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  Council » Policies and Plans » Hazard and catchment management » Level of Service and Funding Policy » 16 Project Watershed Funding Policy » 16.2 Step 1 - Who benefits from the activity, what is the extent of that benefit and who contributes to the cost of the activity » 16.2.4 Benefits Received by Individuals or Identifiable Categories of People

16.2.4 Benefits Received by Individuals or Identifiable Categories of People

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Section 122F(c) of the LGAA states “the principle that the costs of any expenditure should be recovered from persons or categories of persons in a manner that matches the extent to which direct benefits of that expenditure accrue to those persons or category of persons”.

While the LGAA sets out how costs are to be apportioned, the Rating Powers Act 1988 (RPA) is the empowering statute to collect rates. The RPA provides a specific mechanism for rating in the particular area of river and erosion protection, and therefore provides guidance for determining benefit.

Section 41 of the RPA states:

41 (2)

Where the rate is in respect of works for the protection of land from flood or erosion or for the conservation of soil or the management of water, a Board shall for the purposes of subsection (1) of this section, give consideration to,-

  1. In relation to direct benefit,-
    1. accruing from the works concerned and the responsibility, the likelihood, frequency, depth, and severity of flooding and erosion; and
    2. The likelihood, frequency, and extent of damage to land and the improvements to land; and
    3. The improvement of drainage; and
    4. The need for water management generally,-
      in relation to the actual and potential uses of land and by reference to the advantages for their care and maintenance:

Taking into account the requirements of LGAA and RPA, and the allocation of costs to cost centres, Council has considered the direct benefit in each of the following categories

  • Soil Conservation.
  • River Management.
  • River Improvements.
  • Flood Protection.

Council further considered that, for each category of benefit, the extent of benefit depends on the degree of protection and accordingly there will be different degrees of benefit within each category. Council engages technical advisers and classifiers to determine the degree of benefit in each category. The determinations of the technical advisers and classifiers are the basis for establishing direct landowner charges, rating systems, including differential rating systems, that:

  • meet the requirements of Council’s Funding Policy (in accordance with LGAA),
  • comply with the RPA,
  • are fair and equitable, and
  • are practicable, transparent and cost efficient to implement and administer.

Council considered that the Project Watershed Funding Policy, and associated landowners direct charges, rating systems and differential rating systems should identify and assess the extent of direct benefit for:

  • Land receiving soil erosion protection
  • Land receiving protection from river flooding
  • Land receiving drainage benefits, including flat land elevated above scheme assets and channels
  • Land receiving river management benefits
  • Land receiving river improvement benefits

and for each category the extent of benefit will depend on the degree of protection.

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