Staley calls for rates relief for Ripon residents

The Victorian Government should urgently provide council rates relief for residents struggling with the economic effects of the COVID-19 outbreak, says Member for Ripon Louise Staley.

With many rural and regional residents already dealing with higher rates than their Melbourne counterparts, Ms Staley said the economic effects of the current pandemic would hit those outside Melbourne even harder.

“Many people in rural and regional have lost their livelihoods or have been stood down from work due to this outbreak. The State Government should step in and support councils to provide rates relief to residents struggling to pay them”, Ms Staley said.

“We also know that local rural and regional councils, like those in Ripon, want to be helping residents and providing essential services. The State Government needs to provide this support so that rural and regional councils and their residents can survive.”

“Councils are currently in the process of preparing their budgets for the next financial year. This move would give councils certainty about their financial position at a time of great uncertainty, and enable them to guarantee that they will continue to provide essential services to residents.”

“This pandemic and its economic outcomes affect all Victorians, not just those living along the tram tracks in Metropolitan Melbourne. Providing rates relief is a meaningful way to ease the strain on rural and regional families who are really struggling.”