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NZ First To Push For Action On Rates Report With New Govt

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wellington, Aug 15 NZPA - New Zealand First thinks the Government has not done enough to implement recommendations of a report into local body rates and it will insist on progress from whichever party rules following this year's election.

The government-commissioned Funding Local Government report released a year ago said rates had increased by 38 percent in the past 12 years and were forecast to increase 8 percent yearly.

The report, written by a panel headed by David Shand, said councils had to rein in spending, make better decisions and be more careful with their planning.

It made 96 recommendations designed to help councils bring spending under control and also said the Government should pay rates on the land it owns, except for conservation land.

At the time the Government said it would consider the recommendations.

In a speech to the Bay of Plenty Mayors Forum in Rotorua today, NZ First leader Winston Peters said the Shand report was a valuable document that looked at everything from drivers of spending to alternative sources of funding.

While NZ First did not agree with all the recommendations: "NZ First has been most displeased with the Government's inaction on the recommendations which were put forward".

"This is a quality piece of work and NZ First intends to ensure that post-2008 government takes heed of the many valuable recommendations it contains."

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