Hamilton City Council’s Never-Ending Rate Hikes Are Unjustifiable
Responding to Hamilton City Council's proposed increase of 25.5% for the 2024/25 financial year, and subsequent 14.1% rate hikes for the following four years, Taxpayers’ Union Head of Campaigns, Callum Purves, said:
“While Hamilton City Council might be trying hard to sell the idea that there is no other choice when it comes to funding its water infrastructure, it’s evident that the financial crisis it now finds itself in has been driven by years of wasteful spending.
“Just last year, our 2023 Ratepayers Report revealed the Council had spent over $315m on contractors and consultants – more than three times that of Auckland Council – and pays nearly a quarter of its staff salaries over $100,000. It’s that there is still plenty of fat the Council could trim to allow investment in vital infrastructure while protecting ratepayers from eye-watering rate hikes.
“Double-digit rate hikes have become a worrying trend across New Zealand’s local councils and now you’d be hard-pressed to find any council with a rate increase below the level of inflation. It’s high time our local authorities start cutting back on the nice-to-haves and stop expecting ratepayers to keep bailing them out."