Ratepayer association raises concerns

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Ratepayer association raises concerns

The Mount Gambier and District Residents and Ratepayers Association has raised concerns about the City Council’s proposed 10.24% rate rise and urged elected members to reconsider their decision.

Association chairperson Di Ind said members held grave fears about the size of the proposed increase, which they believed could have far reaching impacts on local residents.

“The association is deeply concerned about the proposed increases of both rates and waste charge that was presented at the City of Mount Gambier council on May 21 meeting,” Ms Ind said.

“We are particularly concerned about the financial stress this will have on people on fixed or low incomes, families, pensioners and small business owners who are all doing it very tough in this current cost of living crisis.

“I attended the meeting in person along with other members of our association. I was very pleased to see the gallery overflowing with other concerned community members who witnessed our elected council members speak of their support of the proposed budget and plans.

“I note the incredible amount of work and preparation that has been put into this document by council staff. We hope that this document is not a tried-and-true process used by governments to put a proposal together that will receive huge amounts of backlash and negative feedback and then change the proposed document and say they have listened to community concerns and look to reduce the proposed increases.

“We hope our elected members of council understand the level of community concern and re-evaluate their position based on the feedback that will be provided to them. Our social media page has received a phenomenal reach of over 10,000 in the past couple of days on this topic alone. Our community is very concerned with what is being proposed.”

Ms Ind said the association strongly encouraged members of the community to contact the council to directly to provide their feedback once they have read the proposed plan, available via the council’s website.

“The due date for any feedback or concerns must be completed before June 13, 2024,” she said.

“A special open council meeting has been scheduled for June 18 at 5pm when members of the public are welcome and can ask questions and make submissions on the draft proposal. This process is a very important part of the consultation process required by council.

“The MGDRRA has decided to hold a public meeting on Wednesday, June 12 from 5.15pm to listen to community members concerns and we will collate the comments and present to the City of Mount Gambier on behalf of the association. Anyone who is interested in attending please RSVP to our email address mgrrassoc@gmail.com and we will advise you of the location.”

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