Special Rate Variation - Pathway to Our Future

Consultation has concluded.


Update: IPART Approves Special Rate Variation for Shoalhaven City Council

Tuesday, 15 May 2018: This morning Council has been informed that IPART has approved the application for a Special Rate Variation, on a permanent basis.

This means the rate increase of 13.2% that had been applied last year, will be retained with a further increase of 5% (which includes the rate peg of 2.3%) for the next three years is also applied.

This will mean that for the average residential ratepayer the increase is about $59 per year for the 2018/19 financial year or $1.10 per week and about $2 per week for business rates and farmland. Read Council's full statement...

View IPART's determination...


Background

In 2015, Shoalhaven City Council was declared as a ‘Fit for the Future’ Council by the NSW State Government. This was based on a Council submission provided to the Office of Local Government (OLG) and the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) which outlined several actions Council would undertake to improve financial sustainability. Council’s submission included a proposal to permanently increase Shoalhaven’s total general rate income by applying for a Special Rate Variation (SRV).

From November 2016, Council engaged the Shoalhaven community in discussions around increasing the amount of money ratepayers pay to Council as rates. Council also sought community feedback on a number of rate increase options. An increase in rates income would allow Council to increase the level of funding provided for much-needed infrastructure maintenance and renewal, maintenance of services and financial sustainability and address infrastructure requirements for the Verons Estate.

As part of the rates discussion, Council suggested alternatives to rate increases, such as the closure of certain services and facilities, and increases in fees and charges. These alternatives were not accepted by the community. On the contrary, feedback to Council indicated an increase in community expectations and a desire for the community to have new facilities and infrastructure.

After considering feedback from the community, Council decided to apply to IPART for increases above the rate peg of 13.2% in 2017/18 (including actual rate peg limit of 1.5%) and 14% in 2018/19 (including IPART estimated rate peg limit of 2.5%). This application and community engagement process can be viewed on the 'Your Rates, Everybody’s Future' webpage.

The outcome of the application was determined by IPART in May 2017. IPART approved a temporary increase of 13.2% for 2017/18 only. The application for subsequent years was not endorsed as IPART wanted our Delivery Program and Operational Plan to more clearly outline the SRV proposal.


Proposed Special Rate Variation 2018

To ensure consistency with Council's Long Term Financial Plan (LTFP) and to meet Fit for the Future benchmarks, in November 2017, Council determined to again apply to IPART, for an SRV, for the following three financial years: 2018/19; 2019/20 and 2020/21. Without applying for another SRV, after June 2018, Council’s rate income would only increase in line with the applicable rate peg.

In February 2018, Council applied to IPART for approval to retain the 13.2% SRV (approved as a one-off increase in 2017/18) as a permanent increase and for the additional special variations:

  • 5.0% in 2018/19 (including an estimated rate peg of 2.5%)
  • 5.0% in 2019/20 (including an estimated rate peg of 2.5%)
  • 5.0% in 2020/21 (including an estimated rate peg of 2.5%)

Council’s 2017 IPART application contained cumulative increases of 35.6%, however, following feedback from the community, in the 2018 application Council reduced the cumulative impact of the proposed rate increases to 31.0% over four years. This compares to a cumulative increase of 9.3% over four years, if only the rate peg was applied and no SRV.

Council's 2017 Integrated Strategic Plan (including the Delivery Program and Operational Plan) was updated to more clearly outline the SRV proposal. View the Integrated Strategic Plan 2017...


Impact on Average Rate Payer

The following chart illustrates the impact of the rate rise on average residential rates. Please note that the value of your property, in comparison to other properties in the Shoalhaven, helps determine how much you pay in rates. This means your rates may be significantly more or less than average.

Without the 2018 SRV having been approved, after June 2018, Council’s rate income could have only increase in line with the applicable rate peg.


Community Consultation

Community consultation was undertaken on the revised Special Rate Variation proposal from 26 October to 23 November 2017. Community members were encouraged to provide feedback online, via email, mail and by attending public meetings. Three public meetings were held during the consultation period (Tuesday 31 October 2017 at 7.00pm at Huskisson Community Centre, Wednesday 1 November 2017 at 7.00pm at Ulladulla Civic Centre - Auditorium, and Monday 13 November 2017 at 7.00pm at the Nowra School of Arts).


