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Highway rate debate near Gunalda

MOCK signage slamming the cost of rates on the Fraser Coast has grabbed the attention of drivers on the Bruce Highway near Gunalda.

Photos of the signage were shared by Fraser Coast Facebook users on community groups and personal accounts, sparking debate about rates affordability in the region.

But Fraser Coast Regional Council Mayor Gerard O'Connell has again defended the region's rates - and said residents in other council areas also complained their own charges were "highest".

"I guess it is a case of the grass is always greener over the fence," he said.

"Council spent a lot of time developing the budget to ensure it was fair and sustainable, provided funds for the infrastructure that is needed now to cope with growth and services, such as maintaining our parks, at the levels residents demand."

Cr O'Connell said the council was continuously communicating with residents on how rates were determined.

He said impending projects, cost increases and service maintaince were some major factors.

Cr O'Connell said there were plenty of other ways people could discuss rates with council.

"Residents can contact their divisional councillor or mayor in person, by telephone, by email or by letter," he said.

"Or attend one of the monthly community chats held in shopping centers across the region or at a regular community chat held by councillors in their divisions.

"Or talk to a Councillor as the attend progress association and community association meetings, meetings of the region's chambers of commerce or during public participation before each Council meeting.

A spokesperson from Queensland Transport and Main Roads said the vandalised fatigue management signs had now been restored.

"We are disappointed when road signage is intentionally damaged, as it is in place for the safety of all road users," the spokesperson said.

"Defacing signage is senseless, dangerous and a waste of public funds."

They said anyone caught defacing property could be charged with wilful damage and road users were encouraged to report vandalism or suspicious behaviour to police or call Transport and Main Roads Traffic and Travel Information Service on 131 940.

 

The great rate debate. Photo Contributed
The great rate debate. Photo Contributed Contributed

Topics:  fraser coast regional council rates tmr



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