days of the issue ofthe rate notice. The discount is applicable to the following charges:• General Rates and Charges 5%• Water Access Charge 5%• Water Consumption Charge nil %• Waste Water (Sewerage) Charge 5%• Domestic Garbage/Refuse Charge 5%• Whitsunday Infrastructure Charge 5%• Whitsunday Refuse Facility Charge 5%• Rural Fire Brigade Charge nil%• State EMFR Levy nil %
Donations and Concessions for Not for Profit Organisations
Council has adopted the 'Donations and Concessions for Not for Profit Organisations - Rates' and 'Donations for Not for Profit Organisations - Affordable Housing' policies.
These policies will allow for a donation or concession as applicable for financial assistanceequivalent to a percentage of the net rates and charges, subject to compliance with specifiedcriteria.
Remission for Granny Flats
Council recognises the financial impact of additional service charges for property owners whoprovide non-income-generating granny flats in support of dependent relatives. To ameliorate thisimpact, Council has adopted a policy (Rating Concessions - Granny Flats) to grant a remission on the extra service charges.
Deferral of Liability to Pay Rates
Individual ratepayers may find it difficult to meet their obligations due to their financialcircumstances. Notwithstanding Council's other policies, special arrangements can be madeprovided proof of hardship is provided to Council. The nature of these arrangements is generallydetermined on a case-by-case basis.
Natural Hardship Council may, at it’s discretion allow other concessions or remissions if it is of the opinion that some unusual and serious circumstances exist which may prevent payment within the appointed time or otherwise delay the payment of rates and charges as they fall due.
Exceptional Circumstances – Natural Disaster or Drought Relief
Council may at its discretion grant some relief to rural ratepayers who are financially stressed bydrought or have been affected by a natural disaster.
Council will levy rates on a discounted valuation to persons who subdivide land. The discountedvaluation used to levy rates will be 40% of the valuation. The subdivision must have beenapproved by the Chief Executive of the Department of Natural Resources, for this discount toapply.
Copies of policies and forms can be located on Council’s website www.whitsundayrc.qld.gov.auRates can be paid at any of Council’s Customer Service Centres, or via any of the methodsoutlined on the rates notice, including online at www.whitsundayrc.qld.gov.au
For enquiries, please contact your local Customer Service Centre in Bowen on 07 4761 3600,Proserpine on 07 4945 0200 or Collinsville on 07 4785 5366.
For media enquiries, contact:Kate Lennox, Communications ManagerPhone: 07 4945 0614, 0427 458 369 or Email: firstname.lastname@example.org