A petition opposing Clarence Valley Council’s application to the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) for a 6.5 percent rate rise for each of the next five years was launched on Monday December 14.
The petition, which has been organised by online Facebook group, The Clarence Forum, in conjunction with other groups across the valley, opposes the cumulative 37 per cent increase ratepayers will bear if the application is approved.
The petitions will be accessible in shops and businesses throughout the Clarence Valley until the middle of February 2016, the forum’s convenor John Hagger said.
“Submissions to IPART must be lodged at a yet to be announced date sometime towards the end of February or early March,” he said.
“There will also be volunteers door-knocking during that time.
“It is hoped that many thousands of local people signing the petition will result in the IPART refusing permission for council’s rate rises.
“The Clarence Forum will be posting regular updates of where people can sign the petition and see the numbers of people who have signed.”
The Petition states: WE, the undersigned, call upon IPART to refuse the Special Rate Variation sought by Clarence Valley Council.
WE live in a low socioeconomic area and Residents and Businesses do Not have the capacity to pay the proposed 37% Rates Increase, cumulative over the next five years.
WE note that Clarence Valley Council has rejected alternative options to Rates increases.
WE note that Clarence Valley Council has Not honestly explained the long term impact of the proposed Rates Increases on the local Community.
The Clarence Forum’s ‘About’ page states: “This is a group dedicated to providing a platform for ideas dedicated to enriching our Valley.
“Ideas about our Cultural, Social, Economic and Political development, our potential and actual development with regard to Tourism, ways of increasing Employment Opportunities, Helping Attract and Develop Local Business, Directions for Infrastructure Development, Ways of Protecting our Environment whilst dealing with the challenges of Climate Change, How we want our Towns to Look and Feel, Traffic Management, Ways of dealing with Current Challenges, etc. etc., etc.
“ALL ideas are welcome and we will not delete posts or threads because we disagree with the views of those who express them.
“We ask that you debate ideas with an open mind and remember that on this page we are all equal.”