The Shire of Broome levies rates each year to fund Council's services. These include maintenance of foreshore and parks, library services, roads, health, sanitation, building control and operation of recreational facilities.
Anyone owning residential or commercial property within the Shire of Broome is a ratepayer and is required to pay rates. Some government bodies, educational and registered charitable organizations are exempt from paying Council rates.
The 2016/17 Rates Notices were issued by the Shire on 19 July 2016 (with payment due by 23 August 2016) due to Council adopting the 2016/2017 Annual Budget on 30 June 2016 to provide a full 12 months for the Shire to achieve an ambitious portfolio of significant projects such as the:
- $4M Kimberley Regional Offices – New building construction
- $1.8M Kimberley Regional Offices – existing tenancy fitout refurbishment
- $3.2M BRAC – Renewal of pool and plant and equipment replacement
- $181K BRAC - Multi-Sport Hard Court Resurfacing
- $320K Community Storage Shed – Construction of new building
- $200K Regional Resource Recovery Park – new site investigations preliminary work
- $146K Refuse Services Renewal – Bin renewal program
- $550K Buckley’s Road Waste Facility Closure capital works program
- $82K Broome Town site Coastal Hazard Risk Management and Adaptation Plan
- $65K Community Services– Review of Not for Profit accommodation and capacity needs
- $900K Crab Creek Road Upgrade
- $740K Stewart Street Upgrade
- $1.2M Hamersley St and Napier Terrace Intersection Upgrades
- $740K Urban Roads Reseal Program
- $278K Norman and Owens Street Connections Works
- $85K Various Footpaths Capital Works
- $70K Street lighting Capital Works
- $550K Key Worker Housing Accommodation
- $400K Reserve allocation for future Jetty to Jetty Revetment progression
- $200K Reserve allocation for future Itinerant Camping project progression
In macro dollar terms, Council will invest $21.1 million in asset construction/acquisition, upgrades and renewal activities including;
- $8.3 million for buildings works
- $10.3 million for roads, drainage, parks and other infrastructure works
- $1.6 million of fixed and mobile plant and equipment acquisitions
- $906K for Information, Communication Technology, other furniture and equipment acquisition.
- Funding for the above capital activities is derived from:
- Grants $6.5M
- Developer contributions $400K
- Sale of assets of $501K
- Borrowings $4.3M
- Municipal funds $3.4M; and
- $6.1M reserve funds
Council may adopt its annual budget during the period from 1 June in a financial year to 31 August in the next financial year as prescribed by section 6.2(1) of the Local Government Act 1995 (LGA). By Council adopting the 2016/2017 Annual Budget at its Ordinary Meeting of Council held 30 June 2016, this has brought forward the issuing date of the rate notices. Last year, Council adopted its 2015/2016 Annual Budget at its Ordinary Meeting of Council held 13 August 2015 and the 2015/2016 rate notices were issued from 31 August 2015.
Council have provided the same amount of time from the issue date of the rate notice for payment to be due. The LGA prescribes under section 6.50 that the due date for the payment of rates should be no earlier than 35 days from the issue date on the notice. Should ratepayers elect to pay by instalment by the first due date being, 23 August 2016 for the 2016/2017 financial year, they have been provided with an interval of not less than 2 months between instalment due date. Should any ratepayer experience any difficulty in making the payment options provided on the rate notices, they should contact Shire officers before 23 August 2016 to make a payment arrangement.
What do I get for my Rates?
The significant contributions from Broome’s ratepayers in the community is acknowledged. Rates are a property tax that contribute to the orderly running of your community and fund the delivery of services and facilities to the local district. Every area benefits from capital investment and maintenance programs over the years and rates are the Shire’s primary funding source. Rates make up just over a third of the total Shire expenditure on projects and services for the community each year. The Shire supplements rates income by seeking alternative funding sources to ensure we are delivering the best value for money we can. The objective of rates is to make up the shortfall between budgeted income from other sources (e.g. fees and charges, licences, government grants etc.) and proposed expenditure. Local governments have limited ability to generate income other than rates.
The annual budget deficit to be funded by ratepayers remains a constant challenge during cycles in the economic climate where Council’s adopted long term financial plan assumes continued population growth. As more residents move to Broome and residential, tourism and commercial subdivisions expand, this results in increased demand and growth in Council’s services and infrastructure. All properties should contribute a fair amount to the annual budget deficit through a taxation system that is based on the principles of fairness and equity, transparency, objectivity, consistency and administrative efficiency as per the guidelines set by the Department of Local Government and Communities. The annual budget deficit represents the costs to deliver goods and services, minus any other revenue, to all members of the district in delivering the function of local government, being good governance for the benefit of all residents and visitors to the district. Rates are not a fee for service, measurable against what individual properties receive or do not receive from the Shire. A local government is to have regard to the needs of the inhabitants of the district as a whole as prescribed by the LGA and FMR.
When you purchase or build a property in the Shire of Broome it has been provided in accordance with a town planning and development framework and guidelines within a network of infrastructure which has undergone an extensive subdivision planning review process to provide appropriate levels of amenity and neighbourhood design. Your property will be built according to the Building Code of Australia under a building permit issued by the Shire. The work we do in overseeing the built environment protects your property investment, but comes at a cost.
