Welcome to Ratepayers Victoria Incorporated, advocating for Collaboration, Accountability & Transparency. Our 2022 vision is a future where Victorian ratepayers are highly connected, value adding and  engaging to increase their councils’ and state agencies’ propensity to achieve higher council rates affordability and local liveability. Our blog highlights the latest news and issues affecting ratepayers. Visit our Facebook.

When is Enough Enough

Postal address 8/1248 North Road Oakleigh South 3167
Phone 03 9570 6227 Mobile 0412 238 974
Email ; ratepayersvic@outlook.com

When is Enough Enough
We demand an apology from the minister of local government for the financial abuse of Victorian Ratepayers who has ignored our concerns.
We have witnessed home owners who have lost their properties because they cannot afford to pay the gross increases in Council rates, increases ranging from 20% to 90%.
Are now a reality.
We demand an apology from all political parties here in Victoria not one has stood up to represent and protect Ratepayer’s rights.
We demand an apology from the premier who has turn this backs on the financial hardship that have been forced on most Ratepayers.
We demand an apology
from all political parties here in Victoria where we have seen farmers commit suicide that have been hit with excessive local council rates in drought areas and beyond.
The media say one farmer in a week commits suicide. If a farmer earns no income
they should pay no income tax to the Federal Government. In this drought time farmers who earn no income should pay no council rates.
We demand an apology for the destruction of our suburbs with over developments.
We have witness the cost of electricity /Gas /Petrol/land taxes to name a few, escalate beyond afford ability.
We Ratepayers Victoria have been trying to get a Royal commission in to the operations of the out dated Victorian local Government act here in Victoria. I.E.why do contractors get paid up to four times more to do a council job than in the private sector. It has been reported in the Herald Sun that at Yarra Ranges Council 96% of recent rate notices that were sent out were incorrect. The report in the Herald Sun stated that there could be a lot more councils with incorrect rate notices that have been sent out.
We demand that rates including add on’s be frozen for the next 2 years.
We will continue the fight.
We will never surrender.
President Jack Davis

Australian Country Party/Give it Back

Australian Country Party/Give it Back

(At last we seem to be getting some support

Dear Jack,

Thanks for meeting with me a few weeks ago to discuss my party’s policies and plans for the upcoming Victorian election. As discussed, my Party has recently joined forces with the Give it Back Foundation(GIB) in our plan to grow our Party and gain electoral success.

GIB is an organization with identical philosophy to ACP, but brings extra financial and intellectual property which will enable us to become a more credible political force. None of our core values or policies have changed but you will see us rolling out more and more commonsense policies in the future.

We will be running in all 8 upper house regions and several lower house seats with the aim of winning enough seats to unseat Labor/Greens and to hold the balance of power with the Liberals. Both major parties need someone like us to hold them to account and force them to do the right thing for all Victorians; not what is in their own best interests.

In regards to our policies on local government, we will be looking to get an immediate drop in rates by 20%; not by councils cutting services, but by forcing them to become more efficient, transparent and accountable. We are also focusing on dog and cat registrations where councils can only charge once in a lifetime for each pet. We will also push for a change in how rates are determined as valuation based rates are unfair and unsustainable, especially for people on low and fixed incomes.

Many things will be happening in the lead up to the November election so please contact us if you have anyone interested in being a candidate for us or if anyone can help in handing out how to vote cards on election day.

Kind Regards,

Robert Danieli
0419 992077
Australian Country Party/Give it Back

Report on the MAV by the Auditor General

Attached is the Auditor General’s report on the MAV

Following are some of the disgraceful comments in the report on the MAV. WE have not read a report on any type of organisation which is worse than this one. The Government should have sacked the MAV

Auditor General’s comments on page VII
MAV’s conduct during this audit has been disappointing. It has been marked by repeated challenges to my mandate, the scope of the audit, its inability to provide
evidence in a timely fashion, and sometimes its refusal to provide certain information.

Page viii
There is limited scrutiny of MAV’s Rules, limited independent review of its performance beyond its annual reporting, and no clear understanding of whether MAV is delivering value for money. Indeed, my audit provides a rare independent and transparent assessment of MAV’s performance.

