The Watchdog

Keeping citizens in the loop

Did YOU know that ALL residents and ratepayers in the Auckland $upercity are facing a proposed 4.9% rate increase?

Auckland ($upercity) Council proposed 4.9% rate$ increase.
How many people living in the Auckland region are aware of the following:

a) The Auckland ($upercity) Council is proposing a 4.9% rates increase?

http://www.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/EN/AboutCouncil/PlansPoliciesPublications/annual_plan/Pages/home2.aspx 

b) This Auckland ($upercity) Council proposed 4.9% rates increase covers ALL ratepayers (residential and commercial)?

c) The savings needed by the Auckland Council to prevent this 4.9% proposed rates increase is $62 million?

www.nbr.co.nz/article/auckland-council-plans-49-rate-increase-nk-87132

d) $62 million is exactly the amount spent by the former Auckland City Council, just on  on consultants in 2008?

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10512497

e) ‘Submissions’ for the Draft Auckland Council Annual Plan, closed on 1 April 2011?

f) Only 1800 submissions on the ‘Draft Auckland Council Annual Plan’ were received by the Auckland Council?

g) I have intitiated a ‘postcard’ campaign, addressed to:                (No stamp required)

Prime Minister of New Zealand,
John Key
PO Box 18888,
Wellington 6160

“The will of the people shall be the basis of the authority of Government:..”
[Article 21 (3) Universal Declaration of Human Rights 1948]

This new Auckland (Supercity) Council is proposing a 4.9% rates increase!

(While reducing most former Council’s prompt rates payment discounts.)

Where are the  ‘economies of scale’ resulting from forcibly abolishing our eight former councils and replacing them with this ‘corporate controlled organisation’?

National promised to ‘consult with Aucklanders once the findings of the Royal Commission were known’:

http://www.national.org.nz/files/2008/local_government_policy.pdf

You didn’t.  Citizens were denied our lawful right to a ‘binding poll’ and now Auckland is being run
‘like a BIG business, by BIG business, for BIG business’.

Bigger contract$ for fewer but bigger contractors?  Serving whose interests?

The ‘books’ are NOT open.  We don’t know the name of the consultants/contractors; the scope, term and value of these contracts.

WHO IS IN CHARGE?  Where is the ‘due diligence’, ‘cost-benefit analysis’ and ‘transparency’?

CUT rates by cutting out contractors and bring core Council services back “in-house”!

I pledge to consider not paying this proposed Auckland Council 4.9% rate increase.

NAME:____________________________________________________________

ADDRESS:________________________________________________________

_________________________________________________________________

SIGNED:_____________________________________ DATE:_______________

(Please advise the Auckland Council forthwith – submissions closed on 1 April 2011)

________________________________________________________________________________________________

Having widely distributed these above-mentioned ‘postcards’ to retailers in the Remuera, Newmarket and Parnell shopping centres, I am shocked at how few people are aware of this pending rates increase.

Most people have been VERY appreciative of this effort made to help inform them, and the opportunity they now have to do something about it.

(For those who want to quickly blame Mayor Len Brown and the ‘left-leaning’ Auckland Council, may care to check the voting record of Citizens and Ratepayers and ‘Independent’ Councillors on this proposed rates increase issue?)

Penny Bright
https://waterpressure.wordpress.com

____________________________________________________________________________________

BACKGROUND INFORMATION:

Auckland Council 4.9% Draft Annual Plan proposal.

http://www.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/EN/AboutCouncil/PlansPoliciesPublications/annual_plan/Pages/home2.aspx 

‘Transition Rate

Amalgamates the different rates you previously paid in 2010/2011

including the Auckland Regional Council rate but excluding those for water supply and wastewater.

Proposed increase from 2010/2011                4.9%

Wastewater rate

Applies to properties that had wastewater or sewerage rate for 2010/2011 and are connected to Watercare Services Limited network.

Proposed increase from 2010/2011               4.5%

Penalties for late payments of rates are proposed to be 10%.

A discount of 1.5% will be offered for the full payment of rates by the first installment date.

_____________________________________________________________________________________

www.nbr.co.nz/article/auckland-council-plans-49-rate-increase-nk-87132

NBR 1 March 2011 article

Auckland Council plans 4.9% rate increase

The new Auckland Council is planning a 4.9% overall rate increase to fund $2.5 billion of spending in the year starting July 1 this year.

According to the council’s draft annual plan it is proposing to spend $1.8 billion on providing services for the region and $773 million on capital projects.

To pay for these capital projects Auckland Council will borrow an additional $346 million in 2011/2012.

Mayor Len Brown said that without any intervention, the starting point for the overall rate increase would have been 9.4%.

“This was clearly not acceptable and we have set a maximum of 4.9% with an expectation that efficiency savings will be found.”

The council needs to save $62 million to get to this target.

____________________________________________________________________________________

$62 million is exactly the amount spent by the former Auckland City Council just on  on consultants in 2008

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10512497

By Bernard Orsman

5:00 AM Monday May 26, 2008

Auckland City chief executive David Rankin and senior managers have bent the rules to hand out millions of dollars in consultancy work to former staff, official papers show.

Mr Rankin, first as finance director and then chief executive, has overseen payment of $8.7 million over the past four years in consultancy fees to 29 former staff and companies linked to former staff.

The news follows revelations last week that council spending on consultants is budgeted to soar to $62.2 million this year, up 9.6 per cent on the $56.7 million budgeted.

______________________________________________________________________________


http://www.kiwisfirst.co.nz/news.asp?pageID=2145848073&RefID=2141732572

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May 6, 2011 - Posted by | Fighting corruption in NZ, Howick by-election campaign, Stop the $uper City

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