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Tauranga District Council's plans applauded

Media statement Friday, May 7th, 2004

Tauranga District Council's plans applauded

The Employers & Manufacturers Association (Northern) congratulated the Tauranga District Council today, both for shifting to Capital Value rating and for setting a low (1.1%) rate increase.

Chief executive of the EMA, Alasdair Thompson, welcomed the Council's comments in the 'major focus' section of its rating policy; they parallel much of EMA's thinking set out in the appendices to our submission, he said.

"Business people in Tauranga will be pleased the council has abolished the business differential with the shift to setting rates based on Capital Value." Mr Thompson said.

"The change will be good for attracting business and job growth.

"We welcome too the review of fees and charges so the increased costs of facilities and services provided by Council are met by the users of them, not by the general ratepayer.

"A similar note of congratulation applies in respect of the targeted rates Council is introducing.

"Nevertheless both the annual plan and long term council community plans would be enhanced by a programme to put into action council's statement of good intentions.

"EMA notes too that revenue from rates is projected to rise over the coming year by 3.22% while user fees and charges are projected to rise by 2.42%.

"Over the longer term this trend, with rates increasing faster than user fees, appears inconsistent with Council's intention to shift the rating balance towards user pays," Mr Thompson concluded.

The Employers & Manufacturers Association (Northern) has 418 member organisations in the Tauranga District employing 5939 staff with a total payroll over $205 million annually.

In all, EMA Northern represents 7600 member organisations employing 260,000 staff from Taupo north. EMA's constituent associations have been representing businesses and other employers for more than 100 years.

EMA's submission to the Tauranga District Council is based on consultation with the association's Infrastructure Committee, EMA members located in Tauranga and senior EMA staff.


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