Pan charges should be fairly distributed
We write this letter to express our concern at the sudden move by the Matamata-piako District Council to introduce pan tax (charges) as detailed in last week’s edition of the Matamata Chronicle.
It is not the pan tax that we take issue with, as we acknowledge that while it has it faults pan charges are a relatively common way of charging for wastewater.
Rather it is the proposed level of this tax and the inequitable manner in which it is being implemented that is of cause for concern.
Currently we pay approximately $600 in wastewater rates annually.
Under the council’s proposed pan charges our annual wastewater charges will rise to just on $11,000.
The rise is astronomical and appears to be considerably higher than many councils.
We spoke to three neighbouring councils (Waipa, Hauraki and South Waikato) who informed us that had our premises been located within their jurisdictions our total annual pan charges would be between $4000 and $5000 per annum.
We have 22 toilets on our property but what the council has failed to recognise is that 100 per cent occupancy is not the norm and often when occupied our toilets are only being used by one person.
Compare this to say a five or six toilet premises with people queuing to use them while the total daily flushed (wastewater) may be similar, their pan charges would be around a quarter of what we are charged. This hardly seems fair.
We appreciate that for the good of the district and to keep up with the modern times the council must maintain and improve our amenities.
We also appreciate that this comes at a cost, a cost that must be shared by ratepayers.
All we are asking is that before the introduction of the pan charges that the council proposes a pan charge that is fair and justifiable. who would have hundreds use their toilets each week.
Accommodation statistics in the Waikato show an average of 50 per cent occupancy over the last year (numbers provided by a government department). Sports clubs are often seasonal and only have users on set days and they are going to pay full whack. The two theatres have two productions a year and they will have to pay for full use over the whole year. What does this mean? Clubs either putting their membership fees up to a point where the members cannot afford to belong any more or they go broke.
The theatres putting their prices up to a point where people will not go and they will be forced to close their doors.
Businesses putting their prices up to try and recoup the cost along with all the other price increases.
Submit your submission so that the council is forced to rethink this and make it fairer to all.