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Barry’s Buzz Items of interest affecting Local Government Revenue Management.

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Presentation on theme: "Barry’s Buzz Items of interest affecting Local Government Revenue Management."— Presentation transcript:

1 Barry’s Buzz Items of interest affecting Local Government Revenue Management

2 Topics Jeffree – v – GCCC De-amalgamation ABR – Towards an Better Business Future Program Coming Up

3 BRUCE JEFFREE – v - GOLD COAST CITY COUNCIL Proceedings were commenced by GCCC on 24 June 2011 by claim number M2134 of 2011 in the Magistrates Court at Southport for rates and charges –(a) made and levied by the Council the Local Government Act 2009 (“LGA”), and the –(b) Local Government (Finance, Plans and Reporting) Regulation 2010 (“Finance Reg”);

4 BRUCE JEFFREE – v - GOLD COAST CITY COUNCIL an application was made by the ratepayer to the Court that the rate recovery proceedings be removed to the Federal Court or High Court of Australia based on a proposition that:-

5 BRUCE JEFFREE – v - GOLD COAST CITY COUNCIL (a) the Commonwealth Constitution gives the Commonwealth an exclusive power to impose “land taxes”; and (b) the conferral of power on local governments by the LGA to make and levy rates and charges on land, based on the valuation of land, is inconsistent with the Commonwealth exclusivity of that power.

6 BRUCE JEFFREE – v - GOLD COAST CITY COUNCIL The application for “removal” was heard by the Court on 9 February 2012 and was unsurprisingly, dismissed (with costs).

7 BRUCE JEFFREE – v - GOLD COAST CITY COUNCIL The ratepayer then filed a defence, which repeated the “constitutional” arguments and raised various other arguments including matters relating the rights of an owner of “fee simple”, and the lawfulness of federal grant funding to local governments.

8 BRUCE JEFFREE – v - GOLD COAST CITY COUNCIL The Council made application for summary judgement. That application was heard and determined by the Court on 18 April The Plaintiff’s opposition was, based on the written submissions, premised on the familiar theme that a local government has no power to impose charges in the nature of “taxation”. The Court granted summary judgement on 18 April 2012.

9 BRUCE JEFFREE – v - GOLD COAST CITY COUNCIL On 23 July 2012 the ratepayer filed an application to strike out appeal (number 257 of 2012). The matter was heard in the District Court on 27 August before Judge McGinness with GCCC being represented by Tim Fynes-Clinton (King & Co)

10 BRUCE JEFFREE – v - GOLD COAST CITY COUNCIL There were strong arguments that the appeal could be struck out –The debt was under the threshold for appeal ($25,000) and as such the required leave was not sought. However as GCCC had some responsibilities under model litigant rules it was concluded that the matter should continue

11 BRUCE JEFFREE – v - GOLD COAST CITY COUNCIL GCCC’s arguments were based around the Judgment of Wheeler J in the Court of Appeal Glew & Anor v Shire of Greenough [2006] WA SCA 260 (Court of Appeal) This Judgment was affirmed in the High Court by Glew & Glew v Shire of Greenough [2007] HCA Trans 520

12 BRUCE JEFFREE – v - GOLD COAST CITY COUNCIL In the Western Australian Court of Appeal decision of Wheeler J the 1988 referendum is discussed wherein Wheeler J states that because the 1988 referendum question was defeated it does not follow that the states do not have power to establish a system of local government. Wheeler J states that the state always has had, pursuant to the power to legislate for the peace, order and the good government of that state, a power to set up a system of local government as the state sees fit. Wheeler J also deals with the state’s power to impose taxation.

13 BRUCE JEFFREE – v - GOLD COAST CITY COUNCIL The Court ordered that the appeal was struck out and the appellant (the ratepayer) pay costs.

14 De-Amalgamation The new Sate Government determined that it would set up the Boundary Commission to review current Council boundaries Col Meng, the former mayor of Mackay Regional Council was appointed as Commissioner on 29 June 2012.

15 De-Amalgamation The Commissioner will review local government de-amalgamation proposals referred by the Minister for Local Government in an open and logical way and will undertake adequate public consultation. De-amalgamation proposals will be assessed against a set of financial, social and economic criteria.

16 De-Amalgamation 19 applications have been received 14 applications were rejected 5 applications are being considered by the Commissioner with the assistance of the State Treasury A decision is expected in November 2012

17 De-Amalgamation If the Commissioner recommends a de- amalgamation proposal proceeds to a poll to gauge whole-of-community support, the Minister will make his decision public by 14 December Compulsory polls, if required, are expected to be held prior to 31 March 2013.

18 De-Amalgamation Should a poll be successful and Executive Council on the advice of the Minister for Local Government approves the de-amalgamation, transitional work will be undertaken to prepare the councils for de-amalgamation. Should it be required, elections for new council/s are expected to be held by 31 March 2014.

19 ABR – Towards an Better Business Future Program A secure online and easy to use wbb browser service Allows users to build their own reports from ABR data Allows Users to download required data files from ABR data

20 Commenced - July 2012 Consultation and Co design - October/November Build Components – November 2012 User Testing – March 2013 Deployment – From July 2012 ABR – Towards an Better Business Future Program

21 Coming Up 17 May 2012 One day conference in Brisbane And………….

22 2013 Annual Conference October 2013


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