Protest rally – 12 noon on Sunday

For those outside Christchurch the significance of tomorrow (Sunday) may not be apparent.

Cantabrians Unite (website here) are organising a protest rally. The points at issue are:

  • A fresh mid term council election
  • Replace the council chief executive
  • Abolish council centralized structure and replace with a one city many communities model
  • Provide affordable land for housing and business
  • Affordable Rates

The protest may, or may not, receive widespread or competent coverage. The local Press newspaper (here) is of variable quality while the Auckland based NZ Herald (here) is more consistent. TV coverage may be available from TVNZ (here), TV3 (here), or local channel CTV (here).
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Bexley & East Side Red Zoners Rally

Bexley & East Side Red Zoners Rally
Sunday 9th October, 2pm at the Wairoa Reserve
Corner of Wairoa and Morganwood Streets

Bexley people are now having a rally to highlight Red Zone issues

The issues continue to be experienced in the following areas:

  1. Insurance Companies are not always honouring full replacement policies and are not been open and fair in line with their own Code of Ethics in the Fair Insurance Code
  2. Rateable Value is not an accurate valuation for at least 2000 red zone home owners and we want John Key and the govt to provide a review process as stated in the June Cabinet documents
  3. There is still not affordable land available to people. Bexley people have RV on land between $68-110000. These Mums and Dads cannot go and buy another section when similar sized section prices start at $240,000
  4. There needs to be more openness/transparency about why someone is zoned red, what is happening to the red zone after we go, how many sections are available on the market now
  5. We are wanting the Government to listen to these ordinary kiwis. Please do not shutdown on the lives of people who are finding it impossible to move on!!

Please support and highlight the desperate need of so many people.

Rally organisers: Rev Mike Coleman, Evan Smith, Brent Cairns
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CCC Draft Annual Plan – now available

The Draft Annual Plan is now available. The Council media release is here. There is a summary of the plan at the top of this page here. The full plan and associated documents are available at the bottom of the same page.

If you wish to make a written submission on the plan, or any part that is of interest, you have two weeks to do so.

Your feedback can be made on paper (e.g. as a letter) or on-line. If making a written submission it must physically reach the Council at the Art Gallery no later than 10.00am, Monday the 27th. For on-line feedback the form is here. The on-line form does not provide much room so if you have a lot to say, put it in writing.

CCC Draft Annual Plan – rates increases etc.

The CCC will release it’s Draft Annual Plan 2011-2012 on Saturday, following consideration by the Council on Thursday and Friday. This is not the plan for rebuilding the city, rather it is the plan for how the CCC intends spending money on more normal things.

There will be a two week opportunity for groups and individuals to make submissions on the content of the plan before it is finalised.

Highlights and small points of the plan include:

  • the CCC is facing deficits totalling approximately $100m for the current and following three years (all arising as a result of the earthquakes)
  • insurance premiums paid by CCC are expected to rise as much as 300% for the stuff below ground and 400% for some things above ground
  • some projects on the council’s books will need to be reconsidered, some deferred
  • a rates increase of 5.32% plus an earthquake premium of 2.21% (the latter to run for three years) is being recommended
  • removal of the central city shuttle
  • approximately 50% of CCC fees will increase, with a median increase of 3% (the bulk of the increases seem to be cost recovery only)

The CCC announcement is here and you can download the Council meeting agenda  from the same page. The plan will be available from the same link some time on Saturday.
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Rates and damaged properties.

The Council announced yesterday that it would give further consideration to rates relief for those with property damage. There will be something about this in the rates instalments being sent out this week. The announcement can be found here.

Background

Last year the CCC approved rates relief to assist those whose property was damaged by the earthquakes in September and December. The rates relief package was controversial, however any prospect of discussion on them came to a halt on February the 22nd. Here are a couple of posts relating to this: here and here (part 1 of 4).

 The package approved was specifically for last year’s earthquakes and so could not be applied to any damage resulting from the February 22nd earthquake.

22nd of February earthquake.

The Council will consider a rates relief package for properties damaged as a result of the February 22nd earthquake. This will be done in the next month, and ratepayers will be advised of the decision when it is made.

What the announcement says:

The latest instalment of Christchurch City Council rates is about to be sent to households around the city and ratepayers should pay as they usually would by the due date.

A rates relief package for properties damaged in the 22 February earthquake will be considered by the Council in the next month and ratepayers will be advised of the decision when it has been made. Any rates relief granted will be back-dated on rates already paid.

Council’s General Manager Corporate Services Paul Anderson says the rates relief package adopted last year for houses and other buildings damaged in the 4 September and 26 December 2010 earthquakes still applies to those properties. However, it does not cover properties damaged in the 22 February earthquake – this is what Council will consider shortly. Any rates relief granted under this new package will be back-dated.

“It is important that the Council continues to collect rates so that it can pay for city services, including earthquake response and repair measures. If it does not collect rates, the Council would have to borrow to pay for these services.”

Information will be included with the rates instalment being delivered city-wide this week and ratepayers will be advised to pay by the due date as they would normally do. Late penalties will apply to invoices not paid by the due date.

If you usually receive your mail at your home but you are not currently living there or clearing your mail please contact the Council on 941 8999 so that we can update your contact details.

If your house has or will be demolished, this will affect your rates in the 2011/12 financial year. The Council needs to know about the demolition and where possible will access Civil Defence and EQC records for this purpose. Ratepayers can also contact the Council on 941 8999 to confirm that a demolition has been recorded by the Council.

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