Auckland Council gains court order to sell activist's home

  • 10/10/2014

Long-time Auckland activist Penny Bright, who wanted to be a councillor, is in trouble for not paying her rates.

The Auckland Council has gained a court order to seize her home, and sell it to recover the $33,000 she owes.

"I'm the biggest pain in the neck Auckland Council has and I'm proud to be that," says Bright.

She is a veteran activist, a familiar face and voice at Auckland protests.

She is now a one-woman rates revolution.

Since 2008 she has refused to pay her rates because the council, she claims, will not reveal where the money is going.

"I'm taking an extraordinary stand for an ordinary person," she says.

She now owes $33,000 – she cannot and will not pay that.

Fed up, the council, has asked the Auckland District Court to seize her Kingsland home to pay the bill.

The two-storey cottage could sell for $800,000, and the council will deduct the rate arrears and hand the balance to Bright.

True to form, she is not going without a fight.

"It's not going to be sold; I'm not going to move."

The Auckland Council is preparing to take similar action against seven other property owners. The council says the sale process is the absolute last resort and it is something done reluctantly.

Bright claims she is being picked on. She believes it is personal after she had a go at the council chief executive this year.

"I think it is a draconian abuse of municipal power and authority, vindictive and malicious."

She has now filed papers in court opposing the sale.

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source: newshub archive