A NSW tribunal has handed down the maximum overall increase in ratings income for NSW councils.

The new 2 per cent rate peg for 2021-22 will help NSW councils maintain essential services to their communities, a NSW local government lobby said this week.

“The 2021-22 rate peg is more than half-a-percentage point down on this year, and will certainly go some way to helping local government continue to provide the services and maintain the infrastructure so critical to our communities right now,” Local Government NSW (LGNSW) President Linda Scott said.

“It won’t allow local governments to mitigate against the additional costs incurred following extended drought, bushfires, floods and COVID.

“It’s tough right now for everyone. Of all levels of government, councils have the strongest grassroots perspective on the job losses and economic damage.

“No council in NSW is looking to increase rates beyond what is necessary – together, we are working incredibly hard to save jobs and stimulate local economies by investing in community infrastructure projects and community services.

“Councils are focused on driving a locally-led recovery.”

Cr Scott said LGNSW had long argued for tax reform in NSW.

“Now is the time we need to adopt new approaches to ensure we emerge from this dreadful period as a safer, stronger NSW,” she said.