By Juliano Oliveira
Brisbane’s Lord Mayor, Adrian Schrinner, has decided to implement a rates freeze for six months, from 1 July 2020 until 31 December 2020.
The decision has been made as an attempt to facilitate the economic recovery of the city following the COVID-19 pandemic. After this period, rates will increase by an average of 2.25%.
“Historically, rates have increased each year from July 1, however, this year, all ratepayers will have six months relief. This is the first rates freeze implemented in Brisbane in 35 years,” said Cr Schrinner.
“This rates freeze will apply both to residential and business rates. When rates are adjusted in 2021, they will rise by the standard figure of recent years – 2.5%. Averaged across the 12 months of the Budget this will equate to a 1.25% rate increase.”
The First Home Owner’s rebate will continue to be available for eligible first home buyers with a 50% rebate to a maximum of $1,000 on rates for the first twelve months of home ownership.
An expansion of the First Home Owner’s rebate will commence on 1 October 2020 with a 100% rebate to a maximum of $2,000 on rates for the first twelve months for first home buyers building a new home or buying off the plan.
“We will also offer targeted relief to households experiencing financial hardship, including a one-off $250 rates rebate for JobSeeker recipients. We will continue to support pensioners by providing a rebate of up to 40% on their rates bill and free off-peak travel for seniors on buses, CityCats and ferries,” said Cr Schrinner.
Brisbane’s Budget 2020-2021 is $3.1 billion and it was announced today (17). The statement forecasts a $142.5 million loss in revenue, a $40 million loss at the end of this financial year, and a total debt of $4.3 billion.