Buller District Council


The Rate Records

The rates are struck in accordance with the details that appear on the Council’s valuation database. If a ratepayer notes that some detail on his/her assessment or invoice is incorrect, then contact with Council should be made immediately to correct the record.

The Council’s database is available for inspection at the Sue Thomson Casey Memorial Library (89 Palmerston Street, Westport) or to search on-line using the link below.

Rates Query

Note – while all due care has been taken, Buller District Council does not give any warranty that any information contained is accurate.

Searching Tips:

How do I search for an address?

Enter the street name followed by street number, e.g. Derby 92 – DO NOT enter a street type, e.g., road, avenue or lane.

Searching valuation number?

Enter the valuation number e.g. 1897008700

To view the online rating database click here.

Payment options


Council’s general rates are based on the land valuation of the property plus a Uniform Annual General Charge (if applicable). Further charges are made for various services (water supply, sewage disposal, refuse collection, recycling and waste management) depending on the situation of the individual property.

The Instalment System

Council’s rating year is 1 July to 30 June. There are four quarterly instalments covering the periods July – September, October – December, January – March, April – June.

The invoices for each respective quarter are forwarded to the ratepayer on or about 1 August, 1 November, 1 February and 1 May. An assessment for the annual rates is included with the first instalment invoice only.

If a ratepayer has not received an invoice within seven (7) days of these dates, then contact with Council should be made immediately to ascertain the reason. (It should be noted that the most common cause for this occurrence is that Council has not received a sale notice from the previous owner.)

The last day for payment of the quarters are 28 August, 28 November, 28 February and 28 May (or the first working day following these dates if any fall on a non-working day) – any amount not paid by the due dates shown will incur a penalty of 10% of the balance.

How to Pay

Rates may be paid at either the Westport Office or the Reefton Service Centre by cash, cheque and Eftpos including the use of a credit card. Any post-dated cheque will not be receipted and banked until the date given.

There are also the options of internet banking, telephone banking, direct debit or automatic payment. The valuation number of the property should always be used as the reference when using these options. If you wish to set the Council up for internet or telephone banking our bank account details are as follows:

Buller District Council

To obtain a direct debit or automatic payment form, download one of the pdf below.

Direct Debit

The direct debit system leaves the inconvenience of payment to the Council who will action the transfer of the due amount at the appointed date according to the choice of the ratepayer weekly, fortnightly, monthly, quarterly or annually. The amount for each direct debit is determined by the frequency of the payments and how long it is until the end of the financial year (30 June). If for instance, you set up a monthly DD to start in December, then the calculation will be the amount to clear to the end of June divided by the number of months left in the year (ie in the example that would be 7).

Weekly and fortnightly DDs occur on the Thursday of any week, depending on when you stipulate the start date, the monthly DD occurs on 20th of each month, the quarterly DD occurs on the last day for payment on each instalment, while the annual payment is made on the first instalment due date (28 August).

If any of these fall on a non-working day, then the direct debit will be actioned on the next working day.

To access the direct debit information down-load the application pack pdf below.

Automatic Payment

The automatic payment is controlled by the ratepayer who lodges the completed form with his/her bank. Payments are then made in accordance with the ratepayer’s instructions (weekly, fortnight, monthly etc). To obtain an automatic payment form, download the pdf below.

However, it should be noted that the ratepayer him/herself must make any alteration to the payment if the rates increase or decrease which is usually annually.

How your rates are spent

where rates were spent in 2013-14

Democracy: Includes elections, support for elected members, Long Term Planning and Auditing.

Regulatory: Includes Animal & Stock Control, the Planning department, Building control, Compliance & Enforcement, Alcohol Licensing, Emergency Management / Civil Defence, Rural Fire and Environmental Health.

Community Services: Includes Community Grants and other funding that Council distributes, Libraries, NBS Theatre, Reefton Cinema, Vision 2010 Projects, Communications and District Promotion & Tourism.

Amenities & Reserves: Includes Parks and Reserves, public toilets, cemeteries, Punakaiki Beach Camp and Pensioner housing.

Roading & Urban Development: Includes maintenance & renewal of sealed and unsealed roads, bridges and culverts, footpaths, seats and shelters, road signs, road markings and street lighting. Council also contributes money to Westport’s Taxi Service.

Urban Development includes plantings, street treatments and decorative measures that are carried out within/by the roading network.

Solid Waste: Includes the Collection, transfer and final disposal of waste materials, including both rubbish and recycling. Council also operates/maintains two Transfer Stations and two landfills.

Water Supplies: Includes water supplies available in Westport/Carters Beach, Punakaiki, Cape Foulwind, Waimangaroa, South Granity, Ngakawau/Hector, Mokihinui, Little Wanganui, Karamea and Reefton.

Wastewater: Includes public sewerage reticulation currently available in Westport, Reefton and Little Wanganui.

Stormwater: Includes the management of open drain stormwater systems in Seddonville, Hector, Ngakawau, Granity, Waimangaroa, Westport, Carters Beach and Reefton. Also Includes piped stormwater systems in Westport. (Sections of Westport’s stormwater and all of Reefton’s stormwater goes into their sewerage system).

Airport: Includes the management and control of Westport Airport.

In-House Professional Services: Includes Engineers to support the maintenance and development of Council Infrastructure.

Support Services: Includes Customer Services teams in Westport and Reefton, generation of planning documents such as Annual Plan, Long Term Plan, Annual Report, Council’s senior management team and General Administration.