Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 

Now Is The Time To Get Real On Rates


Now Is The Time To Get Real On Rates

If the Porirua Council is to get a grip on its budget it must act now, says a Porirua City Councillor.

Councillor Robert Shaw said rates increased 5.21% last year and rates hit record levels.

The Council "has never tackled the rates issue in a realistic way".

Council now takes almost $30 million from ratepayers each year, which is an all-time record.

Just 3 years ago, they took $24 million and the number of ratepayers was about the same as today.

Fees and charges are now also at record levels, over $7.5 million.

In addition, the Council for the first time in the history of the City plans for a deficit. They plan for an operating loss of $892,000.00.

Last year the council made an operating profit of $765,000. Ratepayers paid to much that year and will pay to little this year. Council needs to learn how to balance its budget.

The real rates rise last year was disguised by publicity that was focused on the rates rise for small selected groups.

Most of the increase was forced on Council because of its own imprudence, and an increase in staff costs that was sprung on councillors mid-year.

This year the Council is not doing any big projects but its income is at record levels.

Council has to learn to set a tough budget and stick to it. There are too many items funded simply because there is money available.

The surplus of funds makes it easy to run the council and to be everyone's friend, but it is grossly unfair on the ratepayers. The challenge for all councils it to gain focus and be prudent.

Now Council is being driven down a track as it develops its 10 year budget plan.

We need to immediately ask the ratepayers' if they want to continue with the high level of rates or if they want Council to plan for a reduction over the next 10 years.

An easy way to gain a balanced perspective on the level of rates would be to ask the residents' associations to express an opinion.

Recent publicity on the 10-year plan should be about the rates issue and things that are of concern in the suburbs. At the moment all we get are lists of projects for the city centre.

Councillor Shaw said he was pleased his recent motion on rates will be considered shortly. My colleagues need to come to a consensus on how the Council will handle the rates issue.

It is "vital we do this at the start of the budget process", he added.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Compelling Case For Meatless Meat

Talk about living in a bubble. As vegetarianism and veganism become normalised – there are more options on restaurant menus! - it can be easy to think that the whole world is gradually giving up on meat. Alas, the reverse is true. Americans for instance consumed 100 kilograms of meat and poultry in 2018, up from 75 kilograms in 1960, according to the US Department of Agriculture figures... More>>


 
 

Government: Hundreds Of New Electric Cars For State Sector

Total of 422 new electric vehicles and charging infrastructure across the state sector $5.1 million for the Department of Conservation to buy 148 electric vehicles and install charging infrastructure $1.1 million to help Kāinga Ora buy 40 electric ... More>>

Pay Policy: CTU Public Service Unions Meet With Public Service Minister

The Council of Trade Unions and affiliated public service unions, met with the Minister for the Public Service Hon Chris Hipkins this afternoon to discuss the pay expectations of those working in our public services. CTU President Richard Wagstaff said it was ... More>>

Government: Further Action Against Gang Crime

The Government will make it illegal for high risk people to own firearms by introducing Firearms Prohibition Orders (FPOs) that will strengthen action already taken to combat the influence of gangs and organised crime to help keep New Zealanders and their ... More>>

ALSO:


Child Poverty: Reports Highlight Need For Ongoing Action

The Government has released the first Annual Report for the Child and Youth Wellbeing Strategy and the second Child Poverty Related Indicators (CPRI) Report, both of which highlight improvements in the lives of children as a result of actions of the Government, ... More>>

ALSO:

PM: Statement On The Speaker And Annual Review Debate

“The serious issue of alleged sexual assault and harassment at Parliament was poorly managed and inappropriately politicised last night. The tone of the debate did not reflect well on Parliament as a whole,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. ... More>>

Parliament: Mallard Fails To Give Taxpayers A Straight Answer

Trevor Mallard has confirmed he is unfit to be Parliament’s Speaker by failing to answer several important questions relating to the false rape accusation saga that cost taxpayers more than $330,000, Shadow Leader of the House Chris Bishop says. ... More>>

Local Government: Independent Review To Explore Future

Local Government Minister Nanaia Mahuta says an independent review of local government will explore how councils can maintain and improve the wellbeing of New Zealanders in the communities they serve long into the future. More>>

ALSO:


 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels