Thursday, June 30, 2011 at 12:38PM
Bill Barclay

A paper was presented yesterday that proposed to introduce differential charges for various rural communities. This has mainly been promoted as a result of some very persuasive arguments being put forward by the amazingly erudite community of Te Kouma. They have just refused to accept the arguments that their stormwater assets are equivalent to an 'urban' situation.

There are many others in the same situation as indicated in the list below. Their arguments are pretty thin, but nevertheless with the advice of one or two hearing commissioners who reside in these communities, and I suspect a coterie of retired lawyers, bush or otherwise, they present a strong and united front when approaching Council.

Here is the content of the recommendation:

Recommended Option - Introduction of a differential on the following basis:

Under this option Council would add Colville, Kennedy Bay and Opoutere to the existing stormwater catchments and also agree to introduce a 0.75 differential to apply to the
following communities:

Colvill, Hikutaia, Kennedy Bay, Kuaotunu West, Matatoki, Opito, Opoutere, Puriri, Rings, Te Kouma

Wharekaho (Simpsons Beach) and Whakatete Bay catchments would no longer be charged.

There was considerable discomfort expressed at what some councillors believed to be arbitrary percentages, and along with many others, deferment was the order of the day. It is to be left until another day when all services are to be reviewed.

These guys are certainly leaving a great deal to be decided over a short period of time later this year, and although their stated need is to achieve consistency, this may prove illusive.




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