Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Legal Action Looms Against Protesting Ratepayers

28th October 2004

Statement from David Thornton

Legal Action Looms Against Protesting Ratepayers

Rates Rebellion Calls For Hold On Action And Seeks Meeting With New Arc Chair

Next Monday, November 1st, is a key date when ARC may take legal action against ratepayers who supported last year's rates rebellion against huge rate increases imposed by the Auckland Regional Council.

Although the ARC has generally refused to acknowledge the number of ratepayers involved the council's annual report shows a shortfall in rates of about $5million.

We believe that several thousand ratepayers are still withholding all or part of their rates - or are refusing to pay penalties.

Many ratepayers have rung rates rebellion leaders over the last few weeks asking for information on what action the new ARC is likely to take.

We have therefore written to new ARC chairman Mike Lee asking him to stop any legal or mortgagee action against ratepayers until we have the opportunity to meet

with him and put proposals to the new council to settle the outstanding issues arising from the rates rebellion.

The full text of the letter to Mike Lee follows;-

Dear Mike,

UNFINISHED BUSINESS ON 2003/4 RATES ISSUES

Firstly, congratulations on your elevation to the chair of the council - good luck in that position.

While the Rates Rebellion team was disappointed at its failure to win any seats on the ARC there is no doubt that the rates rebellion campaign was instrumental is ensuring that the dominant group on the previous council is no longer in power.

Now there remains the question of unfinished business in relation to those ratepayers who were the backbone of that rebellion and who withheld all or part of their rates, including those who paid their rates by instalments in response to the ambiguity on the rates demands for 2003/4. We believe that there are several thousand ratepayers in this group.

We understand that council officers proposed to the previous council a programme to institute action against 'defaulting' ratepayers on 1st November 2004. Those actions being either [a] to write to mortgagee demanding payment of any account more than $25 in default, or [b], if there was no mortgage, to advise defaulters of imminent legal action through the Courts for recovery.

However we have not been able to ascertain if this course of action has been approved by the full council as was promised earlier this year.

We have had numerous calls from ratepayers stating that either they will not pay anything, or they will not pay penalties - indeed we believe some of these ratepayers will be willing to go to court and fight the ARC.

In view of this we request that the council instructs the officers to take no action until the new council has considered the position.

Furthermore we request an opportunity to address the full council on this whole issue and to make certain proposals to the council as to how this whole matter can be resolved with out recourse to the judicial process.

In order to progress this matter we request a meeting with you at the earliest opportunity.

David Thornton

ENDS


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>

ALSO:

Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>

ALSO:

Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>

ALSO:

With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>

ALSO:

Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news