A reader email about rates and declining services


A reader emails about his rates and the loss of services which have now been transferred to ratepayers with no corresponding drop in rates.

Hi Whaleoil & co,

Not really a tip, and defiantly not a major issue, but something that has really annoyed me for several reasons.

I was wondering why the roadside verges in my area were looking like they needed a cut.  So after 30 minutes of googling and searching the Auckland Council website I could find no mention if the council had stopped the mowing of roadside verges in the old Auckland City Council area.  After a phone call to Auckland Council and speaking to a charming lady who read out a prepared statement, it had turned out that this is the case and saved $3 million per year or releasing fund to pay for 3-5 days’ worth of interest on council debt.  The charming call centre lady could not answer why there was no announcement of this or further information available on the council website to inform Joe Public.  I would appreciate it if you could highlight this on your blog so affected home owners could start tiding up their parts of the street.

Now what really annoys me is that council rates keep going up, and core services keep declining, this was one of the few benefits I had valued and had received from Auckland Council.  The second is the lack of communication and the fact that this has be slipped in under the radar, something I plan to take under consideration in the elections this year.

Finally I have to take responsibility for land which is not mine, which I cannot modify in-order to keep maintenance costs down, and which the costs in time and money have now shifted to me.  I wouldn’t mind this if rates had actually deceased in real terms.

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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story.  And when he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet.   Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet, and as a result he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist that takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him.  But you can’t ignore him.