Resident concern over early rates bill forces council review
LIVINGSTONE Shire Council has vowed to review the timing of rates notices, after community concern over early and usually high bills.
Deputy mayor councillor Nigel Hutton said last year council decided to combine the general rates and water notices into one bill, in a bid to reduce its environmental footprint.
"While synchronising the two bills has saved 18,000 envelopes and significant postages costs, the earlier mail-out has had the unintended consequence of coinciding with the payment of traditional festive season and school expenses,” Cr Hutton said.
"In response to community requests, council will be re-looking at the timing of the mail-out of future rates notices and in the meantime is extending the discount period for General Rates to March 14 which is around where the due date for payments would have normally fallen.”
It comes after residents posted concerns on social media.
Mayor Bill Ludwig said he hoped extending the discount period would help those who had traditionally budgeted for a mid-March rates payment.
"In response to the recent feedback we have had from the community, I believe the majority of Councillors are likely to support a return to the previous mid-March due date for future rates payments,” Cr Ludwig said.
The due date for Water Notice payments, which do not attract a discount, will remain at Wednesday 28 February 2018.