Furore about Kungwini?s property valuations Print E-mail
News - Aktueel
Wednesday, 21 May 2008 02:00
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Bronberg residents are up in arms about blatant mistakes made by Kungwini municipality when calculating the new rates on property.

On 1 July the rate will go from 0,0942 cents in the rand to 0,005 cents in the rand on the land plus the market value of improvements as determined by a valuer appointed by the municipality. Previously, property was rated solely on the value of the land. Certain rebates have been built into the system and must be taken into account when calculating final monthly rates on property.

Residents said that most smallholdings in Kungwini’s western section have been incorrectly valued and that many properties have been wrongly categorised. They added that they never had the opportunity to comment on the initial draft budget.

According to Johann van der Merwe, secretary of the Shere Residents Association (SRA), most Shere smallholdings are substantially incorrectly valued. Based on feedback received from adjacent and other areas in Kungwini, this is not unique to Shere. Zoned

Johann said that many properties have been incorrectly categorised as ‘agricultural’ or ‘residential’, while they have been zoned or are dominantly used for business, commercial and even near-industrial purposes for a number of years.

Property will now be rated on the land plus the market value of improvements

He said that most of these business properties are significantly undervalued, considering the bulk improvements and uses, whether illegal or not. This is to the detriment of the rest of the agricultural and residential property owners.“In some cases, where established businesses with extensive buildings and improvements are blatantly obvious, it is difficult to believe that any individual inspections or at least recent aerial photo’s were obtained in the valuation process, since these properties are in fact valued at values that seem to depict an open or unimproved plot or stand,” Johann said.

According to the national director of Municipal Valuations, Tinus Nel’s answer to Johann, a valuation roll will never be 100% correct as can also be seen in the number of objections in other municipal valuation rolls which are now also open for objections.

Tinus said that some of the incorrectly valued properties have already been identified and will be revalued before 30 June when the new roll takes effect. These supplementary valuations will then also be advertised for objections. According to Johann, communitywide concerns and objections rarely emanate from a situation where the product or service is not 100% correct, but rather when it is substantially, nearly 100%, incorrect.

Concerning the period of objections, Johann said that few residents had the opportunity to object to the initial draft budget. Apparently the Kungwini Draft IDP 2008-9 and Draft Budget 2008-9 was placed at Kungwini’s municipal offices and loaded on the website during the first week of April. The last day for public comment was Wednesday 30 April.

However, it is not known when and where public notices were published in the media to tell residents that they could look at the documents. That is why Johann has doubts about the legality of the 30 April deadline for public comment on the Draft IDP and Budget. He has requested that Kungwini Municipality extend the period for public comment towards the end of May and that the municipality should publish notices to this effect without delay.

The draft budget can be viewed at www.kungwini.gpg.gov.za.

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