Council Welcomes Liberal Commitment On Airport Rates
Northern Midlands Council today welcomed Federal Liberal MHR Eric Hutchison’s commitment to work with a future Turnbull Government to resolve the Launceston Airport issue.
Mayor of Northern Midlands David Downie said today Council had received a written commitment from Mr Hutchinson to work with the relevant minister towards either legislative change or a ministerial direction to ensure the Airport pays rates as determined by the Tasmanian Valuer General.
In the letter to Council Mr Hutchinson says: “This undertaking includes my commitment to the view that any rates considered outstanding by the Tasmanian Valuer General should also be paid in full. It is also my view that Launceston Airport should be considered like any other ratepayer and treated accordingly.”
Mayor Downie said Eric Hutchinson, Liberal Member for Lyons, and Labor have committed to resolving this issue.
“Labor has previously promised to legislate within 100 days to settle this matter if it is elected,” Mayor Downie said.
“This is good news for Northern Midlands’ ratepayers and we hope to have a resolution to this long standing matter,” he said.
Mayor Downie said it was a matter of principle that the Airport should not be allowed to behave differently to other ratepayers who disputed their rates. Ordinary ratepayers are required to pay their assessed rates even if disputed, with any subsequent reduction later repaid by Council.
“This is the position we have argued all along. It is only because Launceston Airport is owned by a big corporation that they believe they can get away with it,” Mayor Downie said.
The Northern Midlands Council would like to thank Eric Hutchinson for his ongoing commitment to have this matter resolved.