New rating categories for Raby Bay canal properties

Redland City Council has voted to move away from special levies for canal properties at Raby Bay, introducing new rating categories in its 2018-19 budget to fund revetment wall repairs from their general rates.

It follows city-wide consultation, including the involvement of an independent Citizens’ Advisory Panel, on how best to manage and fund the maintenance activities of the city’s canals and lake and revetment walls.

“Differential rates have been introduced for Raby Bay canal properties in 2018-19 to cover revetment walls,’’ Cr Williams said. “Currently there is no programmed expenditure for revetment wall works in Aquatic Paradise or Sovereign Waters, where traditionally there is very limited or no revetment wall works required.”

“Council will pay for all dredging and maintenance at Raby Bay, Aquatic Paradise and Sovereign Waters estates and 10 percent of the cost of work on revetment walls at Raby Bay, reflecting slightly more than the proportion of revetment wall owned by Council. These sections of wall border the city’s public parks and facilities.

“Essentially, Raby Bay canal property owners will continue to pay for their proportion of revetment walls. They will pay via new differential general rating categories, rather than a special charge.

“And with Council collecting the funds and managing the repairs there will be a visible reserve that is then used to fix revetment walls; providing residents with assurances that  revetment walls will be fixed should problems arise, which is what canal property owners said they wanted. They did not want to be left to rely on individual property owners to fix the revetment walls or for property owners to be left with large individual bills for a revetment wall failure on their property.”

Cr Williams said the appropriate level of funding contributed by the city and those who live on the canals and lake had been discussed by Council and canal and lake property owners for many years.

“We are confident this arrangement will provide security to canal property owners and the broader city,” Cr Williams said.

“I encourage the city’s residents to get out and enjoy our canals and lakes, whether it is a spot of fishing or kayaking. The waterways are there for everyone.”

The new differential rating system follows extensive community consultation, including a 40-person Citizens’ Advisory Panel – the first of its kind in the Redlands – on the best way to fund and manage canal and lake maintenance and revetment walls.

Visit the Redland City Council website for more information.