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Councils urged to think of ratepayers

Councils urged to think of ratepayers

The National Party’s challenging councils throughout the country to lay their party politics aside and think about the ratepayers they’re supposed to represent.

“Some mayors are scoffing at our concerns about the Local Government Bill, but it’s incredible how close some of those critics are to the Government,” says National Local Government spokesman Gerry Brownlee.

“The critics include Waitakere mayor Bob Harvey - the former President of the New Zealand Labour Party, Margaret Shields - Labour’s current Pukerua Bay Branch chairwoman, she’s also a former Labour MP and Minister.

“Then there’s Dunedin’s Sukhi Turner a Green Party Member and Christchurch’s Garry Moore who claims to have had a life-long association with the Labour Party.

“The National Party is again repeating its challenge to those critics to guarantee their constituents that rates will not rise over the next five years as a direct result of this ill-conceived legislation,” says Mr Brownlee.

“The National Party always expected some local authority leaders to rally against our attack on this Bill, clearly the prospect of more power is something they’re looking forward to.

“But thinking ratepayers, who’ve ever questioned council spending, should be extremely concerned.

“This Bill, being rushed through Parliament under urgency, is divisive confusing and ultimately bad news for anyone who rents or owns a property,” says Mr Brownlee.

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