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Pokies under rate revision

POKIE machine building owners will no longer receive rate discountsunder a proposed change in Hepburn Shire Council’s draft rating strategy.
Nanjing Night Net

The draft strategy, which is open for public consultation until May 19, has proposed buildings containing gaming machines would no longer be classed as “recreational properties” and instead be classed as “commercial”.

Where a property is partly outdoor space and partly containing gaming machines, the rating will be split.

Also, under the proposed changes, sections of properties where telecommunication towers are locatedwill be chargedthe commercial rate rather than the same rate as the residential or farm land hosting them.

The proposed changes arepart of the council’s latest update to its rating strategy, which was last updated in 2011, and aims to achieve rate revenue equity.

General Manager Corporate ServicesGrant Schuster said proposed changes to the rating strategy wouldn’t change or increase council revenue, but rather the amount of income contributed by each property within the shire.

Following a series of community consultations, the council has made otherproposed changes to the rating strategy including that mixed use properties can be rated less than commercial or industrial properties, reducing waste management charges for vacant properties, and introducing two new property types –commercial vacant and industrial vacant.

Councillor Sebastian Klein said the council had already “been through the ringer” in previous years with adopting an equitable rating system, and this new draft document was more about “tweaking it so we can get better outcomes”.

Councillor Bill McClenaghan expressed concern the council was sending out two large documents at the same time for public consultation –the draft rating strategy and the proposed budget.

The draft is available to be viewed at council offices in Daylesford, Creswick and Clunes, at libraries and online.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.