Lawrence Yule wants more of your money

There is a storm coming for local councillors, and for some, the clouds are only going to get darker, particularly as they start eyeing up next year’s local government elections.

Local Government New Zealand today released a discussion paper about how they can get hold of more of your money. This is all being spun on the basis that more funding is required to meet the increased demand for services and infrastructure.

Quick out of the blocks was the Taxpayers Union who pumped out a release LGNZ Push For Local Income Taxes, Fuel Taxes and Regional GST.

Jordan Williams slammed the head of Local Government Lawrence Yule saying

Mr Yule is telling the public that the goal isn’t to increase the overall tax burden, but today he released a report, not on ways to save money, but on ways to tax more.

And that’s the key point.

The Local Government Funding Review says that “the right incentives and resources must be in place to enable councils to drive growth”.  

A bit further on Yule says options include “a property tax…, local income tax, local expenditure tax, selective taxes, regional fuel taxes and transaction taxes’.

One thing is for sure, once ratepayers start hearing about how they could get tucked for more money, the discussions will be more around how to get rid of councillors who are behind this.

Rate-payers and business leaders will be thrilled to hear Yule saying “an appropriate funding mix includes greater use of tools already available to local government, such as the use of prices (user charges) where appropriate and a prudent use of debt for assets that have an inter-generational benefit.”

Williams is on the money saying;

New Zealand’s average rates bill has doubled in the last 20 years, tracking at twice the rate of inflation. Instead of focusing on the quality of councils’ spending decisions, this campaign is using ratepayer money on propaganda promoting new taxes.

LGNZ is a taxpayer funded lobby group representing the interests of councils. Nowhere in the discussion paper do we see a disciplined analysis of why local government spending is out of control.

This campaign is so blatant that LGNZ spin doctors are sending Mayors draft opinion pieces so local politicians can ‘leverage local media’ and promote these new taxes. The Taxpayers’ Union has been forwarded some of the emails by elected officials who are concerned LGNZ is overstepping the mark.

Overstepping the mark? You think?

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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.