Learn More

Further information regarding IPART's announcement on Tuesday, 15 May 2018 to approve Council's application for a Special Rate Variation will be uploaded to this page as information becomes available.

Further background information can be found in the FAQ and document archive sections of this page.

Links to Council's previous IPART application and details of the community engagement process can be viewed on the Your Rates, Everybody’s Future webpage.


Update: IPART Approves Special Rate Variation for Shoalhaven City Council

Tuesday, 15 May 2018: This morning Council has been informed that IPART has approved the application for a Special Rate Variation, on a permanent basis.

This means the rate increase of 13.2% that had been applied last year, will be retained with a further increase of 5% (which includes the rate peg of 2.3%) for the next three years is also applied.

This will mean that for the average residential ratepayer the increase is about $59 per year for the 2018/19 financial year or $1.10 per week and about $2 per week for business rates and farmland. Read Council's full statement...

View IPART's determination...


Background

In 2015, Shoalhaven City Council was declared as a ‘Fit for the Future’ Council by the NSW State Government. This was based on a Council submission provided to the Office of Local Government (OLG) and the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) which outlined several actions Council would undertake to improve financial sustainability. Council’s submission included a proposal to permanently increase Shoalhaven’s total general rate income by applying for a Special Rate Variation (SRV).

From November 2016, Council engaged the Shoalhaven community in discussions around increasing the amount of money ratepayers pay to Council as rates. Council also sought community feedback on a number of rate increase options. An increase in rates income would allow Council to increase the level of funding provided for much-needed infrastructure maintenance and renewal, maintenance of services and financial sustainability and address infrastructure requirements for the Verons Estate.

As part of the rates discussion, Council suggested alternatives to rate increases, such as the closure of certain services and facilities, and increases in fees and charges. These alternatives were not accepted by the community. On the contrary, feedback to Council indicated an increase in community expectations and a desire for the community to have new facilities and infrastructure.

After considering feedback from the community, Council decided to apply to IPART for increases above the rate peg of 13.2% in 2017/18 (including actual rate peg limit of 1.5%) and 14% in 2018/19 (including IPART estimated rate peg limit of 2.5%). This application and community engagement process can be viewed on the 'Your Rates, Everybody’s Future' webpage.

The outcome of the application was determined by IPART in May 2017. IPART approved a temporary increase of 13.2% for 2017/18 only. The application for subsequent years was not endorsed as IPART wanted our Delivery Program and Operational Plan to more clearly outline the SRV proposal.


Proposed Special Rate Variation 2018

To ensure consistency with Council's Long Term Financial Plan (LTFP) and to meet Fit for the Future benchmarks, in November 2017, Council determined to again apply to IPART, for an SRV, for the following three financial years: 2018/19; 2019/20 and 2020/21. Without applying for another SRV, after June 2018, Council’s rate income would only increase in line with the applicable rate peg.

In February 2018, Council applied to IPART for approval to retain the 13.2% SRV (approved as a one-off increase in 2017/18) as a permanent increase and for the additional special variations:

  • 5.0% in 2018/19 (including an estimated rate peg of 2.5%)
  • 5.0% in 2019/20 (including an estimated rate peg of 2.5%)
  • 5.0% in 2020/21 (including an estimated rate peg of 2.5%)

Council’s 2017 IPART application contained cumulative increases of 35.6%, however, following feedback from the community, in the 2018 application Council reduced the cumulative impact of the proposed rate increases to 31.0% over four years. This compares to a cumulative increase of 9.3% over four years, if only the rate peg was applied and no SRV.

Council's 2017 Integrated Strategic Plan (including the Delivery Program and Operational Plan) was updated to more clearly outline the SRV proposal. View the Integrated Strategic Plan 2017...


