Byron facing second big rates hike
BYRON Shire residents face rate hikes ranging from $40 to more than $100 a year after the council voted in its second major increase in as many years.
As residents and businesses continued the clean-up following last week's floods, Byron councillors on Tuesday unanimously backed a 9.5 per cent rate rise.
The increase, which comes on the back of a 15.5 per cent increase last year, would have been higher if the NSW Government had not squashed the council's original plan for a 13.5 per cent rise.
Under the increase, a property at Shara Boulevard, Ocean Shores, valued at $196,000, would have its rates lifted from $464.56 to $508.69.
At the other end of the scale, rates on a property at Childe Street, Belongil, valued at $518,000, would jump from $1201.35 to $1315.49.
Byron mayor Jan Barham later said she saw no problem backing the rise so soon after the flood which caused damaged to homes right across the shire.
Cr Barham said the increase was part of an on-going program to lift rates in Byron Shire to the same level as the rates set by other councils.
Combined with ending the Mullumbimby council chambers debt, the rate rise would give the Byron Shire Council the cash to improve and build much sought after public infrastructure, such as community halls and bike paths.