The Andrews Labor Government has appointed a Commission of Inquiry to consider the efficiency and effectiveness of the Rural City of Ararat’s rating strategy.
The decision comes after a request for Government intervention was made by the Victorian Farmers Federation and, importantly, the Mayor of Ararat.
The draft budget proposes to bring to an end all differential rates in the city, increasing the total rates paid by farms to over 50 per cent.
While the Rural City of Ararat, like all councils, is entitled to make its own decision on differential rates, changes this extreme deserve more careful consideration.
As a result, the Government will appoint a Commission of Inquiry under the Local Government Act.
The Commissioners will be announced next week and will be required to report on the consultative process carried out to develop the budget and rating strategy, and the administrative capacity of the City, by the 1 August.
They will also consult the ratepayers of Ararat on the Council’s budget and rating strategy, and make recommendations to the Councillors and the Government.
Reviewed 19 August 2020