What are separate rates?

Separate rates are an amount levied on ratepayers in addition to general rates.

Section 154 of the Local Government Act 1999 (SA) allows Councils to declare a separate rate on rateable land within a part of the area of the council for the purpose of planning, carrying out, making available, supporting, maintaining or improving an activity that is, or is intended to be, of particular benefit to the land, or the occupiers of the land, within that part of the area, or to visitors to that part of the area.

Separate rates are widely used in SA and beyond to resource Incorporated Associations active in a commercial area to undertake marketing, promotion and business development activities in the way that shopping centres under single ownership do.

Separate rates may also be used to fund capital improvements, security, maintenance and other projects so long as there is an identified “particular benefit” to the area to which the rate applies.  This generally means that works funded by a separate rate are above the baseline level of service that is provided by a Council from general rate revenue.

The separate rate revenue is usually paid to an Association representing the interests of an area and is expended according to a strategic or business plan that stakeholders have had a hand in creating.

Why have separate rates?

Separate rates can be used to fund any number of activities so long as there is a “particular benefit”.

From Council’s perspective, separate rates can assist placemaking, precinct development and activation and the achievement of strategic objectives around creating a prosperous and liveable city. The option to levy separate rates is consistent with Council’s preference for partnerships, co-creation and identifying sustainable funding models that are matched to the needs and preferences of an area.

From a business community perspective, separate rates can provide a sustainable source of funding (potentially over a number of years) for implementing a stakeholder-led strategic or business plan for an area to ensure its growth and prosperity.

Why have a policy and operating guideline?

A Separate Rate Policy and a Separate Rate Operating Guideline will provide clarity, transparency, consistency and equity to the process of developing and considering proposals for separate rates, and implementing and managing any declared separate rate.

How can the Policy and Operating Guideline affect me?

At some time you may be a stakeholder in the separate rate consideration process, either as a ratepayer or as a member of an Association/representative body that is looking to have a separate rate declared by Council.

If there was a separate rate proposal that affected you as a stakeholder, the Policy and Operating Guideline would inform you of the process that you can expect to be followed by Council and the proponent (if not Council).

How do I provide my feedback?

There are a number of ways in which you can provide feedback:

Complete a Feedback Form
Complete the Feedback Form which asks specific questions about the project and provides an opportunity for general comments.
All written submissions must be received by 5.00 pm on Monday 19 August 2013 and should be addressed to:
Community Consultation
Draft Separate Rate Policy & Operating Guideline
GPO Box 2252, Adelaide SA 5001

You may also provide your feedback via

Phone: You are welcome to call Megan Fink on 8203 7561 if you have questions about the consultation or to provide your thoughts.

Email: You can direct your feedback by email to m.fink@adelaidecitycouncil.com

Online: Council has a dedicated website that provides an opportunity for quick and efficient online feedback. Visit yoursay.adelaidecitycouncil.com for information about the project and online ways to provide your comments. Alternatively comments can be emailed to yoursay@adelaidecitycouncil.com

Meet with a staff member: A relevant staff member will be available in Council’s Customer Service Centre, 25 Pirie St on Tuesday 23 July, Wednesday 24 July and Monday 5 August from 3pm to 5pm to answer any questions you may have about the Draft Separate Rate Policy and Operating Guideline and to receive your feedback

 

What happens to my feedback?

Your comments will be considered in recommending any changes to the Draft Separate Rate Policy & Operating Guideline for Council’s consideration.
The final content of the Separate Rate Policy will be a decision of Council.  Council will be asked to note the Operating Guideline.

Council is expected to consider a final version of the Separate Rate Policy and the Separate Rate Operating Guideline at its 24 September 2013 meeting.
As the process proceeds, updates will be provided through the YourSay Adelaide website.

How do I know my feedback has been received?

All written feedback will be acknowledged either by email or a letter so that you know your comments/feedback has been received. Please include sufficient contact information so that this may occur.

Who do I contact for more information?

For more information, please contact:

Megan Fink
Senior Advisor, Business & Residential Growth Policy
8203 7561 or m.fink@adelaidecitycouncil.com