Reprieve for rate payers?

Typical rates for Wyong 2018-19Typical rates for 2018-19

Central Coast ratepayers could be in for a reprieve with State regulatory changes that allow councils to delay sending out the first quarterly rates notice for 2020-21.

Central Coast Council has not yet confirmed if it will take advantage of the change, which would also give residents an extra four weeks to pay their next rates notice, due out in July.

The initiative is one of a range of amendments to local government regulations announced this week to allow councils to provide financial relief to businesses and residents during the coronavirus pandemic.

NSW Parliamentary Secretary for the Central Coast, Adam Crouch, welcomed the changes, which also allow councils to immediately waive or reduce fees for services such as food premise inspection and footpath usage for COVID-19 affected businesses, without the need to provide 28 days public notice.

“The changes will provide Central Coast Council with the flexibility to adjust to rapidly shifting circumstances,” he said.

“More importantly, they also give ratepayers more time to pay their rates notices and provide some financial support to businesses suffering from reduced cash flow or forced closure by waiving or reducing fees.”

The full range of amendments to local government regulations also provide councils with a one-month extension to adopt their 2020-21 operational plans and budgets and submit their 2019-20 audited financial statements and annual reports.

Central Coast Council has already undertaken to waive or refund footpath dining, food licence and temporary goods stall fees and fees associated with Health and Building Compliance activities for businesses such as hairdressers, nail shops, and tattoo parlours.

The moves were announced on March 31 in Phase One of the Council’s Stimulus package, alongside a string of other concessions.

Media release, Apr 17
Parliamentary Secretary for the Central Coast, Adam Crouch
Central Coast Council website, Mar 31