I like paying more rates, said no one ever.
But a rates rise is definitely on the cards for homeowners in Tauranga for 2020/21 while Rotorua is still under review as officials at both councils try to balance the books.
It would be fair to say Tauranga ratepayers may be in for the biggest shock as the city seems to have become a victim of its own success.
Tauranga has paid a high price for being the fastest-growing city in New Zealand and we are sliding into the red quicker than many people could have anticipated or apparently planned for.
We are struggling to keep up with infrastructure, including roads and amenities such as a museum, stadium, 50m swimming pool and kerbside rubbish are distant pipe dreams.
As reported on Saturday, city councillors have four options to stabilise the city's spiralling debt when deciding on how much to hike rates for 2020/21. The options include cutting projects, selling assets and slashing spending.
The issue is back on the council agenda today.
The best-case scenario for Tauranga ratepayers is a 5.1 per cent jump in rates - while the worst is nearly triple that - 17.6 per cent.
Granted in 2019/20 rates increased by about 3.9 per cent but this, in my view, was too low and it seems we will all now have to pay the price.
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I already allocate $137.50 a fortnight to cover rates and water in Tauranga and it is not going to be easy for people on fixed incomes or the elderly to find the extra cash.
Tauranga's mayor says the city has $4.6 billion in assets and he is not in favour of ''selling off the Crown jewels''. But the council might have to because who wants to live in a city that does not have the amenities that other metropolitan centres do?
Meanwhile, Rotorua Lakes Council had an overall average rates increase of 4.9 per cent in 2019/20 - less than the 5.1 per cent indicated in its long-term plan.
This had been attributed to additional operational efficiencies within the council organisation.
But it could not provide any indicative increases for 2020/21 at this time as the proposed 2020/21 Annual Plan was still being developed.
But in Tauranga, as a ratepayer, I am in favour of keeping the rates at 5.1 per cent. I also think some assets should be sold off to provide all those amenities we are sorely lacking.