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Rates
Rating Policy and Strategy

Council acknowledges that rates constitute a system of taxation for Local Government purposes, as required by the Local Government Act 1989. Council uses Capital Improved Value (CIV) as the basis for determining its rates on the grounds that it provides the most equitable distribution of rates across the municipality.

Council will regularly review and adopt its Rating Policy and Strategy 2014-17 to provide clear information to ratepayers about Council's rating structure. Council considers that each differential rate will contribute to the equitable and efficient carrying out of Council functions.

Our Rating Strategy has been implemented by the joint application of Council’s Rating Policy and the Rating Procedures. The Policy sets the principles for Council to levy and collect rates due on properties in the Shire.


Rates, Charges and Levies for 2016-17

RATES AND CHARGES ARE PAYABLE BY INSTALMENTS

The Mansfield Shire Council resolved that all rates and charges will be payable by four instalments; the due dates for 2016-17 being

1.  30 September 2016
2.  30 November 2016
3.  28 February 2017
4.  31 May 2017

Any ratepayer who may be experiencing difficulties in meeting their instalment payments is encouraged to contact Council's Revenue Unit on 5775 8555 to discuss alternative payment arrangements. This will prevent the matter being placed in the hands of Council’s Debt Collection Agency, saving the ratepayer extensive legal costs.

Council raises its revenue from rates by applying a Municipal Charge to all properties, and an ad-valorem rate (cent in the dollar) to the Capital Improved Value of all rateable land. Council declares a Municipal Charge each year to cover some of the administrative costs of the Council.

The charge is a fixed amount and applies to all properties within the Shire. The total revenue received from the Municipal Charge must not exceed 20% of the sum of the total revenue from general rates plus the Municipal Charge.

Where a single farm enterprise is conducted on several properties, only one Municipal Charge is payable for that farm enterprise. To apply for the single farm enterprise exemption, please complete and return the Application for Municipal Charge Exemption form.

The Municipal Charge for the 2016-17 financial year has been set at $265.30 per rateable property.
Differential Rates
The balance of rate revenue is raised by applying a rate in the dollar to all the Capital Improved Values (CIV) of rateable properties. As Council utilises the Differential Rating system, there may be different rates in the dollar for each separate rating category. The rating categories presently in use are – Farmland, Residential, Rural Residential, Vacant Land, and Commercial. 


2016-17 
Residential   0.002670
Rural Residential 0.002484
Farmland 0.001931
Vacant land 0.003701
Commercial 0.003752

If you believe your property should be classified as ‘Farm Land' as defined in the Valuation of Land Act 1960, you may apply to the Council by completing and returning the Application to Rate Property as Farmland form.

Valuations
All properties in the Shire are valued every two years by a contract valuer. Tenders are called every four years and the successful tenderer is appointed to return two General Valuations. All properties have presently been valued with a level of value (market value) date of 1 January 2016.

Property owners have a right under the Valuation of Lands Act 1960 to object to the valuation of their property. Objection forms are available below and must be lodged within two months of the issue of the rate notice.
Amalgamation of property
If you receive multiple rates notices and the properties/parcels of land share a boundary fence and are owned by the same person you may amalgamate your property.  This would enable you to receive only one Rate Notice. Please complete the Application to Amalgamate Properties form and return to Council. 
Concessions are available to low income Victorians experiencing difficulty in paying their council rates, water, gas and electricity bills. Discounts are available on essential services to ease the financial burden for low income Victorians. For each concession and/or benefit, there is an eligibility criterion.

Concessions programs are designed to ensure eligible cardholders have access to essential services. Eligible concession card holders may receive a reduction of Council rates up to the maximum amount of $218.30, as set by the Victorian Government for 2016-17, and $50 for Fire Services Property Levy rebate.

Pensioners who received a rate rebate last year, and who are still eligible, will find the current rebate has been calculated and deducted automatically from their rate account. If this is the case, no further application is required.

Eligible cardholders (Pensioner Concession Card or Gold TPI or War Widow Cards) who reside at the property and did not receive a rebate last year, or who do not have the concession shown on their rate account, must make application on the required form by 30 June 2017

To apply for the Pensioner Concession on your rates and charges, please complete and return the Pensioner Concession Application Form. The concession does not apply to Health Care Card holders.
  • Pensioner Rate Rebate 2016-17 - $218.30
  • Fire Services Property Levy Rebate 2016-17 - $50.00
Late payment of quarterly instalments will accrue penalty interest from the due date of the instalment and continues to accrue daily until the account is paid in full.
At this time, the penalty interest rate is 9.5% per annum which is set by the Victorian Government.

From 1 July 2013 the state government implemented a Fire Services Property Levy.  This is a property based levy collected through Council Rates. The FSPL is made up of two parts: 
  • A fixed charge on each property; and
  • A variable charge based on the property’s capital improved value
Details of the FSPL are included on the council annual valuation, rates and charges notice including how the levy has been calculated. The Fire Services Property Levy Brochure will provide more information, or you may visit firelevy.vic.gov.au 

Trust for Nature - Conservation Covenant Rate Rebate
A conservation covenant is a voluntary agreement between Trust for Nature and the landowners. It is placed on the title of the land to ensure that the natural bushland is permanently protected. The Council offers a rate rebate to landowners who register a Trust for Nature conservation covenant on their property. 

The rebate acknowledges the long-term commitment of these landowners to conserving the biodiversity on their land. Landowners will receive a rebate of up to $25 per hectare of land placed under covenant. The total rebate will depend on the rated value of the covenanted area, with a minimum payment of $50 and a maximum payment of $500. For further information on conservation covenants, visit the Trust for Nature website

Changes of Address
All changes to your contact details must be lodged in writing. Please complete and return the Change of Address form or email council@mansfield.vic.gov.au with your changes.

If you would like your Rates Notice emailed to you, contact the Revenue Unit on 03 5775 8555.
Reprinting of Rates Notices
A reprinting fee of $6.00 (GST free) will be charged per Rates Notice. For more information see Adopted Budget Fees & Charges 2016-17.

 
Payment options can be found on Payments page.
 
Overpayment of Rates or Debtor Invoices 
If you have overpaid your Rates and/or Debtor invoices and wish to receive a refund, please complete the Overypayment - Request for Refund Form (which can be accessed from the Download Files section of this page) and email it to rates@mansfield.vic.gov.au 

I am having difficulties paying my rates. Can I make part payments?
A payment arrangement may be organised by calling the Revenue Unit (5775 8555). All requests are treated confidentially and once an agreement is reached a letter outlining, and confirming the arrangement will be sent to you. Establishing a payment plan will help prevent costly legal action for recovery of rates from commencing.

People from all walks of life can find themselves with money problems.
Financial counsellors are non-judgmental, qualified professionals who provide information, support and advocacy to people in financial difficulty. Mansfield Shire Council offers this service which is free, independent and confidential . Appointments Required PH: (03) 5775 8569 or alternatively Contact Money Help on 1800 007 007