Southern Downs ratepayers sign up to pay off rates

THE number of Southern Downs ratepayers opting to pay off their rates has increased by more than 50%, according to council statistics.

More than 17% of rates remain outstanding, a week after the discount due date, with more than 2500 ratepayers opting to pay by instalment or arrangement.

Director of Business and Community Services David Tuxford said the total of rates collected so far is 82.34%.

"14,478 properties paid their general rates and charges in full by the discount due date of 4 September 2015," he said.

"This time last year 14,511 properties had paid in full."

The number of ratepayers paying by instalment has increased by around almost 800 compared to last year.

The 2300 ratepayers opting to pay by instalment accounts for $2.92 million worth of outstanding rates, according to Mr Tuxford.

"By the end of September 2014 there were approximately 1,520 properties on the 'Payment by Instalment' option amounting to approximately $1.51 million of the outstanding amount."

Another 370 ratepayers have payment arrangements/commitments in place, equal to $1 million of outstanding rates.

"By the end of September 2014 there were approximately 550 properties with payment arrangements/commitments in the system that amounted to around $1.5million of the outstanding rates," Mr Tuxford said.