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

 


Business Groups Welcome Funding Review

Business Groups Welcome Funding Review

Local Government New Zealand’s announcement that it is reviewing local government funding will be welcome news for ratepayers, said Michael Barnett, Chair of the Local Government Forum, a group of business organisations with a keen interest in local government policy.

Mr Barnett was commenting on LGNZ’s announcement at its first quarterly briefing on Local Government Performance and Outlook.

“The business community has long been concerned about the over-reliance of property value rates to fund local government.

“Modern local government is broadly empowered in terms of its role and responsibilities yet it is restricted to a narrow, archaic funding base made up of property value rates and per property charges.

“Property value rates bear no relationship to either a person’s relative ability to pay, or use of a service. Rates prevent communities from truly assessing the costs and benefits of council activities. For many businesses, this means a heavy tax on a key asset to pay for all manner of community services many of which they may rarely, if ever, use and have very little say over.

“The last serious attempt to look into local government funding was the 2007 Independent Inquiry into Local Government Rates, also known as the Shand Inquiry. It was an honest effort but few of its recommendations have been adopted either by central or local government.

“We acknowledge that the Government’s Better Local Government should result in a more efficient local government sector and slower growth in council spending, rates, and debt than might otherwise have been the case. However, the reforms have not addressed the funding of local government in a meaningful way and rates will continue growing as a proportion of local government income, especially as demographic change creates intense pressures on councils.

“It is therefore timely to take another look at how best to fund modern local government and we congratulate LGNZ on its initiative. The business community is very keen to be part of the conversation”, concluded Mr Barnett.

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Must Sell 20 Petrol Stations: Z Cleared To Buy Caltex Assets

Z Energy is allowed to buy the Caltex and Challenge! petrol station chains but must sell 19 of its retail sites and one truck-stop, the Commerce Commission has ruled in a split decision that acknowledges possible retail price coordination between fuel retailers occurs in some regions. More>>

ALSO:

Huntly: Genesis Extends Life Of Coal-Fuelled Power Station To 2022

Genesis Energy will keep its two coal and gas-fired units at Huntly Power Station operating until 2022, having previously said they'd be closed by 2018, after wringing a high price from other electricity generators who wanted to keep them as back-up. More>>

ALSO:

Dammed If You Do: Ruataniwha Irrigation Scheme Hits Farmer Uptake Targets

Enough Hawke's Bay farmers have signed up for water from the proposed Ruataniwha Water Storage Scheme for it to go ahead as long as a cornerstone institutional capital investor can be found to back it, its regional council promoter announced. More>>

ALSO:

Reserve Bank: OCR Stays At 2.25%

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler kept the official cash rate at 2.25 percent, in a decision traders had said could go either way, while predicting inflation will pick up as the slump in oil prices washes out of the data and capacity pressures start to build in the economy. More>>

ALSO:

Export Values Down: NZ Posts Biggest Annual Trade Deficit In 7 Years

New Zealand has recorded its biggest annual trade deficit since April 2009, reflecting weaker prices of agricultural commodities such as dairy products, beef and lamb, and increased imports of vehicles and machinery. More>>

ALSO:

Currency Events: NZ's New $5 Note Wins International Banknote Award

New Zealand’s new Brighter Money $5 note has been named Banknote of the Year in a prestigious international competition. The $5 note was awarded the IBNS Banknote of the Year title at the International Bank Note Society’s annual meeting. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news