Penny Bright has to pay her rates, but won’t. Oh, and she wants to be mayor


A woman who owes Auckland Council tens of thousands of dollars in rates says she won’t be budged by a court order telling her to pay – and she’s just going to appeal again.

Kingsland resident Penny Bright has since 2007 conducted what she calls a “one person rates revolt” by not paying her council rates, claiming the local body isn’t transparent or held to proper account for its spending.

She was ordered in February to pay the more than $34,000 she owes, including penalties, by the District Court.

This week, a High Court turned down her appeal of that decision.

“Ms Bright, like other ratepayers, has an obligation to pay the rates that have been validly assessed as payable by her. Her refusal to do so simply increases the administration costs of the council,” Justice Geoffrey Venning said in his decision on Monday.

The council welcomed the decision but said taking court action was a last resort.

“We have consistently maintained that as a matter of fairness to all ratepayers, Ms Bright should pay her rates,” group chief financial officer Sue Tindal said.She said she would now be taking the case to the Court of Appeal. […]

“I’ll keep going because I’m not wrong. Persistence gets there in the end. It’s been nine years and I will not give up.” [, said Ms Bright]

It was last year reported the council had also spent $100,000 battling a defamation case brought against it by Ms Bright.

If it goes to the Court of Appeal, you can double that.

Her argument goes like this: Auckland Council aren’t doing their job right, so I don’t pay my rates until they do so to my satisfaction. In the meantime, I will be using council roads, lighting, sewage, libraries, parks and other facilities and drag this thing out for publicity purposes. The fact that I cost the ratepayers of Auckland more money than any single individual standing for a council position should not matter at all when you make me mayor, because then I’ll…make sure all of you will pay your rates.


– NZN via Yahoo! News

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