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

 

Departure Speech: Governor-General’s State Farewell Luncheon

"...Unfortunately I was unable to get to the Antarctic, the Chatham Islands and the Kermadecs. A dicky heart thwarted our travel to the Antarctic; and even though I volunteered to parachute into the Kermadecs to join the Young Blake expedition, time, commitments and officials frustrated my plans to visit the Kermadecs and Chathams." More>>

ALSO:

New Research: Most Homeless People Working Or Studying

“The cost of housing has been rising without corresponding increases in income, whilst the number of state houses per capita has been in decline. Many low-income people are missing out on housing, whether we recognise them as ‘homeless’ or not. More>>

ALSO:

Post-Traynor: New Offender Info Sharing Plan

“This Bill delivers on that step-change by moving away from name-based records held by individual agencies to a shared, anchor identity based on unalterable information, such as fingerprints and facial recognition. It also gives agencies access to the drivers’ licence photo database and birth, death and marriages information." More>>

  • NZ Law Foundation - New $2M fund for research on information challenges
  • Littoral: New Ship To Deliver Enhanced Naval Capability

    Defence Minister Gerry Brownlee says the Government has approved a Ministry of Defence and New Zealand Defence Force recommendation to request tenders for a new naval ship to support littoral operations. More>>

    July:

    After King's Labour Snub: Māori Party And Kiingitanga To Work Together

    Māori Party Co-leaders Te Ururoa Flavell and Marama Fox met with Kiingitanga representatives in Wellington yesterday to discuss working together on key issues for the betterment of Māori. More>>

    ALSO:

    Waitangi Claim On Rehabilitation: The 'Justus' System For Māori Not Good Enough

    Closing statements at the Waitangi Tribunal case against Corrections called for immediate steps and a comprehensive review to address the high rate of Māori reoffending. More>>

    ALSO:

    Advice: PM Sets Rules For Ministers' Treatment Of Public Servants

    Prime Minister John Key has laid down the law about the way ministers and public servants should interact, saying ministers may not always like the advice they receive, but they must listen to it carefully, respectfully and professionally. More>>

    Gordon Campbell: On The Funding Changes In Special Needs Education, And Uber

    The plan to strip out the educational support for older “special needs” children in order to meet the existing shortfall in funding for special needs in early childhood education is so miserly and relentlessly stupid as to defy belief… More>>

    SPECIAL EDUCATION (& More):

    Online Learning Plans:

    Get More From Scoop

     

    LATEST HEADLINES

     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
    Regional
    Search Scoop  
     
     
    Powered by Vodafone
    NZ independent news