Auckland Council’s annual budget has been approved setting a rates increase, and new targeted rates, in motion.
At its meeting on June 29, Council set the rates for the financial year resulting in a 3.5 percent rates increase, the introduction of the Climate Action Targeted rate and updates to the waste management targeted rates.
Albany Ward Cr John Watson said that in some parts of Auckland there would be four targeted rates.
“There is a cumulative effect taking place there,” Cr Watson said. “In terms of the community, there is increasing difficulty meeting costs that are compounded by the cost-of-living increase.”
Cr Christine Fletcher said the cost-of-living crisis was one that Council is grappling with.
“Generally, the outlook is very pessimistic,” she said.
Mayor Phil Goff said that when Covid-19 ripped $900 million out of Council’s budget, they had to look at all the tools available.
“Are our rates excessive? Well, ask the people of Tauranga – they are paying 13.7 percent in the coming year. Wellington is paying 8.9 percent,” he said.
The Mayor said that Council has taken into account that people are under pressure.
“However, we do not want to be like New York. They went into disaster because council after council, Mayor after Mayor refused to increase the revenue and the city went bust.”
Ratepayers will receive the first rates instalment invoices from August 1.