Mayor Bill Ludwig hands down the 2016/17 budget to the table of councillors.
Mayor Bill Ludwig hands down the 2016/17 budget to the table of councillors. Contributed

Discounts don't hide the Livingstone Shire rates rise

Livingstone Shire ratepayer Noel Neilsen has called the council out on a reduction to rates "discount"  he says is really rate rise by stealth.

  LIVINGSTONE Shire rates notices are out and it seems Mayor BillLudwig and his round table have been dabbling in magic.

  My rates for the half year have only gone up $32 however the discount for paying on time has gone down $22 for the half year.

  This means that although the rates have only gone up by $64 for the year abra kadabra, ala kazam $108 disappears out of my back pocket for the year instead of $64. True magic indeed! 

  I bet no one saw that one coming.

I also bet the councillors quite happily tell everyone that will listen how wonderful they are keeping the rates rise to a minimum, not mentioning the discount being cut. 

But I am quite sure we will have forgotten about the magic trick by next election. 

 The discount going down by $44 a year is really a rise in rates.

It doesn't matter what sleight of hand they use on the numbers up the top of the rates notice the line that says "Amount to Pay" tells the true story and the actual honest rise in rates.

  If they are going to increase the rates they could at least be a little bit honest about it.

  How stupid do our LSC councillors really think we are?

I assume the extra money collected from rural areas will be used to maintain rural roads and we will no longer have to go to The Morning Bulletin every time our roads get to goat track stage to get something done about them.

  The LSC will now be able to keep the fourth road crew and our roads will be maintained to a safe level all the time instead of quick patch ups when the number of comments in The Morning Bulletin is getting embarrassing and the roads are in an extremely dangerous condition.

But I suppose I should have begun with "Once upon a time" because it was quite clear long before de-amalgamation that we would be going back to the old same issues as before amalgamation.

Rural rates will always go to the coastal strip even though we were promised faithfully without Rockhampton stealing all our rates money things would be different this time

  Just goes to show you can't always believe a politician. But occasionally it would be nice for a change.

  Noel Neilsen Mt Chalmers

  A response to Mr Neilsen's claims has been requested from LSC.