Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


New Legislation will Give Govt Power to Protect Ratepayers

NoMoreRates.com

The nationwide campaign to replace the present system of council rates with a fairer system which reflects ability to pay and value for money.

MEDIA RELEASE

29th November 2012

New legislation will give Government power to intervene to give ratepayers some protection from council actions and expenditure.

Next step must be to develop alternatives to rates.

The passing of the Local Government Act Amendment Bill is one more step on the road to bringing fiscal responsibility to councils and some measure of protection for ratepayers from ever-rising rates.

By introducing greater powers for intervention the Government is giving clear notice to councils that they will be under surveillance in terms of the funding methods they propose and the effect on rates and debt levels.

Opposition to the Bill has largely come from local councils who are concerned that they will lose some of their present unfettered powers to spend rates money as they see fit, without sufficient regards to the views of ratepayers.

Despite claims to the contrary local councils, will still be able to make decisions on spending for activities which are supported by their local communities.

The new legislation requires councils to concentrate on local core infrastructure, but still allows councils to define that infrastructure, which will vary from council to council.

The main aim of the fiscal responsibility measures in the legislation is to bring order and a measure of control on the level of rates and debt.

While much of council debt is related to infrastructure the need for, and quality of, some infrastructure is often questionable.

The new wastewater scheme at Mangawhai in Kaipara District , the new Stadium in Dunedin, and now the Central Rail Link in Auckland, are all examples of poor financial planning and management.

Some non-financial issues in the new legislation have raised concerns that the Government is stripping ratepayers and residents of their democratic rights, and there may well be grounds for some of those concerns.

But local councils have become so far offside with their citizens, particularly in regard to rates, that drastic action was needed.

It is now up to councils to adjust to the new legislation and make every effort to work with their ratepayers instead of constantly putting their backs up with rates increases way beyond the rate of inflation – and without the full support of their ratepayers.

The government and councils should now work together to develop new methods of funding local governments to replace the present unfair system of property rates which takes no account of the individual ratepayer’s ability to pay.


ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>

ALSO:

With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>

ALSO:

Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>

ALSO:

Wellington: Predator Free Capital Plan

Wellington City Council (WCC), the Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) and NEXT Foundation, today announced a joint collaboration to make Wellington the first Predator Free capital city in the world. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Judith Collins’ Efforts At Self Correction

Thousands of prisoners currently in prison may be entitled to an earlier release than expected – and compensation – because Corrections has incorrectly calculated their term of imprisonment. Unless of course, the government buries its mistakes by changing the law and retro-actively getting itself off the hook… More>>

ALSO:

More Justice & Corrections

Sector Opposes Bill: Local Government Bill Timeframe Extended

The Minister of Local Government Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has asked the Select Committee to extend the report back date for the Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2). More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news