Page ix
While I am disappointed that MAV has not clearly accepted my recommendations or outlined how it will address them,

Page xiii
There is no formal performance management system in place for any MAV staff other than the chief executive officer, so it is not clear how staff or managers are held to account for their performance.

Conclusion Page 28
This means it cannot demonstrate that its support activities for councils are effective, efficient and economical. There are also weaknesses in MAV’s procurement practices in key areas of probity and controls for managing conflicts of interest. This increases the potential for fraud or corruption and also brings into question whether value for money is being achieved from MAV’s support for councils.

Our costly council

Our Costly Councils
Rachel Clayton Heraldsun 2/10/18
Melbourne Councillors are claiming tens of thousands of dollars in expenses
Some councils claim expenses totaling almost $100,000 in one year, analysis of annual reports and published expense report shows.
Port Phillips nine Councillors claimed almost $100,000 in a year—more than 31 times the sum of just over $3000 that was claimed by Monash’s 11 Councillors.
The local government act allows for the reimbursement of Councillors reasonable out of pocket expenses, incurred carrying out council duties.
Melbourne metropolitan councillors were paid an annual allowance of from $8490 to $30,223 and mayors were paid from $60,442 to $96,534.
Three Port Phillip Councillors claimed over $23,000 for child care and family care expenses the mayor , Cr Bernadine Voss claimed $10,593.48 Cr Tim Baxter $5536.84 and Cr Marcus Pearl $6894.50.
Cr Voss said many of her duties had to be performed after hours, making childcare arrangements often essential.
Ratepayers Victoria vice president Frank Sullivan said he had no faith in the system meant to keep councils accountable.
He wants the Auditor General to follow South Australia’s lead and scrutinise how ratepayer’s cash is spent.
“There’s little to no accountability on the control of those expenses,” he said. “At the end of the day the poor old ratepayer is the one who has to pay.” MR Sullivan said.
In 2016,a parliamentary inquiry found no “over site” of council audit, a lack of independence and work quality concerns.
Councillors at Maribyrnong Council, the third smallest municipality by area claimed $80,071.21 in a year.
Maribyrnong Mayor Catherine Cummings claimed $16,880 for childcare and Cr Cuc Lam claimed $11,884 On top of this Cr Cumming received an allowance of $76,521 and Cr Lam received $24,730.
Casey Councillors spent $75,493 in the past year to June 2017. Mayor Sam Aziz claimed $30,984. Including $15,635 on a car and travel. $9065 on communications, and $6285 on training and education.
Casey government manager Holly De Kretser said Cr AZIZ was entitled to a vehicle for council business.
Training expenses went on coaching services, professional membership and media training.
Minister for local government Marlene Kairouz said she expected councils to be transparent about expenses.

Comment (But not accountable)



Dear Member

Ratepayers Victoria is a non party political organisation and for practical and limited resource reasons we will not be endorsing candidates for the Victorian state election to be held on Saturday 24 November 2018.

However we encourage our members and member groups to carefully consider candidates. Depending on your own incorporation rules individual ratepayer groups may consider endorsing candidates.

Some of the matters that candidates should be requested to support include:

• The continuation of capping of council rates. Since the introduction of capping of rates the average increase has dropped by one third from 6% annually to around 2.5%
whoever council rate account has increased due to the increases in other charges like Fire Levee / Garbage/ Residential rate on capital improved value
• Site Value which is a TAX same tax by state government, you are paying Twice

• That the proposed new Local Government Act be thoroughly reviewed by an independent parliamentary inquiry. Ratepayers Victoria is concerned that while there are some
improvements, the proposed Act contains many sections which are poorly written and benefit Councils instead of ratepayers. The government refused to incorporate any of our
suggested improvements.

• If successful the candidate and political party should be prepared to be accessible and when requested meet with ratepayers and ratepayer groups. Initially the Local
Government Minister was accessible to Ratepayers Victoria which gave us high expectations that our concerns would be addressed. However the newly appointed Local Government
Minister has not been accessible by refusing to meet with Ratepayers Victoria or speak at a ratepayers’ forum.

