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Questions About Rates
  • How are my rates calculated?
  • What if I disagree with my rates?
  • What can make my rates go up?
  • What is the Emergency Services Levy?
  • Do pensioners get a discount on rates?
  • Do I have to pay my rates all at once?
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Council Rates

Your rates contribute towards the upkeep and maintenance of the City’s infrastructure, including roads, paths, parks, playgrounds and sports grounds, as well as the many community services the City provides, such as the leisure and aquatic centre, library, ranger services and comprehensive arts and events programs.

How are my rates tracking?

Average Residential rates (adjusted incl. refuse charge) for the last 4 years 

How have these rates been calculated?


How are my rates calculated?

  • The rates paid on residential property is calculated based on the potential rental value of the premises and the operating requirements of the Council.
  • The rates you pay are a proportionate share of what is needed by the Council to provide local services and facilities.
  • That is, if your home has greater potential rental return than your neighbours, you will pay a higher share of the total rates budgeted by Council.

What if I disagree with my rates?

  • There are two options to query your rates:
    1. Under the Local Government Act 1995 you have 42 days from the time the rates notice is issued to appeal your rates with the Council's Chief Executive Officer. If you do decide to query your rates you must still pay the full amount while it is being reviewed.
    2. You can also appeal how the rental value of your property was calculated. This is the Gross Rental Value (GRV) determined by the Valuer General and as mentioned previously sets your share of what the Council requires. Your annual GRV - or annual potential rent for the property - is included on the rates notice. If you believe this is too high you can challenge this, for further please click here.  

What can make my rates go up?

  • Your rates can increase if the Council requires more funds to provide local services and facilities. For example if it builds new facilities or adds services.
  • Rates can also increase if your property increases in potential rental value faster than others in your area. For example if you make improvements to your home that increase its rental value then your share of rates will increase.
  • Councils' budgets and consequently funds required through rates are also affected by changes by other sectors of Government. For example when the State Government increased its charges for power and added $280,000 to the street lighting bill that cost has to be met by Councils.

What is the Emergency Services Levy?

  • The State Government requires Councils to collect the Emergency Services Levy from ratepayers.
  • The funds raised go to the Department of Fire and Emergency Services. The funds do not go to Councils and the rate charged is not set by Councils.

Do pensioners get a discount on rates?

  • Pensioners with a valid seniors' or concession card are entitled to rates reductions depending on their status on Council rates, water charges and the Emergency Services Levy.
  • However from 1 July 2016, the State Government has capped rebate to pensioners at 50% of their rates up to $750.

Do I have to pay my rates all at once?

  • Councils understand that sometimes people experience financial hardship which makes it difficult to meet all of their financial commitments when they are due.
  • Please contact a Council Rates Officer to arrange a suitable payment arrangement to settle the rates debt by the end of the financial year.