Auckland Council says it has exhausted all attempts to secure rates payment from Penny Bright and moves to recover the outstanding amount through the courts are a last resort.

This follows a seven and a half year process.

"Ms Bright has made wild and inaccurate accusations about the council and its probity and is using this as the basis for not paying her fair share to the ongoing running of Auckland. These assertions are completely unfounded and her actions are at the expense of all Aucklanders," says council chief executive Stephen Town.

"I personally tried to contact Ms Bright yesterday in a last ditch effort to secure a resolution to this situation. Instead, she has resorted to further legal action which is both disappointing and frustrating.


"The council goes out of its way to assist many Aucklanders to meet their rates obligations. Last year, 20,051 Auckland ratepayers qualified for a rates rebate and we also agreed to 337 rates payments being postponed. Ms Bright has not taken up any of our offers to work with her on a suitable repayment plan.

"It's the council's responsibility to ensure fairness and equity for all Aucklanders and rates are the lifeblood of the effective running of the city. While I respect Ms Bright's right to a point of view, her extreme perspective should not be at the expense of everyone else," says Mr Town.

Ms Bright wants the council to disclose how much is paid to private contractors and is refusing to pay until they do so.

She said she was not aware of the hearing and therefore was not in court for the judgment against her.

She has filed papers against the house sale, saying the council is able to bank the debt against the value of her home with some houses in the area selling for over $800,000 this year.

Similar court action is being initiated for a total of eight cases of long-standing unpaid rates and Ms Bright was second on the list of historical long-standing debts.

There are currently approximately 179 ratepayers who are being reviewed with a total of approximately $2.5 million outstanding rates.