Vincent rates stinger

MOST Vincent property owners will be hit with a modest 2.7 per cent rates rise, but poorer homeowners could face a hike of nearly 10 per cent, warns a Voice reader.

The reader, who wanted to remain anonymous, highlighted the minimum rates increase Vincent would be charging for low-end properties.

Rates are usually based on the rentable valuable of your house, but councils set a “minimum rate” to recover their costs, as even small properties need their bins emptied and verge trees maintained.

If the draft figures in Vincent’s budget are approved, the minimum rate will surge to from $1007 to $1100 in a single year, a 9.235 per cent increase.

That’s on top of a 10.5 per cent increase last year, and around 28 per cent the year before.

“If you complain, then you are told that hey are much cheaper than Stirling, and that we have not been paying enough in rates for a long time now,” our correspondent writes.

“This is the same council that scrapped alfresco fees to local businesses, at great expense to the city, the same businesses that are about to be able to start reducing their weekend penalty rates to their staff.

“Yet if you are a little one-bedroom unit ratepayer in Vincent, then you are copping these large increases in your rates, and told not to complain about it.”

The draft budget report, prepared by Vincent council staff, states the minimum rate of $707 from 2014/15, “understated the cost and value of services and facilities provided by the city and was recognised as being out of proportion to all other metropolitan local governments”.

Vincent remains the second cheapest minimum rate after Perth, with the average in the metro area hovering at $1143, if you include both rates and rubbish charges.

The proposed rates are out for public comment until June 28, available from the council website or Vincent council offices.

by DAVID BELL

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