Home' Plains Producer : PP_130417 Contents Plains Producer, Wednesday April 17, 2013
v Rate rise
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MAJOR council rate hikes are
possible in the near future if support
for local government is not beefed up
from state and federal government
Concerns local councils will fnd
it tougher to fund their community
services in coming years sparked
calls for research into how the issue
can be addressed.
A discussion paper prepared by
University of Adelaide economist,
Associate Professor Barry Burgan, an
associate of its International Centre
for Financial Services, demanded
better co-ordination between State
and Local governments, ongoing
improvement to governance practices
and to management skills.
The discussion paper, commis-
sioned by the Local Government
Association (LGA), notes that while
council debt levels are low, govern-
ment grants are
The report also
highlights SA Lo-
cal Government has led a national
push to improve the management
of long-term infrastructure over the
LGA President, Kym McHugh,
called for more creative thinking
about ways of resourcing local ser-
vices to the community.
"If we do not look for more in-
novation in how revenue is raised,
communities will struggle to maintain
the infrastructure like roads, drains,
footpaths and community facilities
they rely on every day," he said.
Professor Burgan claimed the
state's councils gain less income from
user fees and rely more on rates than in
other states, and grants to SAcouncils
have fallen more sharply.
His report notes that SA Councils
get the lowest per capita grants from
State Government of any inAustralia.
Mr McHugh said the LGA had
invited comment on the discussion
Wakefeld Regional Council chief
executive offcer, CateAtkinson, said
council did not provide a response to
the discussion paper.
"However, I have worked with
Barry Burgan on this issue when I was
working in the city and he is aware of
my views regarding the inequity that
exists for SA in the funding models,"
"Unfortunately the ever-increasing
under funding of local governments
is placing a signifcant pressure on
local communities and the current
inconsistent approach by the Com-
monwealth with wealth distribution
should not continue.
"There is no doubt that the level
of funding is the fundamental issue.
"The review by the Federal gov-
ernment will not clearly address this.
Additionally, the application of a
complicated formula that is not fex-
ible and does not take into account all
issues, results in funding distribution
that is historic and
static in nature.
"There is also
the issue of tied and untied grants.
"Tied grants are much more con-
strained and do not provide for cross
council projects and different funding
MrsAtkinson foreshadowed inevi-
table rate rises if the situation at state
and federal level did not improve.
"Councils are constrained on how
they can raise revenue other than
through rates, fees and charges, and
grants," she said.
"Historically, councils have kept
their rate increases low because of
the desire to minimise impacts on
residents, but ultimately this means
the cost of doing business is not being
met by the ratepayers.
"Across the state, councils are
fnding it increasingly diffcult to meet
the expectations of their communities
relating to services.
"We deliver a wide range of ser-
vices and must meet our legislative
obligations just as larger and more
"This ultimately constrains us
in terms of what and when we can
YOU could have been
forgiven for thinking
there was a time machine
at Balaklava Primary
School on Thursday last
The year three and
four class has been learn-
ing about the history of
their local area as part of
the Australian History
As part of this, stu-
dents have been learning
about how their com-
munity has changed over
time, while also compar-
ing the similarities and
differences of various
items and occupations.
Avisit to the local his-
tory museum was used as
a wonderful resource to
start the topic.
As a culmination,
the class were involved
in a "Back to the Olden
Days" school day, dress-
ing up in fne fashion
from years gone by.
Highlights of the day
their lessons us-
writing with ink
nib pens, danc-
ing the Brown
Jug Polka, play-
and wearing the
now, it's school
they'll be danc-
ing to a different
n Cate Atkinson’s frst
year as CEO -- Page 7.
THE year three and four class celebrating "Back to the Olden Days" in their great costumes
are (back, from left) teacher Wendy Richards, Hunter Lamond, Kyan Coombe, Ava Woodroofe,
Charli Griffths, Emily Lemon, Jordan Tulk, Maria-Christine Austria, Ella Taylor, Matthew Oliver,
Steven Wade, (middle) Blade Williams, Jack McLean, Makayla Litzow, Ryan Coles, Jayden
Kenyon, Harrison Lemon, Tori Lane, (front) Dylan Hale, Tyler McBride, Charlie Evans, Ethan
Myrianthopoulos, Tyler Durdin, Taylor White, Akeisha Cornish and Jorjah Pike.
DANCING the brown jug polka are Ava Woodroofe and Steven
Wade, with BELOW (from left) Charlie Evans, Maria-Christine
Austria and Matthew Oliver.
THREE generations get together (from
left) Shaz Pike, daughter, Jorjah Pike,
and grandmother, Isabelle Michalanney.
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