THE possibility of a zero rate rise was flagged at Shoalhaven City Council’s meeting last night.

Cr Greg Watson called for “restraint” in council’s taxing and charges policy, saying leaving fees and costs unchanged would ensure council played its part in helping residents during tough economic times.

Cr Watson said council charges had increased rapidly in recent years, because “they are not covered by any fiscal restraint such as the rate pegging policy of the state government, and this is a relatively easy way of increasing council’s revenue stream”.

General manager Russ Pigg warned council stood to lose about $1.76 million if it left rates unchanged, and by not increasing fees and charges “the amount of revenue foregone would increase significantly”.

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