Residents in Christchurch face a rates increase of between 3.5 and 5.5 per cent next year to plug a $90 million hole in the city council’s purse left largely by the coronavirus pandemic.
Hopes for a much-vaunted lowering of the increase to zero have been dashed, with staff warning the policy would cause “unprecedented” redundancies, jeopardise projects and flout direct advice from the Government.
The authority also faces borrowing more than $100m over the next two years to pay for its coronavirus response and make up for an expected $61.8m in lost dividends from the trading companies it owns.
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