Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 

Local Government Spending Must Be Constrained


Local Government Spending Must Be Constrained

"Rodney Hide's Bill aimed at constraining local government spending is a welcome initiative", the executive director of the New Zealand Business Roundtable, Roger Kerr, said today.

"If it had been in place right now, Aucklanders would not be facing anything like the exorbitant spending on uneconomic projects funded by the Auckland Regional Council. Last year's local government legislation gave councils even more expansive roles and a so-called power of general competence. We can expect more problems of this kind.

"The Local Government (Rating) Act was passed as recently as 2002. The need to revisit it arises precisely because the government took no notice of groups calling for more effective constraints on councils. There have been statutory constraints on council spending in Britain and further caps are being mooted. Mr Hide's Bill is in line with such ideas."

Mr Kerr said that, contrary to the statement by the National Party local government spokesman Gerry Brownlee, the problems of council spending had little to do with responsibilities that central government had "fobbed off" on to them. Most of them were of their own making.

"The last thing we want is for the government to hand over a cheque book to councils as Mr Brownlee suggests. The government has already given them a cheque book and the outrageous rate increases are the result. Mr Hide's proposal to directly constrain rate increases is the right approach."

Mr Kerr noted that the National Party spokesperson for finance, Don Brash, had been raising similar ideas to Mr Hide's for limiting increases in central government spending to inflation and population growth.

"These kind of constraints are essential to prevent business development from being crowded out by excessive public spending and to promote economic growth", Mr Kerr concluded.

"The government should support consideration of Mr Hide's Bill by a select committee if it is serious in saying that economic growth is its top priority."

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Media Mega Merger: StuffMe Hearing Argues Over Moveable Feast

New Zealand's two largest news publishers are appealing against the Commerce Commission's rejection of the proposal to merge their operations. More>>

Elsewhere:


Approval: Northern Corridor Decision Released

The approval gives the green light to construction of the last link of Auckland’s Western Ring Route, providing an alternative route from South Auckland to the North Shore. More>>

ALSO:


Crown Accounts: $4.1 Billion Surplus

The New Zealand Government has achieved its third fiscal surplus in a row with the Crown accounts for the year ended 30 June 2017 showing an OBEGAL surplus of $4.1 billion, $2.2 billion stronger than last year, Finance Minister Steven Joyce says. More>>

ALSO:

Mycoplasma Bovis: One New Property Tests Positive

The newly identified property... was already under a Restricted Place notice under the Biosecurity Act. More>>

Accounting Scandal: Suspension Of Fuji Xerox From All-Of-Government Contract

General Manager of New Zealand Government Procurement John Ivil says, “FXNZ has been formally suspended from the Print Technology and Associated Services (PTAS) contract and terminated from the Office Supplies contract.” More>>