The penny drops

Yesterday I blogged about the sneaky and furtive way that Len Brown is trying to appear to reduce rates. Today the penny dropped.

One reason why he is deferring the 1% rates rise by a year is because next year will be the introduction of a new rating system where capital value is theonly measure of rating across the city. It will massively change some peoples rates, particularly rural areas.

By sneaking in the extra 1% rates rise next year rather than this year, Brown has the benefit of

a) having the extra spend covered up by the holy hell that is going to be raised by rural/provincial Auckland over capital value being introduced and impacting them more
b) potentially have the rural areas pick up more of the share of spending through the introduction of capital value (urban areas might get a rates reduction, albeit a very small one)

This os great forward thinking by Brown. He gets to have great press now about reducing the rates burden with his sneaky shunting of 1% off to the never never and then hide the rates increase in the changeover to capital value. All the while knowing full well that his core constituency in South Auckland will be largely unaffected by this and who out number the rural rump of the new city.

Sneaky, yes. Furtive, yes. Good politics…I reserve my judgment.