Thursday 8 June 2017
A review of land currently rated as farmland in the Bega Valley Shire is underway to meet with state legislation requiring Councils to have up to date records on rateable properties.
Owners of farmland in the Shire were recently contacted informing them of the land review and the information required to update Council’s records.
Director of Strategy and Business Services, Graham Stubbs said, “A review of farmland is long overdue. It’s important that all rateable land in the Shire is rated in relation to its actual use.
“Currently, the Local Government Act requires all rateable land to be classified as residential, business, mining or farmland, and to meet this requirement Council is required to have up to date records.
“To be considered farmland, the main source of land income is derived from certain recognised farming activities, including grazing, animal feedlots, dairying, pig-farming, poultry farming, viticulture, orcharding, bee-keeping, horticulture, vegetable growing, crop growing, forestry or aquaculture.
“It’s important to note that the review has no effect on the zoning of a property, and zoning has no impact on the categorisation for rates.
“There is currently some misunderstanding in the community around the recent deferral of the Fire and Emergency Services Levy. The land review and the levy are two separate issues and it is still a requirement that all property owners with farmland submit the information we need to update our records.
“In the Bega Valley Shire this equates to about 950 properties being reviewed and re-categorised if necessary.
“By categorising land that relates to its actual use, we are ensuring the funds received from all rateable land meet the requirements of the NSW Local Government Act 1993. This guarantees the rates charged correspond with the actual land use taking place on local properties,” Mr Stubbs said.
For more information please contact Bega Valley Shire Council on 6499 2222.
(1) Land is to be categorised as
"farmland" if it is a parcel of rateable land valued as one assessment and its dominant use is for farming (that is, the business or industry of grazing, animal feedlots, dairying, pig-farming, poultry farming, viticulture, orcharding, bee-keeping, horticulture, vegetable growing, the growing of crops of any kind, forestry or aquaculture within the meaning of the Fisheries Management Act 1994 , or any combination of those businesses or industries) which:
(a) has a significant and substantial commercial purpose or character, and
(b) is engaged in for the purpose of profit on a continuous or repetitive basis (whether or not a profit is actually made).
(2) Land is not to be categorised as farmland if it is rural residential land.
(3) The regulations may prescribe circumstances in which land is or is not to be categorised as farmland.
Photograph: Farmland in the shire is undergoing a rating review in line with requirements of the Local Government Act.