Cr Danita Potter, CEO Mark Pitt, Mayor Brett Otto and Council staff … waiting for the residents who didn’t show up

by Anne Miller

August 19, 2020

So Kingaroy residents … you must be all happy with the South Burnett Regional Council? No issues you’d like to discuss, no questions you’d like to ask or any praise and thanks you’d like to give?

Mayor Brett Otto has been holding a series of Rates Information sessions around the South Burnett.

The Mayor was happy with the good turnout at Murgon – the first of the sessions.

But it seems the folk in Kingaroy must be totally contented with their rates.

And they must also be fully informed about the issues that surround Council’s annual decision-making process.

On Tuesday night, Mayor Otto, Division 3 (Kingaroy) councillor Danita Potter, Council CEO Mark Pitt and Council staff were all ready to field your curly questions in the Town Hall Reception Room.

Except no one showed up at 5:30pm … well, besides me and my camera.

It’s not as if the meeting was “secret”. It was well-advertised by Council in local media and on Facebook.

Decisions are made by those who show up.

People who can’t find the time (or can’t be bothered) to take part in the democratic process – ie. talk to their representatives about issues that concern them – have absolutely no right to become keyboard warriors and complain all over social media about what’s happening around them.

In the old days, the loud and disgruntled ignorati bored people witless in the public bar or over the back fence, testing their friends’ patience but doing very little damage to society.

Now they jump online in a micro-second to whinge to hundreds and stir up trouble. But apparently they also don’t have the guts to talk to people face-to-face.

For those of you who are interested in the future of your towns, the next rates information sessions will be held on:

  • August 20 – Nanango Cultural Centre
  • August 24 – Durong Hall
  • August 25 – Blackbutt Memorial Hall

The Wondai meeting has been rescheduled but no date has been announced yet.

All sessions will run from 5:30pm to 6:30pm and no bookings are required, although social distancing must be observed.


Anderssons Fruit Market for quality fruits and vegetables

 

5 Responses to "So Where Were You, Kingaroy?"

  1. “But apparently they also don’t have the guts to talk to people face-to-face.”

    Please be a little more considerate. There are many people who “freeze up” if they are required to speak up in public or confront people in authority.

    Also, perhaps COVID-19 has made many people wary of attending meetings.

  2. Could it be that maybe the Kingaroy folks do know that they are on a good thing re general rating? The general rate is levied in accordance with the unimproved value of that particular parcel as in so many cents of the unimproved value.

    On checking on council’s website under Rates and Charges some curious listings are as follows with figures as cents in the dollar of value:

    • Residential land – Kingaroy 2.42417 and Murgon 3.86166
    • Commercial land – Kingaroy 2.85572 and Murgon 5.20640
    • Industrial land – Kingaroy 1.95404 and Murgon 3.53080

    And we thought that we are all in this “all together”, eh? Maybe many think “What’s the point”?

  3. The rate in the dollar really has very little to do with anything – it’s the total of the rates notice that matters. And in the South Burnett, the Council took a decision many years ago to bring in “rates equalisation” … or in other words, to get all our similar towns and other land classifications to pay similar rates so the cost burden of running the region was shared fairly amongst all ratepayers.

    Kingaroy town, commercial and industrial land commands higher prices than its Murgon counterparts, so the rate in the dollar is set higher in Murgon to bring that town’s average rate bill into line with average rate bills in Kingaroy. The same variations (but with different rate-in-the-dollar amounts) can be seen in Wondai, Nanango and Blackbutt.

    So yes, we really are all in this together. And it’s probably not a bad thing.

  4. That’s all very well, Bill. So everyone pays the same rates amount overall and the burden of the cost of building and maintaining infrastructure across the region is fairly shared.

    If it wasn’t like this, Kingaroy ratepayers – because of the larger population size – would be shouldering even more of the cost of infrastructure in other towns than they do now.

    Sounds fair? BUT when it comes time to sell, the Kingaroy landholder will get more for their property than the Murgon landholder (because of the higher land valuation) and the Murgon landholder (who has been paying a higher rate in the dollar) will be at a disadvantage.

    If the two properties hit the market at the same time, a potential buyer will look at the Kingaroy land value and its rates and compare it with the Murgon land value and its rates. The Kingaroy property will look more attractive to long-term investors because of the intrinsic value of the land and the lower rate in the dollar.

    This could be holding back investment in Murgon, Wondai, Nanango etc etc

  5. We’re happy. Potholes in our road that had been a curse for months were repaired the day after a rate payer complained to the new council and Hoggs Road has had a major uplift after years of literally ‘shocking’ conditions. Thank you.

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