Lid kept on Broome Shire rates

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Shire of Broome president Harold Tracey and deputy president Desiree Male.
Camera IconShire of Broome president Harold Tracey and deputy president Desiree Male. Credit: Jakeb Waddell

Ratepayers in Broome will only be hit with a 1.75 per cent increase in their charges this financial year.

Although residents and business owners in the Kimberley town have been slammed by sky-high rate hikes in the past, Shire of Broome councillors unanimously agreed on the minor rise at an ordinary meeting earlier this month.

For an average residential home owner with a property worth $500,000, this would mean charges increase by about $60 for the year.

It is the fourth successive year the rates have been kept below 2 per cent in the North West town, which saw a surge of nearly 70 per cent between 2006-07 and 2015-16.

Shire president Harold Tracey said it was the equal smallest increase in the past 12 years for Broome.

“We’ve achieved this by making sure that our budget is as lean as possible despite the continued increase in costs such as staffing, utilities, fuel and insurance, and the need to continue providing a high standard of facilities and services in the community,” he said.

“Council has worked hard to secure external grant funds and to partner with stakeholders and funding bodies to deliver these transformative projects that stimulate our local economy, ensure that Broome remains an enviable place to live and work, and place us in good stead to take advantage of opportunities.”

According to Shire documents, a rate revenue of $22,798,521 was needed to achieve a balanced budget in 2019-20.

Mr Tracey said major projects of interest during this period included the $11 million construction of the Town Beach jetty and a $2 million upgrade of Broome Recreation and Aquatic Centre courts, road upgrades, park improvements, business cases and plan designs.

Rate notices are expected to be issued on July 18, with full payments due on August 22, with two-instalment and quarterly payment options available.

Meanwhile, residents within the Shire of Derby-West Kimberley are facing a rates rise of 6 per cent, as mooted in a council meeting in May.

Shire president Geoff Haerewa said a decision would be made by councillors in coming weeks.

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