The Andrews Labor Government’s commitment to end uncontrolled council rate rises has been delivered, after the Victorian Parliament passed the Fair Go Rates system.

Member for Eastern Gippsland Region, Harriet Shing said the Local Government Act Amendment Bill was passed in the Legislative Council and would stop councils raising their rates above a cap, based on the Melbourne Consumer Price Index (CPI).

Ms Shing said the Fair Go Rates system would be in place for the 2016-17 financial year, fulfilling the Labor Government’s election commitment to rein in council rate hikes.

The Bill also provides the Essential Services Commission (ESC) greater oversight of council spending, ensuring ongoing compliance and monitoring of overall outcomes for communities.

The Fair Go Rates system reflects the Labor Government’s agenda to reform the local government sector, including a review of the Local Government Act, an overhaul of council governance standards and an improved performance reporting framework.

In developing the Fair Go Rates system, the Government tasked the ESC with providing recommendations on the cap, including undertaking extensive consultation with councils and communities across Victoria.

The Fair Go Rates system will become law after receiving Royal Assent.

Quotes attributable to Member for Eastern Gippsland Region, Harriet Shing

“The Andrews Labor Government is delivering on its commitment to cap council rate rises and protect Victorian households from uncontrolled hikes.”

“Our Fair Go Rates cap is about enhancing local government accountability and transparency, and ensuring councils are listening to their communities.”

“After speaking with many Gippsland residents, I know just how much of a difference our Fair Go Rates system will make.”