Commitment to zero percent general rates increase for 2020/21 year
Taupō District Council is making a commitment to the community to reprioritise its annual plan so there is no more than a zero percent general rates increase for the 2020/21 year.
The decision comes in the wake of the far-reaching impact the national response to the COVID-19 virus is having on the Taupō District.
Mayor David Trewavas said the council understood completely that people were hurting at the moment, both businesses and individuals, and it was entirely appropriate the decision was made now to alleviate any further impact.
“We know as a district and a nation, these are unprecedented times, and we need to make changes while our communities establish their new normal,” he said.
“For us this starts now by creating a new annual plan with a view of ensuring that we avoid rates increases that was going to come as a result of new projects, increasing costs, and revaluation of properties.”
However, given the council’s revenue streams had also been drastically affected by a downturn in development, cancellation of events, and a drastic reduction in the amount of fees and charges it collects, a no more than zero percent general rates increase would be no easy task, and some tough decisions would need to be made.
“We will be looking at delaying any projects, like the council administration building, that are not time critical, reassessing our current levels of service and make some hard decisions to achieve this, but it is a goal we are 100 per cent committed to,” said Mr Trewavas.
“The balance of course will be continuing to invest money in our local economy to help provide jobs. We expect the community will come with us on the journey that lies ahead, as we will be need their support.”