Press Release – Christchurch City Council
The Christchurch City Council decided today to review its rates remission policy before the next rates instalment falls due on 15 November. Rates relief possible for owners of earthquake damaged homes
The Christchurch City Council decided today to review its rates remission policy before the next rates instalment falls due on 15 November.
The 4 September earthquake and aftershocks have caused expensive property damage to land and buildings in Christchurch resulting in financial hardship for a number of Christchurch residents and business owners.
While the extent of property damage is still unclear, the Council decided that given the extraordinary nature of the recent events, it will consider offering rates relief to owners of badly affected properties.
Mayor Bob Parker says “This will take into account the occupants of houses and businesses which may never be occupied again. Whether the owner or occupiers are not using services could determine whether they will quality for rates remission.
“We want to give ratepayers a clear signal that there will be rates relief for residents in extraordinary circumstances.”
Rates are assessed in June each year, based on a property’s value. There is no provision in the Local Government Act to allow rates to be adjusted after 30 June.
“Irrespective of rating legislation and historic practice, given the extraordinary nature of the recent earthquake it is appropriate for Council to consider offering rates relief,” says Mr Parker.
“However because the exact number of buildings and the nature of damage is still being assessed, we will delay our review until some time before 15 November when the next rates instalment is due. By then, we should have a clearer picture.”