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Special Rate Variation (SRV)

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At an extraordinary council meeting held on 9 November 2023, Council endorsed the undertaking of community consultation on a potential application to the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) for a Special Rate Variation (SRV). You can watch the Council meeting or view the Business Paper here. 

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Message from the Mayor

At the extraordinary meeting of 9 November 2023, Council decided to commence community engagement for a proposed Special Rate Variation (SRV). 

Council’s preferred option is for an SRV of 10% per annum, for 3 consecutive years commencing 1 July 2024, resulting in a 33.1% cumulative increase.  

Council's Long Term Financial Plan (LTFP) indicates deficits for the next 10 years. Deficits will directly impact on Council's ability and capacity to maintain the standard of our current assets, services and community facilities, including: roads, bridges, culverts, parks, footpaths and buildings across the shire.  

Over the last 18 months Blayney Shire Council has undertaken a comprehensive review of its operations and service delivery. This has included two independent financial consultants undertaking a full review of our 10-year LTFP, Asset Management Plans and Capital Works Program.

Out of the process, it has been identified that rate income is needed to increase by approximately 33%. Three options exist to achieve this;

  1. 26.5% increase in 1 year, or
  2. 14% increase for 2 consecutive years, or
  3. 10% increase for 3 consecutive years.

In acknowledging the current cost of living pressures, Council’s preference is for a 10% per annum increase, to all rate categories for 3 consecutive years.

This has been a very difficult decision for Councillors who are seeking to be proactive in addressing this very important issue as early as possible and over 3 years, rather than a large singular increase.

Council is consulting with the community to discuss the proposed rate variation and encouraging everyone to be involved. There will be various opportunities to attend a drop-in session at various locations throughout the Blayney Shire over the next few weeks.

I and my fellow Councillors are looking forward to meeting with you, answering any questions and importantly receiving your input and feedback about the proposed SRV.


Scott Ferguson


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What is a Special Rate Variation (SRV)?

  • Each year, the NSW Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) sets a maximum percentage increase by which a council can raise its overall rate income, known as ‘rate peg’
  • For the current year (2023/24), the rate peg was 3.7%. This contrasts with CPI increases (inflation) over the last year which reached 7.8%
  • Councils can apply to IPART for approval to increase their income from ordinary rates in future years by more than the rate peg. This is known as a special rate variation.

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How much is the proposed increase?

How much is the increase

• The SRV increase would be applied equally across all rate categories.
• The SRV increase would ONLY apply to the rate amount (Base and Ad Valorem) and NOT the total amount on your rates notice.
• Specifically, the SRV would not apply to ANY Waste or Sewer charges as they are separate business units.

Click here to see the annual average increase for each rating category (Residential, Farming, Business, Mining).

Click here to use our rates calculator and see how much it will impact you. (You will need your current rates notice, calculator is created on excel, it may not work on mobile devices). 

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Background Information

Why do we need it?

The annual IPART increases have not been keeping up with inflation levels, creating a significant shortfall.

Our Long-Term Financial Plan (LTFP) projects multiple losses over the next ten years. This is not a sustainable position for Council and the community to be in.

The SRV will assist in addressing the forecast deficits in our LTFP. The SRV will ensure we have financial capacity to maintain the standard of our assets, services and community facilities, including: roads, bridges, culverts, parks, footpaths and buildings.

What has Council done already?

Over the last 18 months Council has had 2 specialist independent consultants review Council’s financial position.

Following these 2 external reviews, Council has implemented improvements and identified additional efficiencies to consider in the future.

Why now?

Council is not seeking an instant quick fix. Even with the proposed 3 year SRV a positive operating result is not forecast until 2028.

The longer we leave it, the larger and more severe a future SRV will have to be.

If Council does not increase its rates revenue through an SRV, it will not be able to adequately fund asset renewal and maintenance.

Projected Operating Result Graph 7.11.23

How do our rates compare to other Councils?

Our rates are generally comparable to similar councils. Click here to download the comparisons for each rating category.

Your Council NSW also has comparison data on councils across NSW. 

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Community Engagement

Council will be conducting community engagement from 10 November to 15 December 2023 on the proposed increase. A number of drop in sessions will be held across the Shire allowing residents to ask questions and provide feedback on the proposal. Feedback and questions can also be submitted via the online form below.

Drop in Sessions

Location Venue Date Time
Millthorpe Golden Memories Museum Thursday, 16 November 9am to 11am & 4pm to 7pm
Blayney Blayney Shire Community Centre Monday, 20 November 3pm to 6pm
Newbridge Brian Bennett Pavilion Wednesday, 22 November 4pm to 7pm
Lyndhurst Lyndhurst Hall Thursday, 23 November 4pm to 7pm
Blayney  Blayney Shire Community Centre  Monday, 27 November 9am to 11am & 4pm to 7pm
Neville Neville Hall Wednesday, 29 November 4pm to 7pm
Mandurama Mandurama Hall Thursday, 30 November 4pm to 7pm
Carcoar Carcoar School of Arts Friday, 1 December 4pm to 7pm
Millthorpe Golden Memories Museum  Monday, 4 December 4pm to 7pm

Following conclusion of that process, a report on the community engagement and feedback received via that process will be prepared and submitted to Council for consideration at an Ordinary Meeting scheduled for 23 January 2023. The due date for lodgment of an application to IPART is 5 February 2024. It should be noted that, should Council proceed in making application to IPART for an SRV, IPART will seek its own community feedback separate from Council’s processes and invite submissions from members of the public. This process is typically undertaken in the subsequent February/March.

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Last modified: 01 Dec 2023