• For many years complaints by ratepayers to government agencies responsible for overseeing councils has been almost futile. Candidates need to aware of ratepayers concerns
and be willing to support a review and improved re-structuring of these government agencies to provide a simpler, fairer and more responsive resolution of ratepayers’

Yours faithfully
Jack Davis
President, Ratepayers Victoria

When is Enough Enough time for Royal Commission

Ratepayers Victoria Inc.
1248 North Road Oakleigh South 3167
Email: ratepayersvic@outlook.com or ph: 0412 238 974
Web site “Ratepayersvic inc.”

When is Enough Enough.
Ratepayers Victoria has been representing ratepayers and residents for over 18 years.
First was council amalgamation what a disaster that turned out to be, now we have rate capping at 2.25% another disaster that is based on property revaluations rates with increases of 50% to 100% are not uncommon.
We receive emails and letters from concerned ratepayers every week complaining that they cannot afford to pay these massive increases. We have listed councils and councillors who are sorting the system (See Ratepayers Victoria website for the list. Council corruption and inappropriate behavior Sexual discrimination, credit card fraud, bribery and fraud with council tenders, councillor’s inappropriate behaviour at council meetings. The list is never ending.
We are aware of a country property owned by the Carter Family that council attempted to compulsory acquire, Ratepayers Victoria wrote to the local government minister in April this year and did not get a response. RPV also sent a copy to the Premier of Victoria.
On the 3rd July, 2018 RPV again wrote to the local government minister and expressed our concerns about the Bendigo Council’s decision to compulsorily acquire there farm of some 300 hectares which has been in the family for five generations. Our letter on the 3rd July to the minister was very strong with words such as “how can this happen in Australia and pointed out that at the forth coming State Elections this situation will be brought up. We stated that council decisions such as this, tugs at the heart of fair minded Australians Ratepayers Victoria received a reply from the minister’s office two days later with the comment that the decision is now with the planning minister, Richard Wynne, for a decision
RPV were pleasantly surprised to hear that on Tuesday the 10th July the planning minister announced that he had overturned the decision of the Bendigo Council and that the farm would remain with the Carter family.
This is what can be accomplished by Ratepayers when we unite.
A comment in the AGE 16th September 2018 has the Opposition Leader, Bill Shorten, calling for a national watchdog to be formed to expose corrupt public officials. Ratepayers Victoria have for some years now been calling for an independent watchdog to be put into councils to monitor that the ratepayer’s hard earned money is being spent wisely and within the local government act.
Homes may be sold to pay rates (herald sun 16/9/2018). A Melbourne council has put home owners who fail to pay their rates on notice. It plans to sell up to 153 properties to recoup $1.4 million in debt. Council will now issue a notice of intention to sell or bankrupt the 153 owners.
60 Minutes 16/9/2018. Investigations found that some councils are over valuing properties by up to 40%
Approximately 5 years ago Ratepayers Victoria held a conference. This was attended by Natalie Hutchins the then Minister for Local Government, and she made a comment back then that “the local government system is broken”. How very true this was then and sad to say nothing has changed.
Ratepayers Victoria recently had a meeting with the Auditor General and what came out of that meeting is the lack of accountability, In other words there is no follow up to see if those figures presented to them by councils, are correct or otherwise.
The old council “Spin” has been “we are abiding by the Rate capping system” but it has now been confirmed by the Auditor General that there is no independent evidence that councils are following the rate capping rules. A recent comment made to one of our committee members by the rate manager at a council out in the East was “councils do as they like”. How very true.
A gross example of councillor’s misconduct.
Milvan Muto a former Greater Shepparton City Councillor was found guilty of perverting the course of justice in the County Court and sentenced to eight month’s imprisonment. Prior to the matter appearing before the County Court, Councillor Muto was disqualified from serving as a councillor for four years by the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) for gross misconduct. Councillor Muto then appealed the VCAT decision to the Supreme Court which dismissed Mr Muto’s application to appeal the VCAT decision as there was insufficient grounds.
This year we have started 6 new rural ratepayers groups and our membership is growing by the day.
We believe it is now time for a Royal Commission into councils throughout Australia. We will be contacting our members and ratepayers to support a petition calling on the Federal Government to take immediate action.
We seek your support it won’t happen without your involvement become a member.
Go to our webpage for an application to join RPV
Jack Davis President Ratepayers Victoria

