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

 


Farmers back major Local Government NZ funding review

9 April 2014

Farmers back major Local Government NZ funding review

Federated Farmers is fully behind a fundamental review by Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ) into the way local government and local roads are funded.

“LGNZ deserves praise for tackling a ticking time bomb made up of demographics and an ever narrowing funding base for council services and our local roads,” says Katie Milne, Federated Farmers Local Government spokesperson.

“This affects everyone but it is especially pronounced in our rural districts.

“Federated Farmers is very keen to participate in this review because for years, we have lobbied for alternative funding options over the antiquated narrow property value basis, we use for rating.

“LGNZ’s review is the biggest advance since the 2007 Local Government Rates Inquiry, which emerged from public unease over the rates burden.

“If we take local roads as an example, the way Road User Charges and fuel excise are being divvied out isn’t fair on local ratepayers, especially those in rural areas.

“The current road funding model does a huge disservice to rural ratepayers, who do much to generate our exports while providing the tourism backdrop. We back LGNZ in seeking to realign central government’s share of road funding since rural ratepayers are being ripped off.

“If last year you look at who is actually paying for our councils, almost 59 percent of local government income came from property rates. That is $4.611bn out of $7.88bn in revenue, so this is not small beer.

“New Zealand faces huge demographic challenges with an aging population and an equally aging infrastructure. Put bluntly, if we keep doing as we’ve always done then we are going to walk off the cliff.

“Just as farmers are investing billions to improve environmental performance, our towns and cities face large costs to meet higher water quality standards and even access to water.

“It may not be registering in Grey Lynn just yet but it is coming. Add in the costs of legislative requirements like earthquake strengthening of buildings and drinking water standards, then you are talking real pain unless new options are found.

“You also have more people living in denser urban housing and declining levels of property ownership. So the notion of property, the cornerstone of traditional rates, is changing fast.

“There has got be a better, fairer and more equitable way. By tackling road funding and a wider basis for funding local government we will find it,” Mrs Milne concluded.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Fossils: Ancient Penguins Lived Alongside Dinosaurs?

Penguins are much older than previously thought and their evolution probably dates back to the days of the dinosaurs, according to research on the fossilised leg bone and toes of a giant ancient penguin found in rocks near Waipara, North Canterbury. More>>

No Voda/Sky: Commission Declines Clearance For Merger

The Commerce Commission has declined to grant clearance for the proposed merger of Sky Network Television and Vodafone New Zealand. More>>

ALSO:

EARLIER:

Power: IEA Report On New Zealand's Energy System

Outside of its largely low-carbon power sector, managing the economy’s energy intensity and greenhouse gas emissions while still remaining competitive and growing remains a challenge. More>>

ALSO:

NASA: Seven Earth-Size Planets Around A Single Star

NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has revealed the first known system of seven Earth-size planets around a single star. Three of these planets are firmly located in the habitable zone, the area around the parent star where a rocky planet is most likely to have liquid water. More>>

ALSO:

Auckland Transport Case: Men Guilty Of Corruption And Bribery Will Spend Time In Jail

Two men who were found guilty of corruption and bribery in a Serious Fraud Office (SFO) trial have been sentenced in the Auckland High Court today... The pair are guilty of corruption and bribery offences relating to more than $1 million of bribes which took place between 2005 and 2013 at Rodney District Council and Auckland Transport. More>>

ALSO:

Hager Raid: Westpac Wrong To Release Bank Records To Police

The Privacy Commissioner has censured Westpac Banking Corp for releasing without a court order more than 10 months of bank records belonging to the political activist and journalist Nicky Hager during a police investigation into leaked information published in Hager's 2014 pre-election book, 'Dirty Politics'. More>>

ALSO:

EARLIER:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news