Kāpiti residents should receive their first rates instalment for 2016/17 either in the post or by email in the first week of August.
This instalment, and the next three notices you’ll receive for 2016/17, keep the rates increase at the level we consulted on during our FutureKāpiti - Long term plan process with the community – an average of 4.6 per cent across the district for 2016/17.
Your rates are based on the rateable value of your property and are used to help pay for the costs of services and facilities provided to the community. A property with a higher rateable value will pay more rates.
Some of your rates payment also goes to Greater Wellington Regional Council.
For more information, please check out our frequently asked questions and a rates feature in the 12 August 2015 issue of Kāpiti Update.
Rates help to pay for the costs of services and facilities provided to the Kāpiti community. For example:
Street lighting, waste water, storm water, solid waste, coastal management, roading, libraries, swimming pools, community halls, sports halls, cemeteries, public toilets, social housing, works depots, emergency operations centre, parks and open spaces, cycleways, walkways and bridleways, planning and development, dog registration, noise complaints and projects including the Paekakariki sea wall, Mahara Gallery and Waikanae library, Paraparaumu and Waikanae town centre and earthquake prone building assessments.
Rates pay for services and facilities that are either critical (i.e. wastewater management) or deemed beneficial to the community as a whole – often the things that make our district a more desirable place to live. We recognise not everyone will use every service or facility on offer, and where possible we look at other forms of revenue such as development contributions and ‘user pays’ – e.g. subsidised swimming pool entry fees.
In 2016/17 our property rates have increased by an average of 4.6% across the district to cover the cost of providing our services, facilities and new projects. This includes increases in costs due to inflation and other costs incurred as a result of government initiatives such as the new laws to assess earthquake-prone buildings.
Rates assessments for individual properties are driven by the land and capital value. Approximately 43% of rates are allocated on property value. This means higher valued properties will have higher rates.
While we have the fourth lowest total operating spending per ratepayer out of 67 councils, a high proportion of our costs is funded by rates.
We rely principally on rates to fund our services and maintain those services, and to cover the costs of inflation. Some of our costs – including the cost of infrastructure such as roads – are going up faster than household inflation.
In general these rates fund: public transport – trains and buses, river management and flood protection, possum and predator control, emergency management, environmental education and sustainability, land management, regional parks and forests.
We are aware some of our community has financial constraints. We have a rates remission policy for those whose rates exceed 5% of their household income. Applications can be made to Council from 1 October each year. Additionally, there is also a government rates rebate scheme for low income home owners.
Homeowners facing extreme hardship may get a reduction in their rates, or we can look at postponing payments. More information on rates remissions.
You can find out what your property valuation is or we can confirm the new valuation amount over the phone.