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Rates Protest Petition Handed To ARC Chairwoman

Rates Protest Petition Handed To ARC Chairwoman

Petition against the ARC rates

Statement by David Thornton, Chairman Glenfield Ratepayers, on the handing over of the Petition to Auckland Regional Council Chair, Gwen Bull

Tuesday, 14 October 2003

On 18th September, the ARC's Mr Tony Darby, Director, Operations, Information & Technology, wrote to the Department of Internal Affairs and stated - in relation to our request for a Ministerial Review of the ARC - "The Council .believes that this whole process has been initiated by a very small but vocal group of ratepayers who have received far greater press coverage than the facts warranted"

This petition of 27,416 signatures is representative of the tens of thousands of the citizens of the Auckland region who have been - and remain - outraged at the actions of the Auckland Regional Council in the setting of the rates for the first year of Direct Rating.

This figure, together with the 12,000 plus signatures in the Rodney Protest document, total approximately 40,000 signatures gathered mostly over a limited six week period.

We know that hundreds of individual letter of dispute and protest have also been sent to the council

The demand in the petition for a resetting of the rates was also supported by a Digi-Poll in the New Zealand Herald which showed 71% support for resetting the regional rates.

In view of that level of protest and opposition we are extremely disappointed that the ARC did not take the opportunity on 13th August to reset the rates. Instead the ARC is now sending penalty notices to some of the 85,663 people who, at 19th September, had not paid their rates.

On behalf of all those people, starting with hundreds who marched up Queen Street, the thousands who attended public meetings throughout the region, the 40,000 plus signatories to the petitions, the 85,000 non-payers, and the thousands more who did pay - but only out of fear -- on behalf of all those people this Rebellion campaign will continue.

We ask you to bring this petition, together with the Rodney Protest document, to your next council meeting and to permit us to bring a deputation to that meeting to address your council on the issues we believe your council needs to address on its whole rating policy. ENDS

Contact, campaign spokesman, DAVID THORNTON [Chairman of the Glenfield Ratepayers] david@Kandu.co.nz

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