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Appeal To Party Leaders Over Rates Legislation

Appeal To Party Leaders Over Rates Legislation

David Thornton

The nationwide campaign to replace the present system of council rates with a fairer system which reflects ability to pay and value for money.

1/270 Lake Rd, Takapuna, AUCKLAND 0622 New Zealand.

12 June 2012

Email to Party Leaders in Parliament.

David Shearer, leader, Labour Party

Russel Norman, Metiria Turei, co-leaders Green Party

Rt Hon Winston Peters, leader NZ First Party

Hon Pita Sharples, Hon Tariana Turia, co-leaders Maori Party

Hon Peter Dunne, leader United Future Party

Hon John Banks, leader ACT Party

Hone Harawira, leader Mana Party

Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill

I write to ask that you give your Party’s support to this Bill which is set down for First Reading on today’s Order Paper.

The NoMore Rates campaign originated in the 2003 Ratepayers Rebellion against Auckland Regional Council rates policies, and became a nationwide campaign in 2005/6 in response to public outcry following the first 10-year budgets which revealed continuing rate increases from many councils.

NoMoreRates is often credited with being the driving force in concentrating attention on the council rating problem which led to the Independent Rates Inquiry which reported in late 2007.

In the following years NoMoreRates has attracted supporters from around the country, all wanting changes to the rating system and limits placed on councils’ ability to raise rates beyond acceptable levels.

This present Bill is a real opportunity for Parliament to seek public input on the Government proposal to introduce fiscal responsibility measures covering council debt, council expenditure and level of rates increases.

I can assure you that ratepayers throughout the whole country are demanding protection from the level of rates increases, and restrictions on councils taking on huge loans which eventually have to be repaid from rates.

I acknowledge that some of the measures in the Bill may not be acceptable to all Parties, but they can be debated in full at Select Committee stage.

But to get to that stage requires Parliament to pass the First Reading of the Bill.

On behalf of ratepayers around the country I ask you to pledge your Party’s support for the First reading of the Bill.


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