Reporting back

How your rates are spent

Date: 01 July 2019
Reporting Frequency: Annually
Category: Regional and Strategic Leadership


Annual rating trend information available by activity type.



About this goal

This shows the annual trend in how Environment Canterbury spends the money it collects in rates from property owners across Canterbury.

The categories shown here were defined by Stats NZ and relate to the broad type of work councils do. For a regional council, such as Environment Canterbury, our biggest area of work is environmental protection which includes aspects of most of our portfolios: freshwater; biodiversity and biosecurity; air quality; hazards, risk and resilience; and regional leadership. Transport is also a significant area which includes the provision of public transport in Christchurch and other areas around Canterbury.

Why does it matter?

All property owners in Canterbury pay rates, either general (based on capital value), targeted (for a specific benefit to a property owner), or as a uniform annual general charge (a standard amount for all property owners).

We use rates to pay for the work agreed with the community to achieve our priorities and work programmes, as well as to provide community resources. Rates are not the only source of income for Environment Canterbury. We also receive grants from other agencies, for example, the significant income from NZTA for the public transport system, and user-payers when a specific fee for a service is charged such as bus fares.

What's being done?

How we spend rates is crucial information for Environment Canterbury staff and councillors, property owners who pay the rates, and the wider community which benefits from the services we provide and work programmes we manage. It helps to measure the effectiveness of our work, and provides information on how we should prioritise our spending for future years as part of the triennial long-term plan process.

In the chart below total rates collected went from $68.6m in 2009 to $97.6m in 2018 (an increase of $29.0m or 42%). Over the same period the general CPI increased by 15.1% and the CPI for housing by 76.2%.


Find out more

To see a two-year comparison of Environment Canterbury’s rating spend, or information on other councils across New Zealand view the Stats NZ tool – Where do your rates go?

Find out more about the latest financial year’s information by programme and project with our Rates Tool.


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