Castletown Town Commissioners have announced a reduction in the Town Rate of 50p in the Pound, bringing rates to 291p in the pound.
The reduction in the Town Rate is to be offset by the introduction of fixed refuse charge for domestic properties which will initially be set at £135. This will see the average property in the town pay an additional £1.45 a week or £75.20 per annum.
(Rateable values in Castletown range from £24 to £1020, the average being £119.30)
Chairman of Castletown Town Commissioners Mr Colin Leather stated that;
“My Board have long felt that the current rating system is not fit for purpose and continue to lobby Central Government with regard to a more equitable rating system for the Island.
Castletown, as the ancient capital of Mann is home to a significant number of historic properties with associated low rateable values. Throughout this political term, my members and I have striven to ensure that services in the town are administered in a manner that is fair and equitable to all of its residents. The Board have therefore concluded that a reduction in the Town rate and introduction of fixed refuse charge for domestic properties, is the fairest way to fund a service that all residents receive an equal benefit from.
The cost of refuse collection and disposal, including the towns contribution to the Southern Civic Recycling Centre is the second largest cost to the town after staffing. Separating the cost of refuse services allows for transparency in the face of year on year increases from central government and contractors. Those who have long been the largest contributors to the towns income will see a smaller percentage increase in their overall rates demand and whilst this may be unpalatable to residents with a low rated property, my board were unanimous in their desire to mitigate the inequity in the current system where some properties are effectively being subsidised by others in the town.
The riding bowl project has been receiving a lot of public attention in recent months, the efforts of our staff will be concentrated on the delivery of this project and the completion of the work around the Town hall to ensure that it provides flat level access to all users. Concept plans for future improvements to play areas within the town are being developed and we hope to be able to share these in the near future.
The plans for the redevelopment of the School Hill estate are being progressed and whilst the town rate does not fund local authority housing, we have also had to take into account the anticipated shortfall in rateable income from the properties included in this scheme”
NB: Properties with a rateable value in excess of £270 will see an effective reduction in Town Contributions
What Key Services are Provided through the Rates?
Refuse Collection and Disposal
Southern Civic Amenity Site
Southern Swimming Pool
Street Sweeping & Gully clearing (non-strategic routes)
Parks and Recreation Grounds
Public Ceremonial and Entertainment
Off Street Car Parking
Free Community Hall and Meeting Room hire for local Clubs and Charities.