IPART has approved applications from Bellingen Shire and Port Macquarie-Hastings councils to increase general income above the 1.5% rate peg from 1 July 2017. Bellingen Shire Council has received approval to permanently increase its general revenue by 6%, including the rate peg, to fund a sealed roads renewal program, reduce its infrastructure backlog and improve the council’s financial sustainability. Port Macquarie-Hastings Council has had its application for a permanent increase of 5.39% approved, replacing an existing special variation expiring on 30 June 2017. The additional revenue, which includes the rate peg, will fund ongoing road network maintenance and renewal.