Apply for a special variation or minimum rate increase

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2019-20 Special Variation and Minimum Rate Applications

Local councils seeking a special variation to general income above the rate peg amount, or to increase minimum rate levels above the statutory limit, are required to submit applications to IPART for review and assessment. 

Councils should contact IPART to discuss their application as early as possible in the process.

There are 2 special variation options under the Local Government Act:

  • a single year increase under section 508(2), or
  • a multi-year increase (of between 2 and 7 years) under section 508A. 

Special variation and minimum rate increase applications should be submitted through IPART's Local Government Council Portal.  This User Guide gives detailed instructions on how to use Council Portal.

See past special variation and minimum rate increase applications and determinations.

Guidelines

While IPART has been delegated responsibility for assessing and determining special variations, the Government has retained responsibility for setting the policy framework under which applications will be assessed.

Councils applying for a special variation or minimum rate increase must comply with the requirements set out each year in the Office of Local Government's (OLG) Guidelines.

The Guidelines for 2019-20 financial year are now available on the OLG website (link below)

Notification Letters

Councils intending to apply for a special rate variation or minimum rate increase should notify IPART of their intention to apply by 30 November 2018 via our Council Portal.             

Notification Letters to IPART should include the following information: 

  • the percentage amount of the intended special variation or minimum rate
  • the purpose of the funds for the special variation, and
  • contact details for the application. 

Application Forms

We will shortly publish Application Forms for 2019-20 special rate variations and minimum rate increase applications.

Timeline 

Below is the timeline for special variation and minimum rate increase applications for the 2019-20 financial year.

Outcome Date
Office of Local Government Guidelines released September 2018 
Notification of council's intention to apply for a special variation or 
minimum rates increase due 
30 November 2018
Special Variation applications due  11 February 2019
Minimum Rate Variation applications due 11 March 2019
Determinations announced for Special Variation and Minimum Rate Variations 14 May 2019

Information Videos

We have produced three information videos to help councils understand how to apply for a special variation, and our assessment process:

Enquiries

Any enquiries regarding special variation or minimum rate applications should be directed to

Scott Chapman Scott_Chapman@ipart.nsw.gov.au or by phone on (02) 9290 8449. 

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