Rate peg "a disgrace", says Forbes' Phyllis Miller OAM

Phyllis Miller, who was awarded an OAM for her service to local government, says a 0.7 per cent rate peg is a
Phyllis Miller, who was awarded an OAM for her service to local government, says a 0.7 per cent rate peg is a "disgrace".

Forbes Shire Council will only be able to increase rates by 0.7 per cent next year following an announcement which Phyllis Miller OAM says is "a complete disgrace".

The Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal or IPART has declared a rate peg limit of 0.7 percent for Forbes Shire Council.

"With rising wages for the public sector, the cost of construction and fuel prices reaching new highs, this is an insult to local government and our quest for long term financial sustainability" Ms Miller said.

"We are extremely concerned that this pitiful level of increase - that is the lowest in 20 years - will severely impact the ability of Council to properly manage our assets, take advantage of opportunities such as development, make co-contributions to access State and Federal Government Grants and in general pay for our ongoing high level of service.

"We pride ourselves on really delivering for the community and this rate peg will affect how we are able to do that."

Ms Miller also commented that once productive revenue streams such as interest on investments are now underperforming due to the current interest rate, making the impact of the rate peg so much more significant.

Rates make up 33 per cent of Council's income.

"Forbes Shire has always been managed very well financially and we have been really able to grow even though tough times such as drought, COVID and flood," she explains.

"Why IPART would not allow a sensible rate peg to allow us to diversify our council business is beyond me.

"I call upon the NSW Government to rethink this ridiculous decision or regional communities such as ours are really going to suffer."