Rates, services, expenses

BUSINESS rates in Cooma are more than double that of similar sized councils the latest figures released by the NSW Office of Local Government has found.

The report, Comparative Information on NSW Local Government for 2012/2013, shows that the average business rate for Cooma-Monaro Shire Council was $4,089.86. Councils in the same group including Cowra, Leeton, Parks, Palerang, Tumut, Young and Yass, charged an average rate for businesses of $1,890.97.

Residential rates in Cooma were also higher than the group average with homeowners paying on average of $742.73, which is $90.21 more than the group average.

Meanwhile, farmland rates for Cooma-Monaro were more than half the group average at $1,100.84.

The annual report is used as a measure of local government performance.

It provides a snapshot of each individual council and outlines a council's spending on services such as the environment, water and sewerage, recreation and administration, as well as average rates and charges.

Cooma-Monaro Shire Council spent more money on most services per capita compared to the other councils in the group including on governance and administration, the environment including waste, water and sewer services, community services, education and housing, safety and health and recreation and culture.

In 2012/2013 Cooma council had a revenue of $26,673,000 and expenses of $29,286,000.

Most of council's expenditure is spent on public order, safety health water and sewer, followed by roads, bridges and footpaths. Governance and administration makes up 20 per cent of council's expenditure, while community services, education and, housing and amenities makes up 13 per cent.

The figures are also used to assess council's financial sustainability and infrastructure management.

In 2013 the treasury corporation (TCorp) assessed council;'s financial sustainability rating as weak with a neutral outlook and the infrastructure audit assessed council's infrastructure management to be weak.

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