At the Council meeting on 19 September 2023 Council resolved to go to the community and consult on a proposal to apply to the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) for a permanent Special Variation (SV) of either a one-year SV of 41.5% in 2024-25 (including the forecasted rate peg of 3.5 per cent) or a two year SV of 25.5% in 2024-25 (including the forecasted rate peg of 3.5 per cent) and 18.0 per cent in 2025-26 (including the forecasted rate peg of 2.5 per cent), representing a cumulative Special Variation of 48.1 per cent over two years. 

SV Options



Cumulative increase over SV implementation period

Base Case




Sustainability Scenario

- 1 Year SV




Sustainability Scenario

- 2 Year SV





Consultation Live Stream and Recordings

Council Meeting - 19 September 2023

Live Stream | Narrandera Shire Council (


Barellan - 10/10/2023


Grong Grong - 11/10/2023



Sandigo - 12/10/2023



Narrandera - 26/10/2023



What is a Special Variation (SV) and Rate-Pegging?  

Normally general rates increase each year in line with an amount set by IPART. This amount is calculated annually based on methodology including a local government cost index and is commonly called the ‘rate peg’.
For the 2023/24 financial year, the rate peg applied to NSW councils including Narrandera Shire Council is 3.7%. An assumed rate peg of 3.5% for 2024/25 and 2.5% for 2025/26 is being utilised as an estimate for the purposes of this consultation.

If a council’s rate revenue is not sufficient to maintain service levels, undertake capital renewals and ensure sustainability, it can apply to IPART to increase general rate revenue by more than the rate peg. This is known as a Special Variation (SV). To apply for an SV, councils must demonstrate to the community and IPART that they need the money and have implemented improvements to be as efficient and productive as possible. Since 2016/2017 79 of the state's 128 general-purpose councils have applied to IPART for an SV. Those increases have varied from just 6.3% (Tweed) up to 92.8% (Strathfield). An annual list of approvals is published on the IPART website Media Release (


Is the SV increase permanent?  

Yes, in this instance, if approved the proposed SV will increase the general rate base permanently, commencing in 2024/2025. The rate base as from the 2025/26 for option one, or from the 2026/27 for option two, will increase by the annual rate pegging limit as set by IPART.


What will the SV fund?

If implemented the special variation will generate an additional $2.3m. These funds will be used as follows:

  • Ensure financial sustainability.
  • Upgrade of the Narrandera stormwater system (loan repayments on Council’s share of that cost)
  • Maintain existing service levels.
  • Staff salary system improvements.
  • Technology upgrades including cyber security and a new enterprise management system.
  • Compliance including the Audit Risk and Improvement Committee and risk management.
  • Infrastructure renewals to reduce the backlog in asset conditions.


Why is this increase in rates necessary?

Council’s income from rates has not kept pace with increases in expenses and this has meant that Council has over time become unsustainable and almost totally dependent on grants for capital renewals. The need to upgrade the stormwater system in Narrandera is an important component of the challenge faced by Council, but it is only one of many factors impacting the long-term sustainability of the organisation. The combined effects of ongoing rate pegging at levels below actual cost, fair value accounting for assets, increasing compliance cost and growing community expectations fuelled by the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal process have taken their toll.


How much will the rates change?

Rate Category

 Ave. Rate 2023/24

 Ave. Rate 2024/25

   Ave. Rate 2025/26









1 Year SV




2 Year SV












1 Year SV




2 Year SV












1 Year SV




2 Year SV





How do my rates compare to other councils?

The Office of Local Government groups councils with other similar councils for comparison. Narrandera Shire Council is in Group 10 with 22 other councils. This group of councils represents a diverse cross-section of geographies and communities across New South Wales. The neighbouring Councils of Leeton and Griffith have also been included in this graphic for comparative purposes. (We have utilised the 21/22 figures as those are the most recent published)

Rate Category

  Average Rate 2021/22

Average Rate 2024/25 if the SV is implemented







Group 10 average


















Group 10 Average


















Group 10 Average










How can I have my say? 

Narrandera Shire Council values community input and actively seeks feedback during the consultation period for the Special Variation. The consultation period ends Friday 3 November 2023.
You can email or write to 141 East Street Narrandera, 2700. You can also make a submission online, select Have Your Say at the bottom of this page.

Community Engagement Sessions will be held as follows:

27 September 2023 - 5.30pm- 7pm - Narrandera Ex-serviceman’s club

10 October 2023 – 5.30pm-7pm - Barellan Hall

11 October 2023 – 5.30pm-7pm – Grong Grong Hall

12 October 2023 – 5.30pm-7pm – Sandigo Hall

18 October 2023 – 10am-12pm – Narrandera Ex-servicemen’s club

26 October 2023 - 6.30pm-8.30pm - Narrandera Ex-servicemen’s club

One on One meeting’s can be booked through Council – 69595510

The Mayor and General Manager are happy to attend meetings of your organisation if invited.

Following extensive community consultation, should Council resolve to apply to IPART for a Special Variation, members of the public will also be able to make a submission to IPART in February 2024. 


When will the decision on the Special Variation be made?

The decision on the Special Rate Variation will be made by Narrandera Shire Council after intensive community consultation has been undertaken.
Following the public consultation period, a further report will be considered by Council in November 2023. At that meeting, Council will make a final decision as to whether it will apply to IPART for the Special Variation. If IPART approves the application, the first stage of the increase will be effective in July 2024.


Online Special Variation Estimator

Please note an estimate only is provided and is subject to change due to the Valuer General assessment of your land value. This does not include Sewer, Water, Waste, Recycling or Stormwater charges. This estimate cannot be substituted for actual Rates Notices and Council cannot be held liable for an incorrect estimate. The information is provided in good faith; however, Council makes no statements, representations or warranties about the information provided on this page.


Special Variation Survey

Narrandera Shire Council understands the importance of your opinions and we encourage all residents to participate in this survey. Your responses will remain anonymous, and the data will be presented at the November council meeting to assist the Councillors in their decision-making process. Please follow the below link to complete the survey.


TIS National Interpretative Service 
TIS National is a language service - phone 131450


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