Norway

Huge price differences on municipal fees

Huge differences in what people may charge in municipal fees here in the country. Prices vary between 4,600 and 16,340 kroner per year.

The inhabitants of Årdal in Sogn og Fjordane pay at least NOK 4 600 a year. At the opposite end of the scale lies Hægebostad in Vest-Agder. The residents will have to spend 16,340 kroner a year for the same services. This shows a review NRK has made of the taxes on water, drainage and renovation in all Norwegian municipalities.

Morten Andreas Meyer, Secretary General of the Homeowners’ Association, believes the state should decide how much the municipalities may require for water, drainage and renovation.

“The differences are unreasonably large and create an injustice,” says Meyer.

He believes some of the explanation is that the municipalities have a monopoly on offering the services.

“Some differences can be explained naturally, others are linked to the fact that some municipalities do not work smartly, are not effective, and they push costs directly across residents and consumers,” says Meyer.

The municipal interest organization KS believes the criticisms are thin and that the differences have natural causes.

Area Director Helge Eide in KS also believes that the citizens in each municipality understand the big differences. Nor does he agree that the price of municipal services is particularly high in Norway.

“I think that getting water, drains and renovations for 30 kroner is not a particularly big burden on the residents,” says Eide in KS.

(© NTB)

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