Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

Councils accountable to their communities

MEDIA RELEASE

 

Councils accountable to their communities, not Dr Bollard

For immediate release on 11 December 2008

“Councils are well aware of the need to be fiscally prudent and they are fully accountable to their communities for their spending decisions”, President of Local Government New Zealand  Lawrence Yule said today, after comments by Dr Bollard, Governor of the Reserve Bank.

“Councillors agree to rates increases only after thorough consideration of what is needed to maintain the quality of life of their communities. Even if they do raise rates, it only has a small national impact on the CPI.

“The economy has changed significantly since this year’s rates were set. Councils are now preparing for their next Long Term Council Community

Plan and are looking at their budgets carefully in order to manage expenditure.”

While some councils will be able to achieve rates increases to no more than the rate of CPI inflation, others will not be able to for two reasons.

“Firstly, all communities require investment in infrastructure to ensure essential services continue to operate, today and in the future.  Many are

facing expensive renewals as their infrastructure is reaching the end of its useful life and others are dealing with increased demand caused by population growth. Councils use rates to pay for new and enhanced infrastructure, as well as to pay for the interest on loans raised for this purpose.

“Secondly, the cost drivers for local government expenditure are typically higher than the consumer rate of inflation. Roading and construction

costs have tended to increase more than the CPI measured rate of inflation. Rates cover both present and future funding needs, and in some cases are also catching up on past under-investment. 

“For these reasons it is neither practical, nor beneficial to communities, to manage rates within nationally-imposed constraints which cannot capture or respond to the range of councils' needs and resources.  These decisions must be left up to local councils to decide after proper consultation with their citizens.


“Councils are not like a private sector monopoly.  Councillors are elected by citizens to represent their interests on behalf of the community

as a whole and we exercise this responsibility seriously.  Ultimately the consequences of councillors failing to take note of their community’s

views will be felt at the elections.  This is what democracy is about and it works well.

“If people are concerned about their council’s level of rates, now is the time to get involved. Councils are considering their spending decisions as

they draft their 2009 – 2019 Long Term Council Community Plans (LTCCPs) and will be consulting on these early next year. 

“Unlike private sector companies, councils are significantly influenced by the needs and priorities set by their local communities and remain first and foremost accountable to them,” said Mr Yule.

ENDS

 
 

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Life And Times Of Peter Dunne

In the end, Mr Pragmatic calmly read the signs of impending defeat and went out on his own terms. You could use any number of clichés to describe Peter Dunne’s exit from Parliament.

The unkind might talk of sinking ships, others could be more reminded of a loaded revolver left on the desk by his Cabinet colleagues as they closed the door behind them, now that the polls in Ohariu had confirmed he was no longer of much use to National. More>>

 

Gordon Campbell: On Labour’s Campaign Launch

One of the key motifs of Ardern’s speech was her repeated use of the phrase – “Now, what?” Cleverly, that looks like being Labour’s response to National’s ‘steady as it goes’ warning against not putting the economic ‘gains’ at risk. More>>

ALSO:

Lyndon Hood: Social Welfare, Explained

Speaking as someone who has seen better times and nowadays mostly operates by being really annoying and humiliating to deal with, I have some fellow feeling with the current system, so I’ll take this chance to set a few things straight.. More>>

ALSO:

Deregistered: Independent Board Decision On Family First

The Board considers that Family First has a purpose to promote its own particular views about marriage and the traditional family that cannot be determined to be for the public benefit in a way previously accepted as charitable... More>>

ALSO:

Transport Policies: Nats' New $10.5bn Roads Of National Significance

National is committing to the next generation of Roads of National Significance, National Party Transport Spokesperson Simon Bridges says. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Why Labour Isn’t Responsible For Barnaby Joyce

As a desperate Turnbull government tries to treat the Barnaby Joyce affair as a Pauline Hanson fever dream – blame it on the foreigners! We’re the victims of the dastardly New Zealand Labour Party! – our own government has chosen to further that narrative, and make itself an accomplice. More>>

ALSO:

Rail: Greens Back Tauranga – Hamilton – Auckland Service

The Green Party today announced that it will trial a passenger rail service between Auckland, Hamilton and Tauranga starting in 2019, when it is in government. More>>

ALSO:

Housing: Voluntary Rental Warrant Of Fitness For Wellington

Wellington City Council is partnering with the University of Otago, Wellington, to launch a voluntary Rental Warrant of Fitness for minimum housing standards in Wellington, Mayor Justin Lester has announced. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election