North Shore Residential Ratepayers Hit Again
22 June 2004
Statement from David Thornton
North Shore Residential Ratepayers Hit Again By Arc Transport Rates.
Challenge To Arc To Show How These Unfair Rates Were Calculated
Although the Auckland Regional Council has changed its rating policy following the outrage at last year's huge rate increases, it has also introduced a transport rate which discriminates against North Shore ratepayers, with no train services, in favour of west and south Auckland ratepayers who will enjoy the benefits of the huge expenditure on rail projects and transport subsidies.
The re-introduction of a business differential will provide some small relief to most ratepayers, but almost 18,000 North Shore residential ratepayers, in the Inner Passenger Transport Rating Area [PTRA], will face an 8% increase in their total ARC rates due to changes in the transport rate.
RatesRebellion raised this issue in its submission to the ARC and asked that a more graded system of transport rate was needed to reflect actual public transport services provided.
We also asked for a special 'train rate' for those areas which are benefiting from the huge rates-funded expenditure on the rail system.
This bias against the North Shore and Rodney continues into the larger Metropolitan Passenger Transport Rating Area, where ratepayers, after allowing for the re-introduced business differential, will only get a rates decrease of less than 3%, while Auckland City, Waitakere, Manukau and Papakura District get decreases ranging from 13% up to 25%.
Despite those figures it is even stranger to note that businesses in the North Shore Inner PTRA will face a 62% increase while businesses in the other cities face lesser increases from 45% down to 25%.
These transport rates figures suggest that the ARC may have made some significant mistakes in calculating the rates and I have challenged the Council to reveal the basis for the formula on which they now propose to levy the transport rate in such an obviously unfair and inequitable basis.