Rate rise refuted
ACCUSATIONS the rate increase of six per cent announced in the Bundaberg Regional Council's budget is closer to 11 per cent have been fiercely refuted by the council.
Mayor Lorraine Pyefinch said the furore was due to a mistake by the media, including the NewsMail, which did not mention a 10 per cent discount if the rates were paid on time only applied to the general rate, and had been removed from water, sewerage and waste.
But leading the charge against the council is developer Bill Moorhead, who said if the discount on water, sewerage and waste was removed it took the real discount down to about 5 per cent.
“When you add that back into the six per cent rates increase, for me that comes to 11 per cent,” he said.
Mr Moorhead said most people threw away their old rates bills.
“A lot of people won't pick up on it,” he said.
Mr Moorhead said the booklet put in with the rates notice spelt out the true state of affairs, but most people would not read it.
Cr Pyefinch said removing the discount was not a decision taken lightly.
She said the removal of state subsidies meant the council could no longer afford the discounts.
The council could not fund the infrastructure needed over the next 10 years if it continued giving the discounts.
A lot of councils in Queensland had taken off all discounts, she said.