Rates explained

Your rates bill includes different costs. Click on the tiles below to find out how each of these costs is calculated.

Rates and charges

How your rates bill is calculated

Each year Council determines how much it needs to raise from rates and charges to fund and improve our Shire’s facilities and services.

Council then divides this required revenue by the total Capital Improved Value (CIV) of all rateable properties to create a rate in the dollar. (This rate cannot exceed the rate cap created by Victoria’s Essential Services Commission.) This rate is then applied to the Capital Improved Value of your property to determine your general rates.

Different rates are applied to different property types. This is called differential rating.

Waste management (fixed) charges, plus the Victorian Government’s Fire Services Levy, are added to create your total rates bill.

Watch this video for further clarification on how your rates are calculated and how rate capping works. 


Waste and other charges

 In addition to your general rates, other charges may also be included in your rates bill.

They are:

Waste Management charge $230

This is levied on all properties to help fund the cost of maintaining waste disposal facilities in the Shire. It is not used to fund garbage collection and disposal.

Residential Kerbside Collection charge $209

This covers the cost of collecting and disposing of domestic garbage from all dwellings within defined garbage collection areas in our Shire. The charge is compulsory for dwellings whether the service is used or not. The service uses a 120-litre wheelie bin.

Rural Kerbside Collection charge $177

This charge covers the actual cost of collecting and disposing of domestic garbage from all dwellings within defined collections areas. This charge is compulsory for dwellings who have not opted out of the fortnightly collection service. A 140-litre mobile garbage bin is the only approved container to be used for garbage collection. Each household is responsible for providing their own bin.

Commercial Kerbside Collection charge $484

Council garbage service to commercial properties is optional. Operators of these properties can choose to make their own arrangements to have their garbage removed. However, where the Council service is used, a higher charge (than for residential and rural garbage services) applies and a 240-litre wheelie bin is the approved receptacle for this service. Council has new 240-litre wheelie bins available for sale for a fee. For more information on our rubbish service visit commercial waste.

Kerbside Recycling Collection charge $131

This charge, like the residential garbage charge, covers the cost of collecting recyclables. A 240-litre wheelie bin is provided by Council for collecting your recyclable materials.

Property Based Fire Services Levy-Fixed and Variable

This is the Victorian Government's property-based levy to fund firefighting services in Victoria. All property owners pay the levy at the same time as they pay council rates. Council collects the levy through rate notices on behalf of the State Government. The levy is calculated based on the capital improved value of your property. It consists of a fixed component plus a variable component. 

The Fixed Levy is $125 for residential properties and $254 for non-residential properties. 

The Variable Levy will differ for property types such as residential, industrial, commercial and primary production. This portion of the levy is calculated as a percentage of CIV. Eligible pensioners are entitled to a $50 rebate against the Fire Services Levy for their principal place of residence.

Municipal and Environmental Charge

The fixed fee for both the Municipal Charge and the Environmental Charge has been abolished.

How to read your rates notice

How-to-read-your-rates-notice.jpg(PDF, 289KB)

Differential rating

A differential rate is simply the rate type applied to your property based on how the property is used, i.e. farm, general, commercial etc. The following are the different rate types.

Differential rates change annually. See the property types and their different rates, applied as cents/your property’s Capital Improved Value, below.    

Differential Rate Type

Rate = cents/CIV

Rate = cents/CIV

General Rate – Residential

Rateable land used solely for residential purposes.



Farm Rate

Rateable land identified and defined as farmland and which is used solely for the purpose of farming as defined in section 2(1) of the Valuation of Land Act 1960 and is deemed to be a property for primary production purposes as accepted by the Australian Taxation Office.

“Farmland” means any rateable land -
a) That is not less than 2 hectares in area; and

b) That is used primarily for grazing (including agistment), dairying, pig-farming, poultry-farming, fish-farming, tree-farming, bee-keeping, viticulture, horticulture, fruit-growing or the growing of crops of any kind or for any combination of those activities; and

c) That is used by a business:

I. That has significant and substantial commercial purpose or character; and
II. That seeks to make a profit on a continuous or repetitive basis from its activities on the land; and
III. That is making a profit from its activities on the land, or that has a reasonable prospect of making a profit from its activities on the land if it continues to operate in the way that it is operating.

To be eligible for this rate, apply in writing to Council and provide information that shows your property meets the definition of farmland.

Apply for the farm rate



Commercial and Industrial Rate

Rateable land used solely for commercial purposes, for example, shops, restaurants, service stations, hotels, motels, short-term accommodation, offices, warehouses, factories, depots and similar commercial and industrial establishments.



Recreation Rate

Rateable land where sporting, recreational or cultural activities are conducted, including buildings which may be ancillary to such activities, for example, golf and bowling clubs.



Mixed Use Rate

Rateable land which is not used solely for residential or commercial or farmland or industrial or recreational but is a combination of residential and at least one other category. An example is bed and breakfast accommodation where the owner also lives on the property.



Trust for Nature Rate

Rateable land which has a Trust for Nature Covenant applying to the land.



Vacant Land Rate – Township

Rateable land which is not part of a commercial or industrial or farming enterprise or recreational purpose or where there is no residence. This land must fall within township boundaries.



Vacant Land Rate – Other

Rateable land which is not part of a commercial or industrial or farming enterprise or recreational purpose or where there is no residence. This applies to all vacant land that does not meet the definition of “township” above.



Fire services levy

Property owners pay this annual levy in their Council rates to support emergency services.  

Council’s contracted valuer assigns an Australian Valuation Property Classification Code (AVPCC) to your property, based on how it is used.

This code (as determined under the provisions of the Fire Services Levy Property Act 2012) classifies your property’s land use into general, farm, commercial etc.

This is then used to calculate your Fire Services Levy. 

Find out more about how the levy is calculated on the State Revenue Office website.

Rates assistance

Help is available if you are struggling to pay your Council rates. Find out how and where to seek support to meet your rates payments.