Church fee not waived
A Cannons Creek church has failed to get ratepayers to pay fees for its building renovation.
The Church of Samoa on Castor Cres asked Porirua City Council to waive a $3418 fee for the impact its building work will have on council water, wastewater and stormwater systems.
The church is extending its hall by 255 metres and its carpark by 370 metres.
As a non-profit organisation the church is exempted from paying council rates, so its services are already met by Porirua ratepayers.
A $2904 recreation and civic development contribution has already been waived by the council, as it was decided the building extension did not generate increased demand on the council’s reserves network, and the council recognised the church’s contribution to the local community.
City councillors voted against waiving the development impact fee, agreeing ratepayers should not further subsidise the church.
The church’s request to the council was made by its building consultant, John Hanna, who argued the church was a nonprofit, community group and all church funds came from parishioner donations, so its fee should be waived.
A council report said an unwanted precedent would be set if the church was exempted from paying the fee.
The report suggests the church seek financial help through a council grant or by submitting for inclusion in its annual plan.