We need an end to private development agreements as they are subjective and subject to confidentiality clauses. It is impossible therefore to compare charges between ratepayers. The CBD is no different to any other part of the city and should not receive special treatment. The CBD needs to recover and this can only be achieved by bringing people back to the centre of town. The centre of town was busy in the 1960s when garden place was a car park and bus terminal. If it was to be restored as such and people could access the centre of town easily, developers would be encouraged to create new buildings, commercial spaces, hospitality and the like.
Council needs to change its language from rate increases and DC increases and find a better way to manage the financial impacts of growth. To simply think that rates and charges can be increased will ultimately see many people rated out of their homes. This will be particularly hard on the elderly.
If a DC is to be charged it should be a uniform calculation for all ratepayers and therefore remissions are not required.