THE Rakiraki Town Council is taking a consultative approach to rates collections in the hope of achieving one hundred per cent compliance from the very start.
Interim special administrator Seini Raiko-Vunivutu said her team learnt many lessons from the experiences of municipal councils over the past few years.
"It is perhaps the biggest challenge for all councils in the country and this is one area where we hope to get the ratepayers on-side by going put and talking to them openly and honestly about why rates need to be charged and what is the best way we can achieve this by making it a win-win situation for all the stakeholders involved," she said.
"We have a unique opportunity here to get things right from the beginning and not face the difficulties many municipal councils in the country face where they have to chase after ratepayers and enter in to lengthy and costly activities just to collect their just dues," she added.
Mrs Raiko-Vunivutu said a study conducted by the Lands Department in 2009 revealed that there were 731 properties valued at $12.9million that were identified as rate-paying.
"It was also recommended that 0.0089 cents be levied on property values.
"The onus is on the RTC to consult with rate payers to see how best we can achieve this," she said.
Rakiraki was declared a town on July 1 2010.