METRONEWS
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Rates remission change will cost some charities  

Jessica Swan
oak development trust
Volunteers at Riccarton Community Day  Oak Development Trust

Proposed rate changes in the council’s long-term plan will cost some charities more than just dollars.

Currently, not-for-profits can qualify for a 50 to 100 percent reduction of their rates to provide support for their community work.

But the amendment to the remission policy means these organisations with high cash balances will no longer be eligible for the reduced fee.

Instead, these charities will only qualify for the remission if they have a financial balance less than 50 times the GST exclusive council rates for that property. This means if their GST exclusive council rates are $5000, their cash and investments can’t exceed $250,000.

For Riccarton Baptist Church, one of the organisations affected by the policy change, they are concerned it will inhibit their ability to provide the full extent of community services they presently offer.