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Flooded? Forget it. Hefty land valuations to stay despite impact of disasters

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The Palaszczuk Government will not order new land valuations in areas devastated by recent floods after the regulator hiked values by 20 per cent in some areas.

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Valuer-General Neil Bray on Thursday raised land values in 30 local government areas, including flood-hit Brisbane, Ipswich, Logan, the Gold Coast, Moreton Bay, the Sunshine Coast,

Noosa, the Lockyer Valley, Scenic Rim, Somerset, Gympie and the North and South Burnett.

Valuations, which were determined last October, rose up to 20 per cent in parts of Brisbane, where thousands of homes were impacted by the February-March floods.

Brisbane Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner says the state government should freeze valuation changes like the Bligh Labor government did during the 2011 floods and reassess them.

But State Resources Minister Scott Stewart said the values were determined independently and took in data from previous floods.

He sidestepped questions about intervening, saying local governments had the power to decide whether or not to subsequently hike council rates.

“It’s really up to them to make those determinations and if they have any compassion, this is their opportunity to be able to freeze or give those discounts to those flood affected victims,” Mr Stewart told ABC Radio on Friday.

The minister said most people wanted to see the value of land they’ve invested in appreciate over time. However, people did have the opportunity to object to their valuations.

Individual landowners had 60 days to object, and some may think their land value was actually lower than it should be, Mr Stewart added.

“There is the ability for objections particularly for those properties where there have been adverse effects of their property,” he said.

“For example, if parts of the property have been washed away by creeks or the floods, they can actually apply for an adjustment there.”

Mayor Schrinner said the government should make the Valuer-General go back the drawing board.

Queensland’s most intense rain event on record affected 23,000 homes in Brisbane and residents deserved a new valuations, he said.

“The right thing to do is to simply withdraw all the valuations taken last year and start again.”

Meanwhile, the state’s peak farming body AgForce urged landholders to object or risk being lumped with higher rates or rent.

New valuations have also been released for Boulia, Burke, Cairns, Carpentaria, Cassowary Coast, Croydon, Douglas, Etheridge, Fraser Coast, Goondiwindi, Livingstone, Mareeba, Redland, Rockhampton, Toowoomba, and Townsville.

Valuations soared 350 per cent in Boulia, 328 per cent in Burke, 335 per cent in Carpentaria, 222 per cent in Croydon and 192 per cent in Etheridge.

AgForce valuer John Moore said it was up to landholders to ensure correct values and his group was ready to help members object.

“Unimproved values are done by mass appraisal, meaning your property isn’t individually valued so errors can occur,” Mr Moore said.

“It’s important you object to your new valuation if you believe the unimproved value is too high, because it could result in large savings in rates or rent.”

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