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It’s what most Canberra families want to know – HOW is the budget going to affect us?

What does it mean for our hip pocket?

The cost of living was a hot topic in yesterday’s ACT Budget, with families set to fork out more for household rates, car expenses, electricity and emergency protection.

For houses, rates are rising at an average of 7%. That means the next annual household rates bill will be, on average, about $2295 for a house.

Unit owners will feel the sting too – they’re expected to fork out about $1352 a year for rates.

Discounts for early rate payments will be halved from July as well.

And rates are expected to keep rising under the Government’s plan to abolish stamp duty.

It’ll also cost Canberrans more to register their car, with fees to rise by 5%. That works out to be about $45-$56 extra.

The Fire and Emergency Levy is also going up by $42 to $294.

There is some good news for families though, with education a key budget winner.

$1.2 billion will be spent on education, including $100 million for school upgrades across Canberra and $26.2 million to expand schools in Gungahlin.

$3.3 million will also be spent on things like better signage and crossing at our schools to help improve student safety.

Parents with sick kids will also benefit from the $1.6 billion health spend, with money to go towards things like the Centenary Hospital for Women and Children expansion, new nurse-led walk in centres and support for bulk-billing services in Canberra’s south.

What do you think about the ACT Budget? How will it affect you? Have your say at our Facebook page!

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