Coalition says remote communities should fund own water, sewerage

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Water and sewerage are usually local government responsibilities, but the federal government has just renewed 44 million dollars in assistance to remote communities for these kind of services. The coalition says the money should stop, but other observers say that those communities have no way of fixing their already inadequate services through rates alone.

The Shadow Minister for indigenous affairs says that municipal services should be the responsibility of local councils, and the only way to provide sustainable services is to ensure that people pay rates. But some observers say that the base of rate payers in many of the communities would be insufficient to support basic services, because of the low incomes and the high proportion of people in publicly-provided housing.

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