Impact on Average Rate Payer

The following chart illustrates the impact of the rate rise on average residential rates. Please note that the value of your property, in comparison to other properties in the Shoalhaven, helps determine how much you pay in rates. This means your rates may be significantly more or less than average.

Without the 2018 SRV having been approved, after June 2018, Council’s rate income could have only increase in line with the applicable rate peg.


Community Consultation

Community consultation was undertaken on the revised Special Rate Variation proposal from 26 October to 23 November 2017. Community members were encouraged to provide feedback online, via email, mail and by attending public meetings. Three public meetings were held during the consultation period (Tuesday 31 October 2017 at 7.00pm at Huskisson Community Centre, Wednesday 1 November 2017 at 7.00pm at Ulladulla Civic Centre - Auditorium, and Monday 13 November 2017 at 7.00pm at the Nowra School of Arts).


Learn More

Further information regarding IPART's announcement on Tuesday, 15 May 2018 to approve Council's application for a Special Rate Variation will be uploaded to this page as information becomes available.

Further background information can be found in the FAQ and document archive sections of this page.

Links to Council's previous IPART application and details of the community engagement process can be viewed on the Your Rates, Everybody’s Future webpage.


Consultation has concluded.

  • IPART Approves Special Rate Variation for Shoalhaven City Council

    3 months ago
    Istock 485639432
    Tuesday, 15 May 2018: This morning Council has been informed that IPART has approved the application for a Special Rate Variation, on a permanent basis.

    This means the rate increase of 13.2% that had been applied last year, will be retained with a further increase of 5% (which includes the rate peg of 2.3%) for the next three years is also applied.

    This will mean that for the average residential ratepayer the increase is about $59 per year for the 18/19 financial year or $1.10 per week and about $2 per week for business rates and farmland.

    Director Finance Corporate...
    Tuesday, 15 May 2018: This morning Council has been informed that IPART has approved the application for a Special Rate Variation, on a permanent basis.

    This means the rate increase of 13.2% that had been applied last year, will be retained with a further increase of 5% (which includes the rate peg of 2.3%) for the next three years is also applied.

    This will mean that for the average residential ratepayer the increase is about $59 per year for the 18/19 financial year or $1.10 per week and about $2 per week for business rates and farmland.

    Director Finance Corporate and Community Services Stephen Dunshea said, “IPART’s assessment process is rigorous and having completed their review, they have agreed that this additional revenue is needed if Council is to provide the infrastructure and services that our community needs.”

    “The assessment by IPART clearly showed that Council had met all of their criteria and the increase was reasonable.”

    “The increase in rates last year helped to deliver some key projects for our community which included an additional $2M in road resurfacing and rehabilitation works on a number of our road networks. We will now be able to continue to deliver into the future.”

    Mayor Amanda Findley said, “It is never easy to seek an increase in rates; however it is important that we plan not only for the now but also for the future.”

    “In approving the increase IPART have acknowledged that renewing road infrastructure and delivering reliable services were high priorities for the community.”

    “This Council needs to ensure that it delivers facilities and services that will provide for our population, but also the population to come. We need to make smart financial decisions now.”

    “Without this approval Council would have continued to operate in a deficit and would not be to maintain the infrastructure and facilities that we currently have, let alone provide new able facilities.”

    “Despite recent statements about Council’s financial status, what this approval clearly demonstrates to our community is that this process was necessary and that it is reasonable.”

    “The announcement will now enable Council to provide upgrades at a number of sporting fields, undertake further streetscapes works, provide improvements to community facilities and provide new public amenities and improvements to local roads. “

    For further information please visit Council's get involved page.


  • Application Submitted to IPART

    6 months ago
    Istock 624031306
    Following extensive community engagement, Shoalhaven City Council submitted an application to the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) on 9 February 2018 seeking a Special Rate Variation.

    Council is seeking IPART approval to retain the 13.2% rate increase (approved as a one-off increase in 2017/18) as a permanent increase and for additional Special Rate Variations of 5.0% for each of the next three financial years: 2018/19; 2019/20 and 2020/21.

    IPART has now published Council's application which is available for viewing on its website - view Council's application.

