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the Breeze

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On the 27th June, a Special Budget Meeting will be held at Redland City Council chambers which will hand down the budget for the next financial year. 

Last month I speculated that there will be a rate increase and now I firmly believe that the rate rise will be significant, and that will hit you in the pocket. 

But it’s not just the increase in the General Rate that is concerning as it is also the other levies and fees that go along with it which really adds up to a bill shock for many. 

Take note of the Environmental and Coastal Management levy which is currently $43 per quarter ($172 per annum) from every household which adds up to an enormous amount of revenue for the Council and also the Landfill Remediation Levy which is nearly $60 per annum from every household. 

Expect a lift in the budget for the General Rate and Levies as inflation impacts everyone including Council. It is important to keep revenue to Council at a sufficient level so they can continue to deliver services and infrastructure which the community expect. 

The big question is will the revenue increase be reasonable or not?

Leadership will be on display when the Mayor hands down her budget after being elected in on her campaign of Redlands already paying far higher rates than we should.

I watched the Council’s May General Meeting and I felt like the circus had again come to town. 

The agenda item related to the decision of supporting the Redlands White Water Venue. 

This multi-use facility not only caters for the Olympics and water recreation for the community but will be a swift water training facility unlike anything in the Southern hemisphere. 

It will be used for emergency services training for groups throughout Australia and internationally. 

The State and Federal Government is to be congratulated for fully funding this centre. 

The financial assessments show that this will be an ongoing profitable facility which will help fund other Council projects. 

That’s a far better option than having to keep hitting the rate payer for everything. 

Fortunately six Councillors (including our own) supported the project and confirmed Council’s commitment and continued support for the Redland Whitewater Centre



Despite the inflation rate in Australia slowly coming down, we are now told that interest rates may not be reduced as previously predicted by the financial pundits, thanks to the efforts of the Australian Government.

Apparently, there are now concerns over the impact from some wage rises, some tax rate cuts and major Government spending.

Economist Saul Eslake of Corinna Economic Advisory – who’s on the advisory panel of the Australian Parliamentary Budget Office – says the March quarter Consumer Price Index data “should have put paid to whatever hopes others had that the RBA might cut rates this year”.

What amazes us here on our tiny islands off the coast of SE Queensland, that in all the financial comments heard and said, no mention is ever made of how Australians go about spending their ‘lavish’ incomes.

Our island community has the lowest household incomes per capita than anywhere in Australia.

We also have the highest aged care population, as well as some of the highest unemployment figures as well.

Whilst home and land prices are lower here than the rest of Australia, that is about as good as it gets. 

All other island pricing are relatively high due to freight costs that have to come over the water that separates us from the mainland.

Other ‘catalysts’ that amazingly impact the rate rise arguments are the price of fuel and the rising costs of electricity.

These have not even been mentioned by the financial ‘pundits'.

It is our observation from all these ‘indicators’, none of them actually have anything to do with the general Australian population.

All of them are driven’ by the Government of the day.

And, as a result, the one’s who get to ‘pay' the price for the Government’s management of the country and the economy, are ordinary, everyday Australians who may happen to have a home mortgage.

As for fuel and electricity, Governments will never criticise the price of fuel because more than half what we pay at the bowser is Government revenue (fuel excise).

Electricity is in a state of crisis and increase because of Government policy in relation to ‘renewables’ and the badly planned transition from coal and gas to solar, wind and hydrogen.

The transition process is way ahead of the technology; which will continue to contribute to higher prices. A more steady approach would have allowed a fairer and more reasonable outcome.

And let’s not even mention the real Government dept in this observation, which is in the billions and includes all Federal and State Governments. It is likely to be too scary!



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