Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Councils Show Scant Regard for Ratepayers

Councils Show Scant Regard for Ratepayers

Monday 18 Mar 2002 Gerry Eckhoff Press Releases -- Governance & Constitution

The extravagant 15 percent planned rates increase over the next three years in Christchurch will be nothing compared with the sorts of increases that will be seen around the country if the Government presses ahead with moves to grant local councils powers of general competence, ACT Local Government Spokesman Gerry Eckhoff said today.

"I would expect to see many other councils this year come out with excessive increases similar to those proposed in Christchurch. The average increase around the country last year was about four-and-a--half percent, a level which shows no regard at all for the ratepayers.

"It is patently wrong for councils to be increasing charges at double the rate of inflation and to me this demonstrates a lack of financial discipline - not to mention extravagance. I believe that councils should limit increases to the rate of inflation and no more.

"But what further concerns me is that the Minister Sandra Lee is rushing ahead with plans to grant the councils powers of general competence. At the moment councils can't do anything, or spend money on anything unless they can specifically point to a rule which lets them. The `powers of general competence' contained in the new Local Government bill will reverse this, meaning that the councils and their officials can make you do anything they want, or spend your money on any pet project - if YOU can't point to any rule which specifically says they can't.

"If people think rate rises of 15 percent over the next three years are bad, I say to them, wait till councils get the powers of general competence - you ain't seen nothing yet.

"Councils will inevitably get involved in all sorts of extra-curricular activities. I think Sandra Lee and friends will encourage councils to get involved in central government activities such as health, education and welfare.

"The Minister will use councils as a stealthy way of effectively increasing taxes. The Minister talks about `partnership' with the councils, but a true partnership is give and take - the Minister just wants to take.

"ACT says there needs to be less government, not more and lower taxes. This Government is taking us in completely the wrong direction," Gerry Eckhoff said.

For more information visit ACT online at http://www.act.org.nz or contact the ACT Parliamentary Office at act@parliament.govt.nz.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Peters/Ardern Triumph

There are a lot of good reasons to feel joyful about this outcome. It is what so many young voters – the best hope for the country’s future – wanted.

Far more important than the implications for the Economy Gods ( is the dollar up or down? ) last night’s outcome will also mean many, many vulnerable New Zealanders will have a better life over the next three years at least.

Yet the desire for change was in the majority, across the country..>>>More


Reaction

Labour on its agreement |Peters: Post-Election Announcement Speech | Greenpeace “cautiously hopeful” about new Government | ACT - Madman on the loose | E tū ecstatic | Chamber welcomes the outcome | Greens on their joining Govt | EDS welcomes new govt | Immigrant groups worry | Feds ready to engage new coalition government | Labour Ministers of the Crown announced

 

Climate: Increasing Greenhouse Emissions Hit NZ

New Zealand is seeing impacts of excess greenhouse gas emissions in our climate and oceans, according to the latest national report from the Ministry for the Environment and Stats NZ about the state of the atmosphere and climate…More>>

ALSO:


Wellington.Scoop: Arrests At Blockade Of "Weapons Expo"

“We encourage people in Wellington to get down to the Westpac Stadium now for a day of awesome peace action. There will be plenty of food, music and activities to keep us sustained through the day.” More>>

ALSO:

Rorschach Restructuring: PSA Taking Inland Revenue To Court Over Psychometrics

The Public Service Association will be seeing Inland Revenue in Employment Court over its intention to psychometrically test employees reapplying for their roles at the department as part of its controversial Business Transformation restructuring plan. More>>

ALSO:

Nuclear Disarmament: Nobel Peace Prize 2017 Awarded To ICAN

Congratulations from iCAN Aotearoa New Zealand to international iCAN, the other iCAN national campaigns and partner organisations, and the countless organisations and individuals who have worked so hard for a nuclear weapons-free world since 1945. More>>

ALSO:

Expenses: Waikato DHB CEO Resigns

An independent inquiry has identified that Dr Murray had spent more than the agreed $25K allocated for relocation costs, and other unauthorized expenses involving potential financial breaches of the chief executive’s obligations. More>>

ALSO:

Wellington.Scoop: Sad About The Trolley Buses?

The Regional Council’s MetLink is today spending money to tell us that it really loves Wellington’s trolley buses, even though they’re all being taken off our roads by the end of this month. More>>

ALSO:

Post-Election: Preliminary Coalition Talks Begin

New Zealand First will hold post-election preliminary discussions in Wellington with the National Party tomorrow morning and the Labour Party tomorrow afternoon. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election