    IPART will announce its determination on 15 May 2018.

    Following extensive community engagement, Shoalhaven City Council submitted an application to the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) on 9 February 2018 seeking a Special Rate Variation.

    Council is seeking IPART approval to retain the 13.2% rate increase (approved as a one-off increase in 2017/18) as a permanent increase and for additional Special Rate Variations of 5.0% for each of the next three financial years: 2018/19; 2019/20 and 2020/21.

    IPART has now published Council's application which is available for viewing on its website - view Council's application.

    IPART will announce its determination on 15 May 2018.
  • Council Adopts Amended Integrated Strategic Plan and Resolves to Apply for SRV

    8 months ago
    Srv 2017 fb tile
    At last Tuesday's Ordinary Meeting on 28 November 2017, Council resolved to adopt the amended Integrated Strategic Plan 2017 which was updated to more clearly outline the proposed Special Rate Variation (SRV). Council resolved to authorised staff to notify IPART of Council's intention to submit an SRV application in February 2018.

    Council will be applying to permanently retain the 13.2% special variation approved as a one-off increase in 2017/18 and for additional special variations (inclusive of an estimated rate peg of 2.5% pa) of 5% in 2018/19, 5% in 2019/20 and 5% in 2020/21.

    The SRV will be used to...

    At last Tuesday's Ordinary Meeting on 28 November 2017, Council resolved to adopt the amended Integrated Strategic Plan 2017 which was updated to more clearly outline the proposed Special Rate Variation (SRV). Council resolved to authorised staff to notify IPART of Council's intention to submit an SRV application in February 2018.

    Council will be applying to permanently retain the 13.2% special variation approved as a one-off increase in 2017/18 and for additional special variations (inclusive of an estimated rate peg of 2.5% pa) of 5% in 2018/19, 5% in 2019/20 and 5% in 2020/21.

    The SRV will be used to retain existing services, allow modest “new” asset spend and move towards meeting all Fit for the Future benchmarks.

    Council will formally submit the SRV application in February 2018, with IPART to determine the application in May 2018.

  • Council resolves to continue path of ensuring financial sustainability

    10 months ago
    Img 1390
    Shoalhaven City Council debated proposal for the continuation of the Special Rate Variation at an Extra Ordinary Meeting on Tuesday, 17 October 2017. Council resolved to move forward to continue the path of ensuring ongoing financial sustainability.

    The special rate proposal is as follows:
    1. That Council retain the 13.2% special rate variation, approved as a one-off increase in 2017/18 by IPART as a permanent increase.
    2. That an increase of 5% including the rate peg be proposed to be applied from 2018/19 until 2020/21.
    Mayor Amanda Findley said that Council must continue to ensure that...

    Shoalhaven City Council debated proposal for the continuation of the Special Rate Variation at an Extra Ordinary Meeting on Tuesday, 17 October 2017. Council resolved to move forward to continue the path of ensuring ongoing financial sustainability.

    The special rate proposal is as follows:
    1. That Council retain the 13.2% special rate variation, approved as a one-off increase in 2017/18 by IPART as a permanent increase.
    2. That an increase of 5% including the rate peg be proposed to be applied from 2018/19 until 2020/21.
    Mayor Amanda Findley said that Council must continue to ensure that it is financially sustainable into the future.

    “There is two very clear options for Council to adopt. Either we cut our services to reduce the amount of money we are spending or we increase the revenue that we receive each year.”

    “We can ask our community whether they would like their pools to be closed or their library services to be reduced or road maintenance to be reduced, but from what we have already heard, I am sure that the answer to this will be a resounding no.”

    “Our community want Council to continue to provide them with services and meet their needs.”

    “Our only option is therefore to seek additional revenue to ensure that we can meet ongoing community expectations.”

    “We have listened to the community and staff have put forward a recommended rate increase approach, that is significantly reduced from previous proposals.”

    “This will mean that we may not meet the State Government benchmarks required of us in the time originally nominated."

    “Further discussion will be occurring on this matter at a future Council meeting and there will be a process of ongoing community engagement that will need to occur.”