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Lowest rates for Auckland City

MEDIA RELEASE

June 20, 2002


Lowest rates for Auckland City

Auckland City residents will face the lowest rates increase in the region.

Councillor Douglas Armstrong, chairperson of the Finance and Corporate Business committee, says the council is holding the rates increase to a minimum.

“We’re holding rates down while at the same time making the biggest investment in infrastructure - including transport and community facilities - in the council’s history,” he said..

The council has agreed, following public consultation, to increase rates by 2.4 per cent..

This includes an 8.2 per cent increase in next year’s Auckland Regional Council levy.

Leaving out the regional council levy the overall increase is 1.6 per cent.

This increase is in keeping with the level of inflation.

Councillor Armstrong says, “This is evidence of a council that is ensuring it gets the best value for ratepayer dollars while at the same time investing a huge number of projects that will benefit both today's ratepayers and future generations.

"This is quite an achievement. Some councils facing the huge costs associated with upgrading infrastructure take the easy option and increase rates.

"This council said it wouldn't do that and we have kept our promise.

"We are keeping rates down as we don't want to rate people out of their homes or out of their businesses," he says.

The 1.6 per cent increase includes a $47 uniform annual general charge on all properties. This covers part of the cost of rubbish collection and disposal.



Councillor Armstrong says the council is getting back to where it was five years ago when all Auckland City ratepayers paid a uniform annual charge of $200 to cover some of the services they received.

He says this brings Auckland City into line with other councils in the region.
Manukau City ratepayers pay $359 in a uniform annual general charge, plus $115 for waste recycling. North Shore ratepayers pay a uniform annual charge of $520 and a $25 charge for waste recycling plus up to $1.30 for each rubbish bag. Waitakere ratepayers pay $510 in a uniform annual charge, and $22 in a waste collection charge plus a dollar for each rubbish bag.

Councillor Armstrong says a uniform annual charge for waste management is a fairer way of funding some of the services the council provides.
"If the service is the same then every ratepayer should pay the same."


ENDS

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