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Growth In Bureaucracy Is Rampant


MEDIA RELEASE 12th March 2008

Statement from David Thornton.

Growth In Bureaucracy Is Rampant In Local Government.

Minister Must Act On Recommendations From Rates Inquiry.

The growth in the bureaucracy in central government has been mirrored with staggering increases in staffing levels in most Auckland local councils..

In the five year period to the end of 2006 staffing levels in North Shore City rose by 32%; in Manukau City by 35%; and in Waitakere City by 39%.

There has undoubtedly been a similar increase in Auckland City but that fact is hidden by transfering staff to council controlled organisations such as Metrowater.

There are also huge numbers of senior council staff – reportedly more than two hundred in the four major cities – being paid more than $100,000. A further four hundred and fifty are reported às earning between $75,000 and $100,000.

While central government salaries are paid from taxpayers nationwide, local bureaucrats are paid out of local rates, the bulk of which are provided out of after-tax income by home-owners who are coming under increasing pressure from mortgage hikes and significant power price increases.

Ratepayers are saying that despite the extra staff and the additional rates burden they do not see any improvement in services from their local councils.

It is time the government announced its intentions in making changes to the present rating system as recommended in last years Rating Inquiry.

The Minister of Local Government has not reponded to my request for her to tell me and ratepayers generally what the government proposes to do in relation to the Rates Inquiry recommendations, some of which would remove some of the burden from current ratepayers.


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