re the proposed underground

re the proposed underground

Letter to the editor

So the State Government has come up with a grand plan, uncosted, in the hope of winning votes. Interesting this underground idea. Lets go back 120 + years when our wonderful founding fathers planned Melbourne and pushed the railway lines out in the 1880’s and the houses followed. Of course now they approve the houses way out and the trains never follow. However this circular rail idea is not new. Back then about 120 years ago they decided they needed an outer circle railway and took over land for the venture. Because of costing it died but a lot of the land for it survived and 30 years ago the famous Premier Dick Hamer had the idea of turning the land that still survived for the railway into the Anniversary Trail. And there it is today used by walkers and bike riders from Ashburton through to the river at Kew.
This vote buying grand plan of the State government sounds great but is beyond our ability financially and technically. Think of the unforgiveable mess they are making of this little bit of tunnel they are currently attempting. The obvious thing to do is to ask the worlds experts to take it over. London. Remember London started their underground in 1864 – steam trains. Now they have put through 40 kms of Crossrail from west to east of London. with no mess and in no time and it wont be long and it will be open. They are the worlds experts, bring them in to do the job, that is if the Government has the billions to do it.
Actually I and others think that it would be better for the population to put in super fast trains to the outer towns so the people can live out there and come to Melbourne to work. The Opposition should make this part of their decentralization plan.
Mary Drost

When is enough enough

When is Enough Enough :

Ratepayers Victoria is an organisation established over 17 years ago Jack Davis has been President for about 16 years In all that time we have not received any financial assistance from governments, we rely on Membership Fees, unlike the Municipal Association of Victoria they receive $57 million annually to advise councils.
We are fed up hearing that governments are going to control rate increases to 2.25% Jeff Kennett stated that by amalgamating council we will see cheaper rates.
What a disaster that turned out to be.
Councils should be abiding by the rate capping policy of 2.25% but some councils are coming through the back door to inflict large increases on the ratepayer. An example is that the garbage collection component on your rate notice was included in the general rate component and subject to the rate capping .Now some councils are putting this charge on the rate notice as a separate component which is not subject to the rate cap.
Many Ratepayers are hurting some have lost their homes.
No doubt with State Elections due in November this year ,these huge rate increases which ratepayers have to bear will be a huge factor in deciding who you, the ratepayer considers which party can handle our economy best.
We are seeing Gas and electricity price increases, land taxes, child minding centers, and fire levees just to name a few.
On average 70% of council revenue is paid to staff .and then ratepayers have the extra burden of paying the contractors who actually do the work, In parliament on Thursday 23rd August 2018 ,Liberal minister ,Simon Ramsay, gave a very strong speech to tell the LG Minister that the present rate collection is most unfair and is an ancient system that goes back to the 19th Century .Country people are been treated poorly paying some three or four times in rates that the city people pay and farmers are been treated in an appalling manner. The media report that one farmer a week commits suicide due to financial problems ,how very ,very sad Councils are being treated as a money tree by governments and multinational companies.
All we hear is the talk with no action, hopefully you the ratepayer will talk at the ballot boxes in November at the State Elections. Ratepayers Victoria receive multiple emails weekly from ratepayers who are hurting but who cares, certainly not the Government or service providers.
Councillors were elected to protect and represent ratepayers what a joke they are only there to advance their political careers and enjoy overseas trips visiting sister cities or any other trips they can dream up.
RPV did invite the present Local government Minister to speak at a conference that RPV held last March .Despite two invitations and a phone call the minister did not show RPV the courtesy of a reply.
I was a Council with Monash, the bullying and intimidation sexual harassment and inappropriate use of council funds and inaccurate information at council meeting was unbearable.
I understand why Julie Banks is getting out of politics.

Jack Davis
President RPV