From the moment you leave your property you are enjoying the use of the services Council provides – roads, pathways, parks, street lighting, bins, public health services, playing fields, community facilities and much more. These are all areas the Council either funds directly or facilitates in some capacity to ensure our community has what they need.
The 2016/2017 annual budget and associated rates raised to fund Council’s operations and initiatives have been adopted with the view to maintaining current levels of service as an investment in the community despite the current economic conditions, if not to also seek to increase this if possible as per Council’s 2015-2030 Long Term Financial Plan. These projects and Council’s annual programs and services were included in the budget with regard for Council’s 2015-2019 Corporate Business Plan (CBP), 2015-2030, Long Term Financial Plan (LTFP), Workforce Plan, Draft Information Communication and Technology (ICT) Plan, Asset Management Plans and Plant Replacement Program. In 2016/2017, including capital expenditure above, the Shire is investing a total of $59.7M into the Broome and wider community. In terms of operational expenditure, the key statutory programs and activities of the Shire include:
- Recreation & Culture - $10.3M is budgeted for the Shire’s community facilities, public library, swimming areas and beaches, cultural events, Civic Centre and the BRAC
- Community Amenities - $9.5M is budgeted for rubbish and recycling collection, pre-cyclone clean up, waste management, storm water drainage, town planning, environmental protection and litter control.
- Economic Services - $1.6M is budgeted for economic initiatives, provision of tourism and visitor services, building control and swimming pool inspections and caravan parks facilities.
- Transport - $8M is budgeted for maintenance of roads, kerbing, footpaths, car parks, verges, parking control, street lighting, bus shelters and facilities and flood damage.
- Other Properties & Services - $2.7M is budgeted for the KRO redevelopment, community facilities, cafe/restaurants, Records and ICT management, corporate services, private works and other infrastructure operations.
- Governance - $2.8M is budgeted for civic and citizenship activities, community sponsorship programs, promotion and engagement, Sister City relations, and youth development.
- Housing - $600K is budgeted for acquisition of housing for staff attraction and retention funded from grants and leasing recovered in full from staff contributions.
- Law, Order & Public Safety - $1.3M is budgeted for legislative compliance and local laws enforcement, ranger operations, fire prevention, emergency planning and services and animal control.
- Education & Welfare - $837K is budgeted for community development programs, community safety, crime prevention, not for profit organisation support and community engagement and events.
- Health - $750K is budgeted for public health regulation and inspections, food premise licensing, mosquito and pest control and commercial pool inspections.
- General Purpose Funding - $244K is budgeted for management of the Shire’s grants, rates review initiatives and debt/revenue management and control.
In order to achieve all of the above commitments and strategic objectives as per Council’s integrated planning framework, Council have implemented a rating policy of a 2% general rate increase as opposed to a 5% increase as per the Long Term Financial Plan, for the 2016/2017 Annual Budget. This funding strategy reflects the economic pressures experienced by members of the community and takes into consideration the current economic climate while still maintaining existing levels of service delivery and infrastructure under this funding constraint. The plans identify Council’s commitment to the overall good governance of the members of the district. This includes significant asset management commitments to maintain and safeguard the appropriate condition and service levels provided by Council’s assets worth over $400 million which support Council’s ability to deliver services to the community. This year, Council will commence a full review of the Strategic Community Plan, Corporate Business Plan, and Long Term Financial Plan, inclusive of community consultation.
PAYMENT OF RATES
Options for payment of Rates are as follows:
Payment in full by 23rd August 2016
- Payment by 2 Instalments as per Rates Notice
First Instalment Due Date: 23rd August 2016
Second Instalment Due Date; 10th January 2017
- Payment by 4 Instalments as per Rates Notice
First Instalment Due Date: 23rd August 2016
Second Instalment Due Date: 25th October 2016
Third Instalment Due Date: 10th January 2017
Forth instalment Due Date: 14th March 2017
- Alternative Payment Arrangement
If the instalment options shown on the Rate Notice are not suitable, ratepayers may submit an alternative payment proposal.
Please contact Shire of Broome on (08) 9191 3456
A Payment arrangement fee of $45.00 will be charged. Please note that penalty interest @ 11% PA will continue to accrue on the property as long as any amount is due on the account. A proposed Payment Arrangement is not approved until it has been confirmed in writing by the Shire.
Legal Action for Non-Payment
Legal action for recovery may proceed where no election has been made to pay by an instalment option or alternative payment arrangement by the due date. Costs associated with legal action are recoverable from the Ratepayer and will be added to the account.
In accordance with the requirements of the Local Government Act (1995) and the Local Government Financial Management Regulations (1996), Council offers ratepayers a choice of payment of rates by either one, two or four instalments.
To offset the cost of offering the instalment payment option, the Local Government Act allows Council to charge a $7.00 Administration Fee on the second, third and fourth instalment plus interest at the prescribed rate on all instalment payments.