no grandparentTitle
Print

2017-18 Higher Cap Applications

Our decisions

The Essential Services Commission received and assessed five applications for higher caps. From this year, councils can apply for up to four years of higher caps. We received applications ranging from one to four years.

  Higher cap being sought (including Minister’s rate cap)
Council 2017-18 2018-19 2019-20 2020-21 Decision
Pyrenees Shire Council  3.5%  3.5%  na  na Approved
Hindmarsh Shire Council  4%  na  na  na  Approved
Borough of Queenscliffe  4.5%  na  na  na  Not Approved
Towong Shire Council  5.55%  5.55%  5.55%  5.55%  Approved
West Wimmera Shire Council  3.5%  3.5%  3.5%  3.5%  Approved

The overview paper summarises the five applications we received and the decisions made. It also outlines our approach to assessing applications and observations from the first two years of higher cap applications.

The five decision papers detail each council’s application and how we reached our decision.

We also publish each council’s applications, any additional information provided by councils on request, and expert advice which informed our decisions.

 

What this means for Councils

Councils must limit their average rate increase for 2017-18 to the rate cap set by the Minister for Local Government, or a higher cap approved by the Commission. The Minister set a 2 per cent rate cap for 2017-18.

Where we have approved a higher cap for 2018-19 or beyond, the council must limit its average rate increase in that year to the approved higher cap. Other councils will need to comply with future rate caps set by the Minister, or successfully apply for a higher cap.

More information on compliance is available in our guidance material.

What this means for ratepayers

In 2017-18, your rates may increase by more or less than the rate cap set by the Minister or a higher cap approved by the Commission. This is because the caps apply to the average rate in a municipality. The rate increase of individual properties may be different because:
  • the value of your property may increase or decrease relative to other properties in your municipality
  • changes in municipal charges and differential rates may affect some ratepayers and not others
  • special rates and charges, waste collection charges and the fire services levy are not subject to the rate cap.
More information on the impact on rates notices is available in the overview paper.

How we make our decisions

As required under the Local Government Act 1989, our assessment is based on the six legislative matters and the statutory objectives of the Fair Go Rates system . We take these into account and consider whether a council has demonstrated a long term financial need that should be funded through a higher cap. We also consider a council’s compliance with previous years’ caps (either rate caps set by the Minister or higher caps approved by the Commission).

The legislative matters are:
  • the proposed higher cap for each specified financial year
  • the reasons for which the council seeks the higher cap
  • how the views of ratepayers and the community have been taken into account in proposing the higher cap
  • how the higher cap is an efficient use of council resources and represents value for money
  • whether consideration has been given to reprioritising proposed expenditures and alternative funding options and why those options are not adequate
  • that the assumptions and proposals in the application are consistent with the council’s long term strategy and financial management policies set out in the council’s planning documents and annual budget.
The statutory objectives are:
  • to promote the long term interests of ratepayers and the community in relation to sustainable outcomes in the delivery of services and critical infrastructure
  • to ensure that a council has the financial capacity to perform its duties and functions and exercise its powers.
More information on how we make our decisions can be found in the overview paper.

 

