Councils' work integral to economic transformation
Councils’ work integral to Government’s economic transformation agenda
For immediate release on 26 September 2006
Local government, through its economic development and tourism work, is an integral player in supporting the Government’s economic transformation agenda, says Local Government New Zealand’s Vice-President Kerry Prendergast.
“The Government has recognised that local government is integral to developing and attracting skilled workers, stimulating local economies and innovation, funding tourism, and developing much needed infrastructure for our communities.
“Last week in a media release, organisations represented by Business NZ called for a reduction in rates and a reduction in services currently provided by councils.
“What they don’t realise is this would lead to a reduction in those services directly benefiting business. Neither would any rates reduction be significant, as the majority of local government spending is on the infrastructure needs that business promotes as being critical to its operations.
“If councils cut back on these discretionary services and businesses still want to reap the benefits of these services, the private sector or central government would have to pick up the cost. Either way, businesses would continue to pay, directly or indirectly through their taxes.”
“Local Government New Zealand looks forward to the independent rates inquiry. We believe it will bring a more structured analysis to the rates debate, other than interest groups asking to pay less without any acknowledgement of receiving fewer benefits,” says Ms Prendergast.
Local Government New Zealand is the national voice of all 85 councils of New Zealand.