Property owners told to pay FCRCouncil rates or homes will be sold at auction

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THE Fraser Coast Regional Council is set to auction off 74 homes to recover more than $887,000 in outstanding rates.

But Bill Towers says his home should not be one of them after he paid off more than $10,000 in rates last week.

The Granville man was left upset and embarrassed after his home was included among the list of homes and properties to be auctioned, which was made public by the council this week.

Bill said he had been in contact with the council last week and the amount had been paid in full.

For others, the struggle to pay off the rates debt before the auction on March 16 continues.

A 77-YEAR-OLD Torquay man, who asked not to be named, said his home had been on the market for three weeks and he was in a race to sell his home for an appropriate price before it went up for auction at a reserve determined by the council.

“I don’t like the way the council goes about it – selling a person’s home from under them,” the man said.He said that with a bit of patience, the council would have the money owed to them.”I want to sell it in my time for my price,” he said.

“We are trying to do the right thing.”

Severe health problems played a role in both Bill and the elderly Torquay man falling behind in their rates, with both saying they wished council had shown more compassion for their circumstances.

But the council said putting a house up for auction was one of the final steps in its recovery process in situations where rates remained unpaid for three years or more.

“If owners do not wish to enter into a payment plan to substantially reduce the amount outstanding within a reasonable period, when the rates exceed three years overdue, the property owners are advised that the property would be recommended for sale at a public auction,” council chief executive officer Lisa Desmond said.

Property owners have until the sale starts to remove the property from the auction list by payment of the full amount.

“Under the Local Government Act, council can take action to recover unpaid rates if the rates are overdue for three years or greater,” she said.

“Once the land is sold, council only retains the value of the outstanding rates and charges with the balance provided to the mortgage holder or property owner.”

Last year 82 properties were set to be placed up for auction to reclaim $1.4 million in outstanding rates.

But of these, fewer than 10 were auctioned off on the day.

 

  • HadagutfullMaryborough 14 hours ago
    Maybe if rates were not as high as they are and continually “gouged” by this so called “regional” council, people may be able to afford to live here but when you have people on a salary in the hundreds of thousands of dollars, they simply don’t care. Pay up, sell up or get out is their attitude. As I have said previously, you rarely seen anything like this before amalgamation, either here or in Hervey Bay… I wonder why, maybe because of the money wasting FCRC who continually increase rates so they have more money to pay for their idiotic ideas… roll on March 19th.

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  • VagabondMaryborough 13 hours ago
    “$887,000 in outstanding rates” means a short fall in council’s budget or they borrow the money to make up for the rates. If the money to cover this short fall is borrowed it means we pay interest on the loan. The other option is to cut services/infrastructure by $887,000.

    Why should those who pay their rates suffer because some people can’t or won’t?

    These people have had three years to front council and make some offer to pay, if only $25 or $30 per week.

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  • ernest2Urraween 13 hours ago
    When the council sold off houses before they made no attempt to get a market rate, the auctions were not advertised properly and only a few people knew about it ? the result was that the houses sold for less then half their worth and the owners got little from it . As long as our council got it’s pound of flesh they cared nothing about the owners and celebrated their win and how clever they were . YUCK.

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  • HerveyBPialba 11 hours ago
    Seems to quite a lack of communications between Council Departments when a house that had its rates fully paid for still appears on the list of those being sold, There has to be an enquiry into the running of the Council and find out what else goes wrong, although the list would be endless.

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  • Jerabek2Tiaro 10 hours ago
    Yes the Mayor needs the $$$ for more Rocks in Parks, BBQs, skating rinks.inc
    $100,000 for a platform for a bronze Turtle……..money well spent…worth loosing your home for?????????

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  • Michael-1961Urangan 10 hours ago
    It is a difficult decision and if you see the hoops the council has to get to before this there are many. There will be no winners in this it is just part of the the difficult and hard things councils have to do best of luck to all

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  • duck1952Howard 9 hours ago
    FCRC may have the right to recover the monies owed BUT in a compassionate manner and if sold should receive the TRUE MARKET VALUE of these properties or close to market value.
    If this Council is so concerned about $887.000 back rates and desperate for this money ,” PLEASE ,PLEASE EXPLAIN CEO ” the appointment of the 4th DIRECTOR at around $350.00O per year give or take a few dollars PLEASE explain THE jobs for the boys totally wasted monies AND JUSTIFY IN WRITING AROUND $1 MILLION OVER 3 YEARS FOR THIS TOTAL WASTE or do you have the need to embarrass these ratepayers due to unfortunate circumstances BUT then again you do a lot of running and hiding from enforcing Local Government Acts and Laws out here at Howard to suit yourself . Refer to page 1 minutes of FCRC Ordinary Meeting 10/2/16 for verification of 4 DIRECTORS but then again after March 19 much MASSIVE SAVINGS will be achieved with 5 positions going under the microscope .

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  • KiwiBayHervey Bay 8 hours ago
    I certainly don’t agree with the level of rates we pay here in Hervey Bay (disgustingly high for what we get) but if you don’t pay your rates, then you will eventually lose out. If you’re struggling to pay your rates then talk to the council early rather than wait for the debt to build up over 3-4 years and DON’T drag out that out ‘health problems’ excuse either.

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  • ozbirkoPoint Vernon 6 hours ago
    Interestingly, many countries have a different approach to rates..they only pay a rate determined at the last sale, plus ongoing CPI, and this remains in place until the next time the property is sold..it is then re-evaluated and set at a new level based on value at that time. This prevents people being priced out of their homes as the property value increases, but their income drops in retirement. They get to remain in the house that that have lived in for years (sometimes decades), and paid rates towards the services that later generations will benefit from. Stops cashed up sharks waiting for desperate pensioners to be forced out and picking up the property at auctions such as this. Our current system is totally unfair IMHO.

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  • ACBOCALLCENTREMaryborough an hour ago
    Duck 1952 tells us this>
    ” PLEASE ,PLEASE EXPLAIN CEO ” the appointment of the 4th DIRECTOR at around $350.00O per year give or take a few dollars ”
    If this is the case where 4 FCRC council employees are being paid around $350k each we should be very concerned & be class action driven if not dutifully publicly explained in detail by council to its constituents.
    Does not however allow us to not pay our rates

    Reply

 

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