Whangarei residents can expect to see their rates bill climb by an average of $60 for the next year.
The rates for the financial year from July 1, 2017, until June 30, 2018, were adopted, alongside the 2017/2018 Annual Plan at a council meeting yesterday.
In Whangarei District, which has 83,7000 residents, the average rates bill is $1528. A 3.9 per cent rise of $59.59 will take the new average rates bill to $1587.
Council finance committee chairwoman Shelley Deeming said the rates are in line with the commitment made in the Long Term Plan.
"The agreed increase for general rates each year between 2017-2025 was to be two per cent plus the percentage that the Local Government Cost Index had risen by in the year, which is 1.9 per cent this time. Added together, that makes the total increase in the General Rate 3.9 per cent this year."
The Uniform Annual General Charge increased by 4.38 per cent from $422 to $440.50.
Councillor Stuart Bell filed a failed motion to have the UAGC amended to reflect what is stated in the Long Term Plan.
He said the 4.38 per cent was not in line with the calculation of inflation plus two per cent.
"It does not fit with what we are telling our public."
Mr Bell said there was a 2.5 per cent difference between industrial and rural rates increases. The rural was "well below" the 3.9 per cent at 2.26, and industrial is at 4.6.
"We told the public 'your rates are going to increase by LGCI plus two per cent, not work backwards'."
Chief financial officer and corporate general manager Alan Adcock said the council's general rates are set at the overall level to provide sufficient funding for planned expenditure each year.
"Because of day-to-day movements in the makeup of the district properties e.g subdivisions, zone changes. The rates movement for an individual property will nearly always be different to the overall movement."
He said they have also committed to keeping the share of the overall rates each sector pays the same from year to year, which also leads to variations at the individual household level because of movements within each sector.
"This debate has highlighted the complexity of rating, and is something I am sure Council will be considering in its current rating review."
To find out what your rates will be for the coming year, go to http://www.wdc.govt.nz/RatesandPayments/Rates/Pages/RatesDatabaseSearch.aspx and search for your address.
■ NRC rates rise and Annual Plan adopted, page 4