Australia Brisbane City Council 2021-22 budget sees average rates increase of 3.75pc

04:56  16 june  2021
04:56  16 june  2021 Source:   abc.net.au

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Brisbane City Council issues rate accounts quarterly. We offered deferral of rates and a freeze on increases for the first half of 2020-21. To assist those experiencing financial hardship, a 0 JobSeeker Rebate is still available to eligible ratepayers. If you are struggling to pay your rates and would like to make a payment plan, phone Council on 07 3403 8888.

Brisbane City Council is investing in our city ’s growth and providing relief for those who need it most as our city recovers from the impacts of coronavirus. Getting residents back on their feet and Brisbane open for business again will ensure our city remains a great place to live, work and relax for years to come. At home, we’re providing relief where it’s needed most, by delivering a six-month rate freeze for all ratepayers. While our relief package and Economic Recovery Taskforce will breathe life into our suburban precincts and get Brisbane businesses back on their feet and thriving again.

a man wearing a suit and tie smiling and looking at the camera: Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner has handed down his third council budget. (ABC News: chris Gillette) © Provided by ABC News Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner has handed down his third council budget. (ABC News: chris Gillette)

Brisbane ratepayers will see an average 3.75 per cent increase in their rates bill this coming financial year — an average rise of $15.65 per quarter or $1.20 per week.

It is the highest rates rise since 2016-17, when residents were hit with a 4.7 per cent increase, and follows a rates freeze last year during the pandemic.

But Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner said the rise still kept Brisbane's rates among the lowest in south-east Queensland, describing it as a "modest increase".

Cr Schrinner handed down a $3.6 billion budget this morning, emphasising the need for Brisbane to focus on infrastructure to handle its booming population and the possibility of hosting the 2032 Olympics.

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In order to meet Council 's commitments in getting you home quicker and safer, growing your Brisbane lifestyle, and planning for Brisbane ’s future, owner-occupied residential rates have risen by 2.5%. Commercial rate accounts will include a Commercial Waste Utility Charge of associated with the Queensland Government’s Waste Disposal Levy. Environmental Management and Compliance Levy (EMCL) remains at 5% of general rates which is a level that has not been changed since 1997-98.

City of Brisbane Act. Lord Mayor's message. Council information and rates . This is Brisbetter. Living in Brisbane newsletter. Council Annual Plan and Budget . Contracts that have been evaluated and awarded by Brisbane City Council over the past 12 months are listed.

He said Brisbane's average rates bill went down 0.5 per cent in 2020-21 after a six-month rate freeze and the redistribution of $15 million in savings from the Kingsford Smith Drive road project.

From next month, council fees and charges will also increase an average of 3.75 per cent, meaning the hourly rate for parking on a CBD street will rise 30 cents to $5.50.

Basics and challenges

The council took a $110 million hit to revenue this year, following a $145 million revenue loss during the pandemic last year, but recovered better than expected.

Net debt rose from $2.6 billion last year to $2.8 billion, averaging $2,557 per person — up from $2,032 per person.

Part of council's new borrowings include $453 million for a potential Olympics program covering possible infrastructure and land acquisitions.

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Rates 2021 to 2022 (£). Arrears of housing, fuel and water costs Council Tax etc. and deductions for Eligible Loan Deduction Scheme and Integration Loan Scheme. 3 . 75 . Recovery of overpayments (not contribution-based JSA or contribution-based ESA). 22 .20. Disability premium. Premiums. Increase of long-term Incapacity Benefit for age. Rates 2020 to 2021 (£).

Cr Schrinner said the budget was about "getting the basics right while addressing the challenges to come from population growth".

"We're determined for Brisbane not to be a victim of its own success.

"At the centre of this budget is a record three-year $3.6 billion investment program in infrastructure which will see roads, libraries, bridges, bikeways, footpaths and playgrounds built across our beautiful city."

Kerbside collection, paused for two years last year to claw back $13 million in revenue, will be brought back a year ahead of schedule given the council's stronger financial position, he said.

Infrastructure focus

The budget included a $1.2 billion infrastructure spend this coming financial year, up from more than $900 million last year.

Cr Schrinner said the majority of the funds was put into suburban projects, with $500 million focused on the CBD.

Public and active transport is another major focus for the budget, including $94,000 to plan a new CityGlider through Hamilton to Woolloongabba, $22 million for the planned ferry terminal at Howard Smith Wharves and terminal upgrades at South Bank, and $8.3 million for two new double-decker CityCats.

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Use these rates and thresholds when you operate your payroll or provide expenses and benefits to your employees. The National Minimum Wage is the minimum pay per hour almost all workers are entitled to by law. Use the National Minimum Wage calculator to check if you’re paying a worker the National Minimum Wage or if you owe them payments from past years. These rates apply from 1 April 2021 .

Key ongoing projects include Brisbane Metro, with $218 million allocated toward developing the at-grade Cultural Centre station, tunnelling under Adelaide Street and construction of the Rochedale Depot.

The Lord Mayor confirmed the council was speaking to the state government about getting additional funding to ensure the Cultural Centre station could be put underground.

Last year the council decided to only put in minor upgrades after a stoush with the government over its design.

Cr Schrinner said it was now clear if the Olympics went ahead, the station would be well over capacity unless money was put into putting the entire station underground as originally planned.

A total of $60 million has been allocated to the green bridges program, specifically fast-tracking the Kangaroo Point green bridge, with contractors expected to be announced this year.

A potential fifth bridge, however, remains uncertain in both location and possible funding.

Parks and recreation

Road projects include $27 million for the Indooroopilly roundabout upgrade, $90 million for citywide road maintenance and $23 million for Beams Road upgrades.

The council will also trial a FOGO (food organics, garden organics) pilot of waste disposal in green bins.

Parks and sport fields will also see money put to them, including $25 million to manage iconic parks such as the City Botanic Gardens, and $15 million for new parks across the suburbs.

A total of $19 million will be put toward sport parks, including the Nudgee Recreation Reserve.

"A $19.2 million investment into new sports parks will help inspire the next generation of young athletes," Cr Schrinner said.

"We're also investing $4.5 million into enhancing Brisbane Botanic Gardens in Mt Coot-tha and Sherwood Arboretum in preparation for its centennial anniversary."

The council's bushland acquisition program will continue with $7.3 million allocated this year, and Everton Park will have a new library.

Money has also been set aside for a Walter Taylor Bridge duplication feasibility study.

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