Associated Documents


Overview and media release (2)
31 Jul 2017 Decisions on applications for a higher cap 2017-18 to 2020-21
31 Jul 2017 Media release – Higher cap applications finalised for 2017-18
West Wimmera Shire Council (10)
31 Jul 2017 West Wimmera Shire Council – Final Decision 2017
31 Jul 2017 West Wimmera Shire Council – Special Order
31 Jul 2017 West Wimmera Shire Council – Response to additional questions
31 Jul 2017 West Wimmera Shire Council – Response to request for further information
31 Jul 2017 West Wimmera Shire Council – Assistance with review of 2017-18 higher rate cap application (prepared by MosaicLab)
31 Jul 2017 West Wimmera Shire Council – Assistance with review of 2017-18 higher rate cap application (prepared by KJA)
31 Jul 2017 West Wimmera Shire Council – Assistance with review of 2017-18 higher rate cap application (prepared by Deloitte)
23 May 2017 West Wimmera Shire Council – Higher cap application
23 May 2017 West Wimmera Shire Council – Higher cap application attachments
23 May 2017 West Wimmera Shire Council – Higher cap application – Budget Baseline Information Template
Borough of Queenscliffe (11)
31 Jul 2017 Borough of Queenscliffe – Final Decision
31 Jul 2017 Borough of Queenscliffe – Supplementary community engagement information
31 Jul 2017 Borough of Queenscliffe – Budget Baseline Information Template
31 Jul 2017 Borough of Queenscliffe – Response to request for further information
31 Jul 2017 Borough of Queenscliffe – Assistance with review of 2017-18 higher rate cap application (prepared by Deloitte)
31 Jul 2017 Borough of Queenscliffe – Assistance with review of 2017-18 higher rate cap application (prepared by KJA)
31 Jul 2017 Borough of Queenscliffe – Assistance with review of 2017-18 higher rate cap application (prepared by MosaicLab)
31 May 2017 Borough of Queenscliffe – Higher cap application – Appendices G to P
31 May 2017 Borough of Queenscliffe – Higher cap application – Appendices Q to Y
31 May 2017 Borough of Queenscliffe – Higher cap application (including Appendices A to F)
31 May 2017 Borough of Queenscliffe – Higher cap application – Annual Report 2016
Hindmarsh Shire Council (11)
31 Jul 2017 Hindmarsh Shire Council – Final Decision
31 Jul 2017 Hindmarsh Shire Council – Special Order
31 Jul 2017 Hindmarsh Shire Council – Supplementary information
31 Jul 2017 Hindmarsh Shire Council – Assistance with review of 2017-18 higher rate cap application (prepared by MosaicLab)
31 Jul 2017 Hindmarsh Shire Council – Assistance with review of 2017-18 rate cap application (prepared by KJA)
31 Jul 2017 Hindmarsh Shire Council – Assistance with review of 2017-18 rate cap application (prepared by Deloitte)
17 May 2017 Hindmarsh Shire Council – Higher Cap Application
17 May 2017 Hindmarsh Shire Council – Higher cap application – Budget Baseline Information Template
17 May 2017 Hindmarsh Shire Council – Higher Cap Application – Appendices 1-3
17 May 2017 Hindmarsh Shire Council – Higher Cap Application – Appendices 4-6
17 May 2017 Hindmarsh Shire Council – Higher Cap Application – Appendices 8-10
Towong Shire Council (11)
31 Jul 2017 Towong Shire Council – Final Decision 2017
31 Jul 2017 Towong Shire Council – Special Order
31 Jul 2017 Towong Shire Council – Response to request for further information
31 Jul 2017 Towong Shire Council – Community Forums
31 Jul 2017 Towong Shire Council – Assistance with review of 2017-18 higher rate cap application (prepared by Deloitte)
31 Jul 2017 Towong Shire Council – Assistance with review of 2017-18 higher rate cap application (prepared by KJA)
31 Jul 2017 Towong Shire Council – Assistance with review of 2017-18 higher rate cap application (prepared by MosaicLab)
31 May 2017 Towong Shire Council – Higher cap application
31 May 2017 Towong Shire Council – Higher cap application – Appendices 1-5
31 May 2017 Towong Shire Council – Higher cap application – Appendices 6-10
31 May 2017 Towong Shire Council – Higher cap application – Appendices 11-15
Pyrenees Shire Council (11)
29 May 2017 Pyrenees Shire Council – Final Decision 2017
29 May 2017 Media Release – Commission approves Pyrenees application for higher cap
29 May 2017 Pyrenees Shire Council – Special Order
29 May 2017 Pyrenees Shire Council – Assistance with review of 2017-18 rate cap application (prepared by MosaicLab)
29 May 2017 Pyrenees Shire Council – Assistance with review of 2017-18 rate cap application (prepared by KJA)
29 May 2017 Pyrenees Shire Council – Assistance with review of 2017-18 rate cap application (prepared by Deloitte)
17 Apr 2017 Pyrenees Shire Council – Higher cap application – Budget Baseline Information Template
29 Mar 2017 Pyrenees Shire Council – Higher Cap Application – Appendices A-H
29 Mar 2017 Pyrenees Shire Council – Higher cap application – Appendices I-P (excluding appendix O)
29 Mar 2017 Pyrenees Shire Council – Higher Cap Application – Appendix O