EMEARLD business owners have joined forces in hope people power will help drive transparency of sky-rocketing rates in the Central Highlands.
Emerald Gardens Motel and Accommodation owner Brian Scott along Western Gateway Motel owner Anthony Comino and Emerald Maraboon Motor Inn Motel general manager Dennis Daly have formed the Economically Sustainable Ratepayers Association Inc to generate discussion about rates within the region.
Mr Scott said it was an issue affecting the whole community.
"Land valuations are going down down down, but the council rates are going up up up,” he said.
"We are called the Economically Sustainable Ratepayers Association, because you've got to be able to be sustainable as a community and with these rates we can't be.”
With decreased occupancy to around 30-35% the moteliers claim they are now paying more in rates than they were when they had occupancy at around 60-65%.
Mr Comino said a review on the Gateway show an increase of 20% in rates over the past 18 months.
With the issue concerning the whole region, Mr Scott said the association wants to hear the opinions of everyone in the community.
A community meeting where you can have your say will be held at the Western Gateway Motel tomorrow at 9am.
"We are taking our list of concerns to the meeting but we want to hear the concerns of the rest of the community,” Mr Scott said.
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