ST FRANCIS PROPTERY OWNERS SPECIAL RATING AREA (SRA) LEVY
? WHY AN SRA LEVY ?
The St Francis Property Owners proposal to ‘Save St Francis’ was first presented at our AGM on 22 December 2016 and the 25% Special Ratings Area (SRA) Levy came into effect by majority vote from 1st July 2018.
We had a choice:
- Do nothing and watch our property investments continue to devalue
- Pay the Municipality more in increased rates and watch 60% of it being diverted elsewhere
- Set up a Special Rating Area (SRA) and have the Municipality pay the SRA levy back to us to be used exclusively for St Francis.
The Municipality is legally obliged to collect the levy on our behalf and pay us the proceeds within 30 days (less an administration fee of some 3%) to St Francis Property Owners Not For profit Company (SFPO NPC). This company was set up to collect donations and special rates, and to manage the spit, river and beach repair projects, the improvements to the main arterial roads and the CCTV installation project. St Francis. This same arrangement has existed for more than 10 years for the maintenance of the Canals by the St Francis Bay Riparian Home Owners Association.
There are many SRAs already set up in South Africa, and they have proven to be successful which is why we have proposed the SRA for St Francis.
Our priority projects are the arterial roads, and Phase 2A of the river/spit/beach project. Phase 2A involves (1) selecting the solution for de-silting the river, getting this sand onto the beach and holding it on the beach and (2) submitting the EIA to DEDEAT for authorisation. We expect Phase 2A to take 12-18 months before we can actually start on the restoration of river, spit and beach.
This levy will last for 10 years to restore and upgrade the infrastructure of this town after which the municipality will be responsible for maintaining it.
The SFPO Committee, the directors on the SFPO NPC and the members of our Technical committee are all volunteers, focussing on the survival and restoration of our town. We are acutely aware of the importance of the retired community to the well-being of St Francis and have established a Levy Relief fund to assist those in need. Applications for relief can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
? HOW WILL LEVY BE COLLECTED ?
Rate Payers within a demarcated area of St Francis pay an SRA levy directly to the Municipality, which is included in monthly services and rates bill. The Municipality pays this levy to the St Francis Property Owners Non-Profit Company (SFPO NPC). This company was established to collect and manage donations and the special rates, and to manage the Spit and Beach repair projects, the main arterial road improvements and the CCTV installation..
HOW IS THE LEVY CALCULATED ?
The levy is equal to 25% of the municipal rates of an existing property rates
This will exclude:
- Properties outside the demarcated area
- Sea Vista Township Property
- Any property owner who meets the exemption criteria
? SAVING ST FRANCIS CAMPAIGN FUNDING STRATEGY ?
- Appeal for donations from property owners
- An SRA was declared to raise a Levy
- Seeking Corporate Social Responsibility Investment for the upliftment of Sea Vista Township
(eg. Wind Farms)
- Initiating the specific infrastructure projects the Municipality will fund
- Establishing what funding can be sourced:
- Provincial & National Government
- Environmental projects (local and international)