City of South Perth drops rates below CPI for first time in 8 years

Stock image.
Stock image.

SOUTH Perth rates have been set below the Local Government Cost Index (LGCI) for the first time in eight years.

The City endorsed its budget 7-2 at a council meeting last week, adopting a 1.6 per cent rate increase.

Councillor Greg Milner promised to do everything in his power to encourage rates relief for residents when he was elected in October.

At the meeting, he said he felt the budget this year was a step in the right direction and had to commend City officers for their hard work in attempting to get things back on track for rate payers.

“This budget sees a rate increase below the national CPI increase of 1.9 per cent for the year ending March 2018, and it is below the national average wage growth of 2 per cent for the same period,” he said.

“Before this budget, the average yearly rate rise over the last eight years was 4.8 per cent.

“This budget brings that down to one-third of that average and delivers for all the South Perth businesses, families and residents who voted last year to keep rates low.”

City of South Perth Residents Association chairwoman Cecilia Brooke said the group was encouraged by the fact that the City set rates to be loosely aligned with inflation but would encourage the City to continue to work towards reduced expenditure by identifying better efficiencies within its operational processes and other areas with a view to keeping future rates rises linked to inflation

Ms Brooke also said she was encouraged that it seems more councillors were asking the difficult questions about the City’s cost structure and about the way it spent ratepayers’ money.