Large rates increases for some Waipa ratepayers

2 August 2012 
Some Waipa ratepayers may have noticed large increases in their rates invoices for the first rates instalment of the 2012/13 year.
 
Chief Executive Garry Dyet said while the total increase in total rates revenue was an average of 4.3 percent, the increases affecting some individual properties was much higher in some cases and lower in others.
 
Those properties most affected by large increases are commercial/industrial, smaller rural and lifestyle blocks and those that are either not able to be connected to council’s water and wastewater schemes or are on metered water supply.  There is significant impact on lifestyle and rural residential properties throughout the district and on properties in Pirongia and Ohaupo townships.
 
This is because of two key drivers -  last year’s revaluation of properties across the district and changes to the council’s Revenue and Financing Policy. 
The revised values from the three-yearly district revaluation were used to assess rates for the 2012/13 year and were based on any change in capital value, relative to other properties.  This was strongly signalled in the council’s draft 10-Year Plan.
 
Furthermore, the changes to the Revenue and Financing Policy saw the funding of the district’s pools change to a more even split of user charges, district wide funding and targeted rate.  
There was also changes to the funding for district museums from 100 percent district wide funding to a mix of district wide funding, targeted ward rate and fees and charges.
 
This has meant a significant increase for properties in the Te Awamutu Ward for costs associated with the Te Awamutu Events Centre and Museum.
 
Most residential increases have been offset by a $109 reduction in targeted water rates and a decrease of $46 for their targeted wastewater rate.  Those properties that have metered water or are not connected to the water or  sewerage systems will not see the same relief on their rates invoice.   However, those with metered water will pay $109 less for their network charge through their quarterly water invoices. Those connected to the sewerage network will also see a $46 reduction in charges.
 
“While we included more indicator properties in our draft 10-Year Plan consultation documents than in previous years, we will be looking at ways to improve on this in the future,” said Mr Dyet.
 
“The council has made the decision to realign some of our costs to the communities of benefit and it is something that was not done lightly,” he said.
 
“The council’s focus remains on having a fair rating system. ”
 
Another change this year has been the removal of the five percent early payment discount for those who pay their total rates bill by the first instalment deadline.
 
“For the 2011/12 year ratepayers paid a net $309,000 to fund the discount, with approximately 25 percent of ratepayers receiving the discount,” said Mr Dyet.
 
“This meant the 75 percent of ratepayers who did not pay the full years rates by the first instalment subsidised the rest.  The council considered it fairer and more equitable to remove the discount,” he said.
 
Direct debit payment plans are available for those who would prefer to spread the cost over the year.  These include weekly, fortnightly or monthly options at no additional cost and are designed to fit in with ratepayers budgets.
 
The due date for the first instalment is 21 August.
 
Waipa District Council will continue to administer the Rates Rebate Scheme on behalf of the Department of Internal Affairs.  Further information will be available from the council offices mid-September and application forms will be mailed to all previous applicants.
 
Anyone who would like more information on their rates invoices should contact the council on 0800 924 723.
 
ENDS
 
For further information contact
Lisa Nairne
Senior Communications Advisor
Ph: 07 872 0062 or 027 532 1760
Email: lisa.nairne@waipadc.govt.nz
Page reviewed: 18 Apr 2017 1:07pm