2020/2021 Draft Budget Adopted by Council
The City of Kalamunda’s 2020/21 Budget has been adopted by Council setting a framework focused on financial sustainability, delivery of priority capital works projects and measures to assist those in the community suffering financial hardship because of COVID-19.
The Budget was adopted based on no increases in total rate revenue and no increase to City Fees and Charges. Other key elements include a COVID-19 crisis relief fund to help and support those community members suffering demonstrable financial hardship as a result of COVID-19 and cannot meet their Council rates and fees. Further, the budget contains funding for community focused projects such as road, parks, libraries as well as projects to assist community safety. For others the City has adopted a Financial Hardship Policy to assist others with financial stress pay off their rates.
The Budget also earmarks new capital works projects aimed at stimulating the economy, sustaining jobs and providing amenity for residents.
Mayor Margaret Thomas said Council understood the very real financial pressures experienced by many households and businesses at this challenging time. “We have frozen the total funding required from ratepayers to support the City’s operations to the same level as last year.”
“We have developed and funded, from rates revenue, a relief fund to be used to help and support those in the community who are at greatest financial stress because of COVID-19 and cannot meet their obligations to pay City rates and fees. “
“We have reduced expenditure on discretionary activities which have benefit to small numbers in the community, rather focusing on maintaining services the community has told us are important – roads, parks, safety, libraries and waste.”
“Unfortunately, while we have constrained ourselves to the same level of total rates revenue as last year, the majority of ratepayers will see a change to their rates based on the Valuer General’s recent revaluation of all metropolitan properties - despite lobbying for this to be deferred,” Cr Thomas said.
“While we cannot change these circumstances, and agree that it is confusing and frustrating for some, we will continue to work with ratepayers to ensure we move through these tough economic times together.”
“We know there are still many challenges ahead as we navigate our economic and social recovery, but Council will remain focused on supporting local people and local businesses for as long as it takes to ensure we make it through to the other side,” Cr Thomas said.
Every property has a different GRV / UV which is largely dependent on the size, location and style of property. These values are set by the Valuer’s General Office of the State Government over which the City has no jurisdiction. The City is provided with the details of the GRV / UV of each property. The Rate in the Dollar is then calculated by the City to develop a Total Rates Revenue to fund its operations. As said before this total rates revenue will be the same as last year. The State Government has decided to undertake the regular triennial revaluation in 2020 for all properties. This valuation is valued for the next three years. Ratepayers can ask for their valuation to be reviewed if they do not think it is accurate or would like the Valuer General to reconsider.