A Horowhenua farming couple are outraged that Telecom is paying them a pittance to lease land for a transmission tower.
Wendy and Mark Rolston say instead of the meagre $199.36 a year they are getting, they should be paid around $10,000.
Sites usually net landowners at least $5000 a year, telco experts say.
At first you do wonder about it.
The farm’s previous owner struck the lease on January 12, 1988 for just $150.
Okay so they brought the farm knowing what the lease was worth up until 2009.
Via David Shaw of DTZ property consultants in Wellington, Telecom initially extended an offer to increase payments from $180.11 to $3000.
“My client Telecom New Zealand is prepared to offer you a revised rental of $3000 plus GST per annum for the microwave site on your property at Arapaepae,” he offered the Rolstons on January 23.
The couple wrote back, rejecting that and seeking $10,000.
Shaw in turn wrote back last month withdrawing the $3000 offer because Telecom had decided to stick to the original $199.36.
Now here is what I don’t get. The 21 year lease has expired. This means they can now kick the transmitter off the farm in the absence of a new agreement. So just do so if you don’t think Telecom will pay you enough.
I can’t see what Telecom has done wrong here.