Russel Norman

Nats want to subsidise urban sprawl with your rates and taxes

by Russel Norman

It’s a bit strange that National say they want to look after the environment but at the same time want to subsidise urban sprawl. Two ways they want to subsidise urban sprawl is to cut development levies and build more new motorways.

Nick Smith’s speech to their conference complains about development contributions increasing the price of sections, and so presumably he wants to cut them.

Getting rid of development levies means that he wants existing ratepayers to subsidise the cost of new urban sprawl. Development contributions were put in the RMA and the Local Govt Act so that new subdivisions should be charged the full cost of new infrastructure they make necessary – eg water, sewage, roading, footpaths. Anything else is making people who have already paid for existing infrastructure in their rates, pay for growth as well.

Which is part of National’s plan for more urban sprawl – not only will they allow it by getting rid of metropolitan urban limits but they will tax us to pay for it. Say goodbye to all the green space in the Waitakere ranges in Auckland. Nats oppose protecting the ecological values on private land in the Waitakeres and on top of that they want the existing ratepayers to subsidise the developers as they make a killing out of developing the private land in the Waitakeres.

The second dimension to their subsidy of urban sprawl is the motorway building that National (and Labour) are obsessed with. More motorways are part of the urban sprawl project and Nats (and Labs) want to use our taxes to build em.

Published in Environment & Resource Management by Russel Norman on Mon, August 6th, 2007   

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