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Fairer and simpler rating system proposed

Fairer and simpler rating system proposed

A fairer and simpler rating system for Hamilton are behind Council’s decision to consult on a new Capital Value (CV) rating system.

Councillors this week (18 August) gave the go-ahead to consulting around changing from the current land based rating system to capital value which is one which includes both the land and buildings value on a property.

The proposal, to be introduced over 5 years from 1 July 2012, also includes a change to the way water and rubbish are charged, with property owners paying a variable amount for these based on the capital value of their property.

The current rating system which has seven different rating ratios would be simplified with residential and commercial properties will be rated the same. The existing rural differential rate has been retained and a new CBD commercial differential rate is proposed. This recognises the need to support and build the central business district through a lower rate, and acknowledges that rural ratepayers use less Council services.

The proposed move to CV would see Hamilton joining the majority of councils around the country who have this rating system, including neighbouring Waikato District, Waipa and Waikato Regional councils. It is also the preferred rating system of central Government.

Overall the amount of rates collected would stay the same under CV, but the rating “pie” as a whole would be divided up differently between the residential and commercial sectors.

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Council has already had pre-consultation conversations with 19 key stakeholder groups around their views of CV, with a strong majority of them supporting a change, and that it be introduced over 5 years.

Wide ranging communication will take place over the month of September to ensure residents fully understand what is proposed, and to encourage people to make their views known during month of formal consultation.

Mayor Julie Hardaker says: “A rating system which takes account of the complete value of a property is at the end of the day fairer and more equitable for our city as a whole.

“Yes there will be winners and losers under this proposal, just as there are with the current rating system, but our proposal to introduce this over five years will give property owners time to adjust. My strong view is that this is a fairer, simpler and more transparent rating system for our city and one which will put us in a much better position for the future.

“We’ll be sharing what’s proposed shortly and I would encourage people to take the time to learn about it, and then let us know their views.”

Submissions can be made from 1-30 September, Public hearings take place in late October/early November and Council will make a decision on 23 November.


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