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More than $2 million approved in rates rebates

AUCKLAND CITY COUNCIL MEDIA RELEASE

14 December 2006

More than $2 million approved in rates rebates

More than 4500 Auckland City residents will receive more than $2 million worth of rates relief due to the extended criteria for the central government and Auckland City rates rebate scheme.

"We are delighted at the uptake of the scheme, which is more than five times the number for the whole of the last financial year," said Councillor Vern Walsh, Chairperson of the Finance and Corporate Business Committee.

"We estimate there are approximately another 3000 ratepayers who could benefit from a rebate, so I encourage anyone who is on a fixed, or low income, or a benefit to call Auckland City to find out if they are eligible," said Mr Walsh.

The criteria for rates rebates have been extended by central government and Auckland City this year, so more people are eligible.

The key changes to eligibility are as follows: · an increase in the maximum rebate from $200 to $500

1 in most cases the income threshold to receive a full rebate has increased from $7,400 to $20,000

2 some people earning over this figure will also be eligible to receive a rate rebate depending on their rates bill; · for example, a married couple who received a New Zealand Superannuation of $24,456 and are paying annual rates of $1,746 or more would still be entitled to a maximum rebate of $500 · an increase in the additional income allowance for each dependent from $156 to $500.

Of the Auckland City ratepayers who have had their rates rebates applications approved, the average rebate is $476.

Auckland city ratepayers can get more information on rates rebates and useful examples of how the rates rebate is calculated by visiting www.aucklandcity.govt.nz or phoning 379 2025.

The closing date for rates rebates is 30 June 2007. Even if people have paid all or part of their rates, they can still apply for a rebate.

ENDS

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