A Statement from the Mayor - Covid-19

  • Public Notice
30th March 2020
A statement from Mayor Vickers around the Covid-19 situation on the West Coast. Where to find information and how Council can help.

A Statement from the Mayor

The Coronavirus Pandemic is changing life for all of us, all of us have and will make sacrifices, though some have lost more than others. I want to thank the Premier for his leadership of our State in these difficult times. He has put in place the rules and restrictions that we need to get through this, and I am sure he will continue to do so.

I understand many of you are frightened or anxious but there is no need to panic. Instead of focusing on the unknown, follow the rules.

The basic rule is simply, if you do not need to leave home, don’t. Don’t congregate wherever that may be, don’t congregate at the supermarket, get your supplies and leave, don’t congregate on the footpath, get to where you need to go and get home.

Right now, despite how difficult it may be, I ask you to keep informed on the current rules and to follow them.

I also want to remind you that we are a community and we must support each other. This is not the time for gossip, fighting, or agitating. Keep calm, don’t spread rumors or fake news causing distress to others and support each other. Instead of gossip, reach out and provide support from an appropriate physical distance.

I know many of you are suffering financially, individuals, families and businesses.

The Federal and State Governments have announced a range of support much of which you will received automatically but if you need more information please contact:

Centrelink - https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/centrelink

Business Tasmania - https://www.business.tas.gov.au/home or 1800 440 026


The Tasmanian Government Coronavirus Website - https://www.coronavirus.tas.gov.au/

Following the lead of the Premier, the West Coast Council will do its part to help. We are:

  • No longer charging interest on outstanding rates balances.
  • Ceasing new debt collection activity for 2019/2020 rates balances.
  • Offering a streamlined process to seek deferral of 2019/2020 rates if you are experiencing hardship.
  • Offering increased flexibility in 2019/2020 rates payment plans.
  • Paying our suppliers as soon as possible.
  • Providing refunds to all those who can no longer use sport, recreation and community facilities.
  • Switching off parking meters.
  • Offering our innovation grants for businesses seeking to transform in the wake of COVID-19.
  • Continuing to employee people and provide vital services to the community.
  • Writing to residential and commercial tenants to offer rent relief to those experiencing hardship.

Over the coming months I have asked the Council team to prepare additional support measures including:

  • Preparing our budget on the basis that no one should receive a higher rate bill in 2020/2021 than they did this year (unless there has been building work or a change of use).
  • Reviewing our fees and charges to ensure that we support development and businesses.
  • Along with all Tasmanian Council’s developing a hardship policy that will guide rates remissions, postponements and payments for those affected by COVID-19.
  • Conducting a review of our current grants to provide even greater support for business innovation.

We stand with you and support you, especially those experiencing the full impact of COVID-19. For those of us in the community that are not experiencing hardship I encourage you to continue to pay your rates. It is this funding that allows us to continue to employ people in the community, continue to provide services such as waste management and infrastructure maintenance and offer support to those that need it. When those who can pay rates do, we can support those who need help now.

I also ask that as our Council team modify operations to protect staff and the community that you have some patience and understand many of our normal operations have had to be changed.

Mayor - Phil Vickers