RCV probes alternative income streams for rural councils

Rural Councils Victoria (RCV) has engaged SGS Economics and Planning to explore specific funding challenges facing its member councils.

The research also aims to identify potential alternative income sources for rural councils struggling financially to meet the needs of their communities.

Such challenges can stem from smaller dispersed populations, lower rates base, and large geographic service areas.

Rural councils rely heavily on federal and state government grants to service the needs of their ratepayers and to remain financially viable.

The own-source income options being examined by SGS go beyond rating, fines, fees, grants and contributions, and will include those being used currently by local governments within Australia and internationally or those identified as opportunities that have potential to support the ongoing financial sustainability of RCV members.

To that end, SGS is conducting a survey of local governments across Australia (metro, rural and regional) to share examples of own-source income options (beyond rating, fines, fees, grants and contributions).

This survey would best be completed by the council’s chief financial officer or another staff member with detailed knowledge of the council’s own-source income streams.

Only one response is required per council.

CFOs who would prefer to speak directly with the research team, or who have further questions about this project, can contact Tom Milverton of SGS Economics and Planning at TMilverton@sgsep.com.au or via phone at +613 8616 0331.