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Labor to Victorian ratepayers: pay more or face shortfall

Under new Labor policy announced this week, all public and community housing will be exempt from paying council rates, impacting up to 85,000 dwellings and leaving Victorian councils with a $140 million shortfall in funding.

Inevitably, this will force up rates and put council services at risk, while dramatically increasing the cost of living to the average Victorian.

Add to this the two big new taxes Labor has recently announced, the 50% ‘Windfall Gains’ Tax and the new 1.75% tax on new housing developments, and the cost of owning a home is out of control.

Shadow Minister for Local Government Richard Riordan said the new tax hinders our state’s ability to recover and rebuild.

“Victorians are paying the heavy price of an out of control Andrews Labor Government.”

“Thanks to two big new taxes on housing and an increase in rates, owning your own home is being made completely unaffordable and now essential council services are being threatened.

“The money must come from somewhere and in this case, it’s Victorian ratepayers and homeowners who will be the ones who will suffer.”

A report from the Municipal Association of Victoria (MAV) revealed that the councils most impacted are located where many households and homeowners are classified as already being in poverty.

Any further increase to rates could leave our most vulnerable Victorians unable to afford basic supplies and raises the risk of making more people dependent on public housing.

Mr Riordan said if passed, the new tax will mean that ratepayers will foot the bill for increased waste charges, fire services and community charges.

“Victorian local councils are already being squeezed on rates and cost shift, and this $140 million dollar a year slug will only hurt Victorian ratepayers.”

Richard Riordan MP

Shadow Minister for Resources

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