26 Feb 2015

Christchurch Council votes for rates rise

6:13 pm on 26 February 2015

The Christchurch City Council has today voted to proceed with a proposed rates increase of more than 26 percent in the next three years.

The extra money is needed to meet a $1.2 billion budget shortfall brought on by the cost of the city's rebuild.

The increase is still subject to public consultation in March.

If enacted, rates will rise 8.5 percent in each of the three years from July.

The deputy mayor, Vicki Buck, told councillors the rises were necessary because the council had reached the limit of what it was able to borrow and was receiving less money because of a fall in the number of ratepayers living in the city.

Meanwhile, an attempt by a group of Christchurch City Councillors to stop more council assets being sold has failed.

The plan, which passed today, will increase asset sales from the $550 million announced late last year, to $750m, as the council looks at ways to meet its shortfall.

Today Peoples Choice, the largest voting block around the council table, tried to block the move but lost by eight votes to six.

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