Auckland would consider a 5.9% rates increase a gift from heaven

The Kāpiti Coast District Council (KCDC) began hearing submissions on its draft annual plan today.

The document sets out the council’s expenses, projects and priorities for the next year.

Nearly a quarter of the 131 submissions were from superannuitants who were worried about the rates increase.

The council said the increase was needed to meet depreciation of infrastructure, costs arising from inflation, flood protection works and economic development projects including upgrades to the town centre.

John Hayes represents the local Older Persons Council, which wanted some of the projects deferred until the council had made a compelling case for it.

“I think it’s really important that Planet KCDC does not float away into the atmosphere, the stratosphere, and leave the rest of us behind,” he said.

“The feeling we get is that there’s another set of economic rules that apply to KCDC and many people are feeling abandoned.”

Grey Power Kāpiti spokesperson Trevor Daniell said nearly half of the local population was on a fixed income, and just over a quarter were superannuitants.

He said Grey Power was disappointed at the council’s inability to manage its money.

“As usual, Grey Power is focusing on affordability,” he said. “I know the council keeps on looking up and saying ‘oh but it’s only a one or two dollar increase’ but that’s been going on for years and years and years, so it’s gradually affecting the standard of living of the older people and those on benefits.”

Grey Power, like the Older Persons Council, said more proof was needed to justify the spending when, at 5.9 percent, some services would still have to be cut.

Just goes to show that problems are of a different magnitude outside of Auckland.

Be that as it may, many older people are being pushed hard on their freehold homes with local councils stacking rates increased on them every year while their incomes remain static.

It’s not nice, but at some point some of them will be put in a position where they can no longer afford to stay in the home they may have occupied for decades.

But these are not real problems.  Having to move to a smaller home with affordable rates is a privileged problem that people with wealth but too little cash have.



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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. 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 who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

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