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Cabinet approved an Order in Council under the Severe Weather Emergency Recovery Legislation Act 2023 to support Hastings District Council to meet its rating valuation requirements.

Cabinet approved the Severe Weather Emergency Recovery (Rating Valuations-Hasting District Council) Order 2023 under the Severe Weather Emergency Recovery Legislation Act 2023 on 6 June 2023. The Order amends the Rating Valuations Act 1998 so that Hastings District Council is able to comply with its legal obligations and to provide greater financial certainty during the Cyclone recovery period.

The Council was still working on its 2022 revaluation of property values when Cyclone Gabrielle hit the Hawke’s Bay in February 2023.

The Rating Valuations Act 1998 requires valuations to reflect the physical state of properties at the time new values are released to the public.

This means that without amending the Act, all properties that were damaged in the cyclone would need to be identified, inspected, and accurately valued to reflect their physical condition before 30 June 2023.

The Council and its valuers requested the Order in Council as it was not possible to carry out this work nor is there any reliable market evidence for damaged properties on which to base valuation conclusions before 30 June 2023.

Public consultation occurred from 3 to 9 May, longer than the three days required under the Severe Weather Emergency Recovery Legislation Act 2023. The majority of submitters with damaged properties supported the proposal.

The Council will still be able to consider the provision of rates relief for cyclone-damaged properties in its district.

The amendments will continue in effect until 30 June 2026 or the implementation of the next general revaluation after June 2023, whichever happens sooner.

The Order can be viewed on the Legislation website.

New Zealand Legislation

The amendments are similar to those applied following the Christchurch and Kaikōura/Hurunui earthquakes when local councils were unable to meet revaluation requirements due to the impact on properties.