Johannesburg - Joburg Mayor Herman Mashaba on Thursday agreed to meet Gauteng Premier David Makhura to discuss the 2018 general valuation roll in the City, but said that Makhura did not understand the facts or the measures that were being implemented.
Makhura on Wednesday had expressed concern over the proposed property rates increase in the City of Johannesburg following the release of its municipal valuations recently.
Makhura said that these rates hikes would put financial strain on residents who are already buckling under financial pressure due to the weak economic environment. He said that there could be no justification for these increases which would no doubt have a disastrous end for ratepayers.
This as Mashaba announced that 8 000 property owners will from next week receive Section 78 notices which will revise valuations for properties that appear to be over-valued. These 8 000 valuations, which have been identified as problematic, have experienced considerable increases, many over 100 percent.
But the City's proposals have been met with an overall outcry by residents, especially those whose properties have been re-valued by over 100 percent. A angry property owners started a petition against the high prices being set on their assets on the council’s new valuation roll.
On Thursday, Mashaba said that the City of Johannesburg had embarked on these unprecedented measures to assist residents who have experienced incorrect valuations.
"I am concerned that such remarks could have been made without taking the effort to understand the facts or the unprecedented measures being implemented," Mashaba said.
"Despite this, I will attend the meeting tomorrow with the Premier, but I will do so on the good faith basis that has ordinarily characterised our engagements in the past."
Mashaba said he would also use the platform to engage Makhura to determine whether his concern for household income will extend to a concrete commitment to a deadline for the scrapping of e-tolls, breaking his silence on the VAT increase, and the measures taken by the provincial government to engage national government over the R28 billion reduction in grant funding to local government.
"I trust that we will be able to engage on these and other matters in the best interests of the residents of the City of Johannesburg," Mashaba said.
African News Agency/ANA