Quake-hit residents seek 100% rates relief

1:00 pm on 20 April 2012

Christchurch residents made homeless by the earthquakes have made an emotional plea to the council for 100% rates relief.

The group says their homes are uninhabitable and now face high rents and moving costs on top of rates.

The group says at least 3500 people have already qualified for a 40% rates remission on the grounds they can't live in their homes.

But a spokesperson, Nigel Salisbury, says his home has no sewerage, mains water or electricity and believes people in his position should receive a 100% rebate from rates.

Mr Salisbury says many homeowners have moved numerous times and now face the additional costs of renting.

Another member, Judit Tardi, also lost her business to the quakes and says she has since been on anti-anxiety medication to cope with the stress.

Ms Tardi says those affected do not want a handout, but it is not fair to expect them to pay rates on uninhabitable properties.

Councillor supports move

A city councillor, Peter Beck, says he supports a 100% rates rebate and it is an issue the council need to get right.

"I hope the council will look at options at how we can actually ensure we get that rates rebate ... there is an absolute unfairness about where we've got to on this one, so I'm hoping that we can do something about that before the end of June."

Another councillor, Yani Johanson, says what rates relief there will be in 2013 goes out for consultation on Friday as part of the draft annual plan.

However, he says any expanded relief before then is a separate issue and he will talk to mayor Bob Parker and staff about whether a report can be prepared for councillors to discuss.