Community bucks at rate increases

RATEPAYERS are rallying together in an attempt to lobby local government to stop the increase on soaring rates in the region.

The Whitsunday Ratepayers Association has grown from a dormant group with only 25 members to a group of more than 100 members in just a few weeks.

The association amalgamates two or three associations incorporated in the mid 70s and 90s and now has an online presence.

Association secretary Tony Moscato said the aim of the group was to lobby the Whitsunday Regional Council for an immediate rates freeze and a further rates capping at 5-10 per cent maximum per year.

Mr Moscato is a former councillor on the Whitsunday Shire Council. He served on the former Council from 1985 until 1988 and again from 1991 until 1994.

“We will lobby to freeze rates and then look at how rates are calculated,” he said. “And we hope to get council to understand there must be some capping.

“This seems to be the consensus [from members].”

The online forum for members has already fired up some strong conversations.

The unanimous attitude on the forum is that Whitsunday rates have “skyrocketed” and that the residents must stick together to fight it.

One comment added to the forum yesterday from Cannonvale resident Ailsa Collins reflects the general feeling of forum members.

“I think it is absolutely necessary to revive the association again, at once,” she wrote.

“The last couple of years have seen my rates increase to over $3,000 per year which is ridiculous.

“Where do I sign up and pay my $2?”

People interested in becoming a member of the association can contact Tony Moscato on 0407 200 847.

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