As one of the region’s ratepayers, your contribution plays a vital role in making Otago a great place to live, work and play.

As your regional council, our role differs from that of a city or district council. We’re responsible for managing Otago’s water, land and air resources on behalf of the community. We also contract public transport services, play a role in transport planning, work to reduce the risk of flooding, and lead the planning for and response to natural disasters to help keep people and properties safe.

Types of rates

Rates are divided into general rates, region-wide targeted rates and targeted rates in specific areas.

General rates

These are rates everyone pays as the activities they fund benefit everyone in the region. General rates are offset by investment income with Port Otago dividends and other investment income providing 40 per cent of the general rate funds requirement.

Targeted rates

Region-wide targeted rates

These are rates that pay for a particular activity or service where the same amount is charged to every property regardless of the capital value. Civil defence and emergency management is an example of an activity funded by a uniform targeted rate.

Targeted rates in specific areas

These are rates that are targeted to specific ratepayers as they pay for work that benefits only some people or parts of the region.

How ORC rates are set

ORC rates are set by a Rates Resolution passed annually by Council. The 23-24 ORC rates were passed in the Council Meeting held on 28 June 2023.

How spending decisions are made

Our budget and rates are set by our ten-year, long-term plan (which we update every three years) and our annual plan (which is the yearly breakdown based on our long-term plan).

Did you know that less than half of the Otago Regional Council’s funding will come from rates payments? The rest comes from:

  • Fees and charges, grants
  • Reserves
  • Port Otago dividends, investment interest

You can read our Annual Plan 2023-24, our Long-term Plan 2021-31, and find out the status of our next review.

How the work programme is funded

2023-24 Sources of Funding

Rates due date and late payment penalties

The due date for all current year rates is 31 October.

All rates unpaid on 1 November will have a 10% penalty applied.

A further 10% penalty will be applied to all rates from previous financial years which remain unpaid on 1 May 2023. Further penalties will continue to be applied in accordance with Council resolutions.

Make sure your details are up to date. Late arrival of your payment due to incorrect addressing, postal service timing or any other reason is not the responsibility of Otago Regional Council (ORC). You can also choose to receive your rates invoice via email.


Need help?

Don’t wait until the penalty date before raising inquiries; get in touch because we’re here to help. Be sure to have your rates assessment number handy.

The rates assessment number is at the top of your rates invoice.

Helpful stuff

Page last updated 10 July 2024.