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Councillor Launches Petition For Lower Rates


Councillor Launches Petition Calling For Lower Rates

Howick Councillor Jami-Lee Ross is angry over Manukau City Council’s unwillingness to honour recent election promises and will be launching a protest petition calling on councillors to keep future rate increases below than the rate of inflation.

The petition comes after Manukau City Council recently set guidelines for its 2005/08 annual plan which indicated a rates rise of 5.3 percent, a dishonest position combated by only a handful of representatives. The figure was arrived at during a closed-door councillor’s forum and subsequently ratified at the February Council meeting.

Cr Ross says that only he and five other colleagues are willing to go through with the promises they made to the community during the recent election campaign and that the rest of the Council had a moral obligation to do the same.

“Last October most candidates, including the Mayor, stated their desire to keep rate increases below the rate of inflation and now is the time for them to front up and show some integrity. Over 91 percent of Manukau people voted for mayoral candidates that supported this position and that is an overwhelming message from our city.

“There are literally millions of dollars wasted every year by the Council and it is time that councillors bite the bullet. Every activity the Council goes into comes at a high cost and the ratepayers of this city have to foot the bill. The problem with Manukau City Council is that it thinks it knows how to spend ratepayers’ money better than ratepayers do themselves, and this habit needs to stop.”

Cr Ross will be personally collecting signatures from members of public until May when he will present the petition to Council on behalf of all Manukau City ratepayers. He also hopes that many supporters will assist him in the collection of signatures and has set up a website to provide printable petition forms.

“I urge every concerned person in Manukau City to sign the Lower Rates Petition to call on the Council to do the right thing. Myself and other Councillors have tried for months to reverse this situation, without any luck, and only a call from the public body can make this happen.

“I will be fighting tooth and nail for the best outcome for the residents and ratepayers of Manukau City, but only a call from the public body can keep the Council honest. I encourage every concerned person to support me in this endeavour.”

-ENDS-

Petition Forms can be downloaded from http://www.lower-rates.co.nz and can be returned via 163 Fisher Parade, Pakuranga or hand delivered to Milan’s Shoes, Picton St, Howick.


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