SOME business fees charged by Mornington Peninsula Shire Council are likely to be frozen for four years if the Liberal Nationals opposition wins the next state election.
Although the election is not due until November 2022, Mornington MP David Morris said “freezing the cost of fees levied on local businesses is a practical and effective way to deliver that support”.
Without giving any examples, Mr Morris, in a joint news release with Opposition Leader Michael O’Brien, said some councils had not been able to resist “the temptation to bolster their financial position by slugging local small businesses”.
“Small traders who survived the 2020 COVID lockdowns are hanging on by their fingertips, and increasing council charges put their survival at risk. They need support to stay in business, not more reasons to leave,” Mr Morris, who is the opposition’s spokesperson for local government, said.
The promised freeze on charges is the third part of the Liberal Nationals local business action plan “to make Victoria the small business capital of the nation”.
Fees that would be frozen following the election of a Liberal Nationals government included footpath and road occupation fees, fees on hairdressers and beauty businesses, fees on food businesses, and fees on accommodation providers.
The full list of fees is yet to be selected “in consultation with small businesses, industry associations and local councils across the state”.