Regional rate rises over the top

Porirua-Tawa Greater Wellington Regional Council candidate Roger Watkin says while the recently speculated rate increase for next year of 15% is likely to be well wide of the mark, it is true that there are serious political problems to be addressed.

“I believe Regional councillors have been down-playing the seriousness of the current and projected situation for the region.”

Mr Watkin says while the 15% is pure speculation, that number, or anything near it would be completely unacceptable.

“The fact is we are already getting hit by higher rates because of the Bus Network debacle and there is clearly a need to change those at the table.”

Mr Watkin says there has not been anywhere near enough practical regional spending in the last three years to justify the proposed increase and we have not been adequately represented.

“The public of Porirua-Tawa have been telling me they want more advocacy and more transparency and if elected I will bring both of those to the regional table.”

Mr Watkin says leaks can be notoriously unreliable, particularly when there is an absence of facts, and speculation can be dangerous.

“However, this current situation is a failure of the governance process and political transparency is crucial,” says Mr Watkin.

Mr Watkin says any talk of Independent Commissioners is just nonsense.

“The public have the opportunity to make the appropriate changes at the ballot box over the next two weeks, and I urge them to do so,” he says.