All land within the Newcastle Local Government Area (LGA) was revalued during 2019/20 as part of the 3-year valuation cycle undertaken by the Valuer General. These new land values are known as base date 1 July 2019 land values and are indicative of the market conditions at that date. These land valuations will apply for rating purposes from 1 July 2020 and are a major factor used in determining the level of rates all landowners will pay.
City of Newcastle’s (CN) total rate income increase is pegged by the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) who determines the percentage all NSW Councils can increase their total rate income by over the previous year. The announced increase for 2020/21 is 2.6% which CN has adopted.
Variations in land value through the revaluation process have no effect on the total rate income of CN. Individual assessments, however, will vary depending on the movement in land value in relation to the average change in land value within each rate category. Generally, if the value of an individual parcel of land has increased by more than the average increase across the Local Government Area, the rates will increase. If the property value increase is lower than average, the rates will decrease. As there is a significant range in valuation changes, individual properties could vary substantially in rates payable.
The outcome of the general revaluation has been a wide variation in land valuation changes throughout the LGA. In the residential category the range of average land value movements per suburb varies from 53% to 0% with the business category per suburb ranging from 59% to 1%.
Council resolved to continue to use for residential ratepayers, a structure based on the use of a 50% base amount. This amount is $795.06 and applies to every residential property and is added to the amount calculated using the new land value referenced above.
Council also resolved to:
- Adopt the business category with sub-categories for the rating of large-scale industrial and commer
- Adopt the business category with sub-categories for the rating of large-scale industrial and commercial properties to be determined by the ad valorem method with a minimum rate of $1,072.60
- Adopt the farmland category to be determined by the ad valorem method with a minimum rate of $1,072.60
- Adopt the special business rates as outlined in Our Budget
- Adopt the residential Stormwater Management Service Charge of $25 per non-strata property and $12.50 per strata unit
- Adopt the business Stormwater Management Service Charge of $25 per 350m2 of land area capped at $1,000. Business strata units be calculated in the same manner with the charge for each unit being determined by the unit entitlement
- Adopt the Domestic Waste Management Service Charge of $374.52
- Adopt the Business Waste Management Service Charge of $241.41.
The special rates structure for 2019/20 will continue to be levied in 2020/21. These are:
- Hunter Mall – defraying the cost of continuing additional horticultural and cleansing services and street furnishings.
- Mayfield Business District – defraying the additional cost of promotion, beautification and development of the Mayfield Business District.
- Hamilton Business District - defraying the additional cost of promotion, beautification and development of the Hamilton Business District.
- Wallsend Business District - defraying the additional cost of promotion, beautification and development of the Wallsend Business District.
- New Lambton Business District - defraying the additional cost of promotion, beautification and development of the New Lambton Business District.
- Citycentre Benefit - defraying the additional cost of promotion, beautification and development of the Citycentre Benefit Area.
Rate assistance provisions
Currently the following rate assistance options exist where ratepayers are experiencing financial difficulties:
- Negotiation of special arrangements to pay rates and charges,
- Write-off of accrued interest,
- Deferral of rates and charges. This scheme is subject to eligibility criteria,
- Financial assistance through four local welfare agencies used by us to provide $65 vouchers as part payment of ratepayer’s accounts (subject to the welfare agency's eligibility criteria),
- Ratepayers experiencing financial difficulties should contact our Debt Management Team on (02) 4974 2307 for further information.