Council abolishes 'toilet tax' for sporting clubs

SPORTING clubs will be able to spend less time selling raffle tickets to pay the council after it was decided today to abolish the 'toilet tax'.

The clubs --- from Gladstone, Calliope, Boyne and Tannum --- will collectively save $65,000 a year from only paying one sewerage charge of $657, instead of a charge for every toilet on their grounds.

For some clubs that added up to more $10,000 each year. 

The decision --- which went against council officer's recommendations --- is a win for the clubs who called a meeting to ask the councillors for help last month.

But the clubs asked for two things; a reduction in the sewerage charges, and a bigger water allocation to keep the fields, which are dry and hard, healthy.

The council wouldn't budge on the water allocation.

Clubs are already entitled to 4000kl per hectare, year which equates to $395,086 worth of water.

>>Sporting clubs bogged down by 'toilet tax'

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And the council says, if properly managed, that should be enough.

"The 10,000kl they're asking for - that's a direct cost from us to the water board, so it's a significant amount of money," Cr Maxine Brushe said.

"There must be some other things they can do to reduce the amount of water they need to keep their fields in shape."

There is a standing offer for sporting clubs to approach the council staff for advice on caring for their fields and the councillors suggested the clubs should take advantage of that offer.

But Wallabys President Andrew Lockwood said they had already done that.

"This is a good little win for us, having those sewerage charges dropped" Mr Lockwood said.

"We didn't want any short term fixes and we needed help, so it's fantastic the council has decided to help us.

"We've made it clear that no matter what the allocation isn't enough. Hopefully we can work towards getting more water."

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