by Peter Gardiner
NOOSA Council's number crunchers may face a tougher job in the months ahead keeping a lid on resident levy rises for up to 30% of ratepayers after the latest land valuations saw a 11.3 per cent local increase.
This was the highest for a coastal council, area, ahead of Douglas Shire in the north and marginally above the third-highest Sunshine Coast rise of 10.4 per cent.
These figures revealed Noosa's medium residential land valuation had risen to $270,000 to 13.7 per cent and 8 per cent for rural residential land to $202,500.
The Valuer-General's Property Market Movement report just released said:
"Prestige property values have also improved with minor increases in beach front lands as well as for canal frontage properties in Noosa."
Noosa Council corporate services director Michael Shave said for about 70% of Noosa properties on the minimum general rate, property valuation increases won't result in an automatic rate increase.
"The differential rating structure used to levy general rates, regulates property valuation increases," he said.
Mr Shave said the differential general rating used by local government is not a perfect science and is structured as equitably as possible for ratepayers.
"Usually with property valuation changes there are winners and losers within each rating category, and council always looks to minimise impacts where possible," he said.
Mayor Tony Wellington said there was always the challenge to strike the balance when setting rates.
"We have fairly high property values, but we also know that the statistics show that our average household income is below the state average.
"So we have people in the Noosa Shire who are struggling with high property values and comparatively low income.
"So that's why we don't' want to hit them too hard."