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More information needed about Govt rates inquiry

23 August 2006

More information needed about Govt rates inquiry

News that the Government is to establish an independent inquiry into rates issues is being met with cautious optimism by the Green Party.

The Green Party and the National Party yesterday discussed draft terms of reference for a select committee inquiry into rates. However the Government today announced a separate inquiry into similar issues.

"It is good to see that the Government has acknowledged the very real need for an inquiry into rates issues, but the Green Party is reserving judgement on whether or not this commission of inquiry will be effective until we have seen its terms of reference and timeframe," Green Party Local Government Spokesperson Metiria Turei says.

"In particular, the Green Party believes any inquiry into rates needs to address the extent to which local government can and should be funding public transport, and rates remission issues regarding Maori land. These were included in the draft terms of reference for a select committee we negotiated yesterday, and we would certainly not support any inquiry which ignored these issues.

"We look forward to seeing more detail about the proposed inquiry, and when we do we will decide whether a select committee inquiry or an independent inquiry is the best outcome," Mrs Turei says.


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