The Marlborough District Council's plans to introduce additional rates for home based businesses does not look good from the perspective of a council committed to sustainability. The idea is a kneejerk reaction to a lobby group, and shows a complete lack of understanding of the diversity of businesses that operate wholly or partly from home. Certainly some home businesses may consume more resources than would be the fair share of a typical residential home, but in my case, the only thing in that category would be electricity, and last time I looked, my power bill doesn't come from MDC. In actual fact I use overall less power, less fuel, and dispose of less rubbish by having my office based at home, rather than a separate office. If the council wants to penalise me for operating sustainably, then I'm quite happy to spend my money on a flash office, a legitimate business expense, which will leave less tax to pay which pays for things like health and education.
Presumably the council also wants to penalise all those arts and crafts people who provide an attraction for visitors.
Hopefully to be consistent, the council will also charge the same tax to those people who use the various market days to sell their wares, often people from outside of Marlborough who contribute nothing in rates.
Perhaps if the council encouraged more of their own staff to work from home, they would find that the savings would eliminate the need for them to contemplate this additional tax.