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Two thumbs up for Council rate relief

Monday 14 September 2020

Welcome relief is reaching ratepayers experiencing hardship due to COVID-19, with more than 1060 Frankston City residents approved for a $200 rate relief waiver.

Self-funded retiree, Judy, is very proud of her “little cottage” in Karingal, where she lives with her adoring dog, Gizmo.

Having grown up in Frankston, Judy says she couldn’t imagine a better community to be part of and feels supported by Council, having recently received a hardship rate waiver.

“I was very happy to receive the waiver and I think it shows that Council is caring for the people who are struggling right now,” Judy said.

She added that the assistance would help her manage her budget at this challenging time and the online application process was easy.

“I’m not IT savvy but the online process was extremely easy and I heard back within a week.”

Frankston City Mayor, Sandra Mayer, said while annual rates notices were distributed in early September, Council understood that the current environment had impacted some ratepayer’s ability to meet their payment commitments.

She encouraged residents to contact Council if they were experiencing financial hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“To assist, Council has developed a range of support options including rate waivers and arrangements to pay, so if you’re experiencing genuine hardship visit our website or give us a call to see how we can help,” Cr Mayer said.

Council CEO, Phil Cantillon, echoed the Mayor’s sentiments.

“We want to do everything we can to help those struggling to makes ends meet at the moment, which is why as well as introducing the rate waivers, we’ve forgone more than $378,000 in income through the freezing of unpaid penalty interest alone.

“On top of this, we’ve awarded over $260,000 in grants to support local businesses, community groups, individuals and sporting clubs to recover from COVID-19.”

Mr Cantillon said Council had an obligation to provide essential services to the community and to build and maintain infrastructure to meet their needs.

“As we move forward into the financial year you will see the roll out of a significant Capital Works program worth close to $60 million dollars, to help stimulate our local economy and create local jobs.”

He also reminded residents to ensure they had registered to vote in the upcoming local government elections.

“October’s Council elections are an important part of our democratic process for each new Council term so please, send in your vote on time and make it count.”

If you need someone to talk to about the assistance available to you call: 1300 322 322 and ask to be transferred to Council’s Community Recovery Call Centre. The centre is open Monday-Friday, 8.30am-5pm.

You can also find information on rate relief options by visiting: frankston.vic.gov.au/raterelief

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