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Waitakere's rates hike unacceptable

Friday, June 3rd, 2005

Waitakere's rates hike unacceptable

Waitakere's rates rise of 7.65% this year is the second highest in the northern region and unacceptably high, the Employers & Manufacturers Association says.

Commenting on its submission presented this afternoon, EMA's chief executive Alasdair Thompson said if the Council kept this up it would soon face a revolt by ratepayers.

Mr Thompson noted the Waitakere City Council's analysis shows business properties represent 6.7% of the city's rating base but pay 20.5% of the city's rates.

"Businesses pay $4.07 for every $1 of equivalent property value paid by residential property owners," he said.

"Many residential property owners own properties of far higher value than businesses, but it's the business property owners who subsidise well heeled, residential owners.

"But we understand as part of its review of its Long Term Community Council Plan (LTTCP) next year, Waitakere will consider moving to CV rating.

"We would strongly applaud this. Such a system dispenses with a business differential altogether, though business rates would remain about 2.5 times higher than residential rates.

"EMA is also pleased Waitakere is undertaking a review this year of the level of its Uniform Annual General Charge (UAGC). This is currently set at 23.5% of total rates but should rise to 30% of rates."

ENDS


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