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

 

Auckland Council must lead way in developing fairer system

12th August 2013

[statement by David Thornton]

Council rates are fair to no-one.

Auckland Council must lead way in developing fairer system.

The list of council rate increases payable by high-profile Aucklanders in today’s New Zealand Herald serves to demonstrate the inequality of the council’s rating system.

There are many individuals in that list who are reputedly wealthy enough for big rate increases to be of little concern. On the other hand half the people on the list actually enjoy a decrease in rates, including some ‘rich-listers’.

But there are many thousands of ordinary Auckland ratepayers for whom increases of more than the 2.9% average are a burden rapidly becoming unbearable.

In fact 74% of Auckland residential ratepayers face increases above the 2.9% ‘average’ claimed by Mayor Len Brown.

The 2.9% in fact refers to the percentage increase in total rates income the council aims to collect.

Rates are regarded as a tax and most taxes are directly related to income or consumption – Income Tax, GST, Excise duty, Road User charges etc.

Council rates are not directly related to either income or consumption.

They are based largely on estimated property values on a certain date, in the case of Auckland, July 1st 2011.

This suggests that the question of ‘value for money’ is not a consideration when rates are set.

Worse is yet to come for Auckland with a general property due revaluation next year.

This will lead to more changes in rateable values, leading to a wide range of higher and lower rates increases depending on where you live.

At a time of low inflation and modest salary increases the effect of council rates increases can be significant for many families.

I asked the Council earlier this year to institute its own inquiry into the current rating system with the aim of developing a fairer system.

With more than a third of the nation’s population the Auckland Council is in a prime position to take up this challenge to develop a system which is fair to most, and focuses on ability to pay and value for money.


ends


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Rabuka’s Possible Return In Fiji


Fiji signed onto China’s Belt and Road initiative in 2018, along with a separate agreement on economic co-operation and aid. Yet it took the recent security deal between China and the Solomon Islands to get the belated attention of the US and its helpmates in Canberra and Wellington, and the Pacific is now an arena of major power rivalries...
More>>



 
 

Budget: Climate Investments Provide Path To Economic Security
The Government is investing in New Zealand’s economic security by ensuring climate change funding moves away from short-term piecemeal responses and towards smart, long-term investment... More>>

ALSO:


Budget: Updated My Vaccine Pass For Those Who Want It

New Zealanders who are up-to-date with their COVID-19 vaccinations will be able to download an updated My Vaccine Pass from 24 May, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today... More>>

Speaker: 2022 Register Of Pecuniary And Other Specified Interests Presented
The 2022 Register of Pecuniary and Other Specified Interests of Members of Parliament was presented in the House today. It contains a summary of members’ interests as at 31 January 2022... More>>



Classification Office: Following Decision To Ban Manifesto The Buffalo Mass Shooting Livestream Is Now Banned
The livestream video of yesterday’s mass shooting in the United States has now been banned, Acting Chief Censor Rupert Ablett-Hampson announced this morning. The decision follows on from his decision yesterday to call in and ban the ‘manifesto... More>>

Borders: New Zealand Poised To Welcome International Students Back
New Zealand is fully reopening to international students and the Government is committed to help reinvigorate and strengthen the sector, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today... More>>


Inland Revenue: Commissioner Appointed
Deputy Public Service Commissioner Helene Quilter QSO has today announced the appointment of Peter Mersi to the position of Commissioner and Chief Executive, Inland Revenue Department... More>>


 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels