C B Ruthe says the latest Taxpayers’ Union Report on local bodies reveals some stark facts.
( Note — KCDC frequently refers to previous reports from Taxpayers’ Union ).
The report states:
Rates in Kapiti average $2819.00. The national average for councils of comparable size are $2,400. 00. Roughly 20% higher. Cost of bureaucrats for ratepayers in Kapiti is$1,136. The average for comparable councils is $972.00.
Borrowings. Debt costs per household in Kapiti is $383.00 per year, the national average $183.00 p.a. 220 % higher. Liabilities per household in Kapiti is $10, 296.00, average for councils- $5384.00 – almost double. KCDC has the highest percentage of staff earning over $100,000 c.f. comparable councils.
Independent accountability. Most people want to know if what they are doing is right, and what their council is doing is right.
KCDC dislikes any independent professional on its committee auditing and checking on council’s actions. So, it has no accountant and no independent lawyer.
The report disapproves of KCDC- but ratepayers may think that keeping accountants and lawyers away from checking things saves ratepayers money.
- Rates: 20% higher
- Bureaucratic costs: 20% higher
- Borrowing costs 220% higher.
- Debt per household almost double.
Some people may worry about debt. However, with low interest rates the experts say- borrow.
A cynic might say lovers of high rates and low accountability will love the performance of KCDC.
But, as Oscar Wilde suggests “A cynic is a person who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing”.