Rates

As a Council, we are committed to ensuring that you understand how your Rates and Charges are calculated. A brochure was distributed with your 2019/20 Rates and Valuation Notice and some commonly asked questions are below. If you still have questions about the calculation method for your property, please make contact with us.

How does Council determine my valuation? I haven’t improved my property recently! Property valuations are determined by independent professional valuers who are appointed by the Valuer General Victoria. The value is determined by actual sales of similar properties in our area. If the property market sees properties for selling for high or low prices the sales will be reflected in the next valuation cycle.

Do I have to accept this valuation? No, if you feel the valuation is inaccurate or unreasonable you can make an objection to the valuation. It is a simple process, however has strict timelines attached under legislation. Ratepayers are able to object to their valuation within 60 days of receiving their Annual Rates Notice. Please contact our friendly Property Revenue team once you have received your notice to start the process.

What are my rates paying for? Rates help to fund infrastructure and services such as the maintenance and renewal of local roads, street lighting, drainage and footpaths, as well as maternal and child health, aged care and environmental health. Council contributes to the maintenance and upkeep of playgrounds and other community infrastructure and also contributes to the Economic Development and Tourism services within the Shire.

So, if valuations are increasing that means Council is making more money. That’s not fair! The State Government ‘Fair Go Rates’ System means Councils are restricted from increasing their overall rate revenue by no more than the annual CPI cap. The cap applied to overall rate revenue collected by each Council, not individual properties.

Does everyone pay the same Rate in the Dollar? At Pyrenees Shire Council we have a Rating differential Scheme that applies different rates to each property based on what it is being used for. The Rating Strategy sets out the “rules” around each differential to ensure it is transparent and equitable for each property owner.

Every year Council determines how much revenue is required to be raised by rates, and divides this across the total values of all rateable properties to establish a general rate. The differentials are a percentage of this general rate.

The rate in the dollar is then applied against each individual property value to calculate how much each property owner pays.

Rating categories for the 2019/20 year are:

Type

Cents in $ on CIV  

Vacant Land - Rural /Residential - Less than 2 Ha

 1.2645

Vacant Land - Between 2Ha & 40ha

 0.9484

Vacant Land - Greater than 40Ha

 0.6322

Houses, Flats etc

 0.3998

Commercial (including shops, offices and factories)

 0.4098

Industrial

 0.4098

Farms (all types)

 0.3161

 Cultural & Recreational Land Act Properties *

 0.1999

* Properties that are classified as Cultural & Recreational Land have been granted a 50% rebate on the cents on the General Rate, as above.

What are these other charges on my Rates Notice? FSP…what? Council also charges a charge for waste services provided. These services include having your waste collected from your property, the use of Transfer Stations and environmental levies that Council is required to contribute to.

 After the tragic events of Black Saturday in 2009, the Royal Commission looked to change how the fire authorities were funded. In 2013/14 Council was made the responsible authority to collect the Fire Services Property Levy (FSPL) to ensure that all property owners were contributing to the fire authorities, not just those who had household insurance. This charge is set by the State Government and is not subject to the Rates Cap. Council is only the collection agency for this money, and it is passed along to the State Revenue Office quarterly.

I am experiencing some troubles in paying – can we work something out? Of course we can – our team are here to assist you. Give them a call and we will come to an arrangement that works for everyone. All information is kept confidential.

Can I have a say on the future of how Rates are distributed? Of course, we would love to hear from you!!! Currently we are wanting to hear opinions of how the amendments to the 2019 Rating Strategy will impact ratepayers. Submissions can be made up until 4pm on July 10, 2020. Please contact our Property Revenue Officer to have a chat about it.

Council will also be reviewing its Rating Strategy prior to June 30, 2021 and will be conducting public consultation during the process! We welcome all feedback regarding the proposals, and take it on board where we can. In 2018 we made a number of changes to the previous Rating Strategy based on public feedback and wish to further refine this in 2020!

Council does not currently levy a Municipal Charge.

When are my rates due? Rates can be paid annually by a lump sum or by instalments. If paying in full, payment must be received by 15th February. Ratepayers wishing to pay by instalments need to have the first instalment paid by 30th September. If not, all monies become due by 15th February.

Instalments

The option to pay by instalments is only exercisable prior to the due date for payment of the first instalment.

For those paying their rates by instalments, the due dates are:

1st Instalment - 30th September

2nd Instalment - 30th November

3rd Instalment - 28th February

4th Instalment - 31st May

Unpaid rates will incur interest at 10.0%.


Objections  

The Council Rate Notice also serves the purpose of a Valuation Notice. Ratepayers have the right under Section 37 of the Valuation of Land Act 1960 to object to the valuation applied to their property on a number of specific grounds.

Objections must be lodged on the prescribed form within 2 months of the issue of the rate notice. Council is unable to accept Objections prior to the Rates Notice being issued.

Residential Objections (including vacant land) Objection-form-Residential.pdf

Commercial/Industrial Objections Objection-form-Commercial-Industrial_1.pdf

Farm ObjectionsObjection-form-Rural.pdf

If you require assistance with the objection process, or wish to request assistance with an Application Form please contact our Rates Department on (03) 5349 1100.