It has to be one of the toughest jobs in town, but a job that has to be done.
I'm talking about being a member of the Tauranga City Council, or any council for that matter, and having to work through the list of annual submissions to come up with a 10-year plan which in turn leads to the annual striking of our rates.
Our city leaders have just completed that task and have agreed to an average 3.3 per cent rates rise for this year.
Considering our city's debt was projected to reach $400 million by June 30 next year, an increase of $8 million on current debt levels, I don't think a 3 per cent rates rise is too bad.
I know there are those who will think any rate rise is not necessary, but in this current climate I think it's inevitable.
Running Tauranga City is a business and for those who are in business they will know just how tough it is to keep your head above water.
With costs rising left, right and centre, it is inevitable that something has to give.
It has to be one hell of a job trying to balance the books for a city growing at the rate we are.
It doesn't seem that long ago that Tauranga was a sleepy holiday resort where Kiwi families came during the summer holidays and enjoyed the beaches and camping grounds.
There wasn't much else around at the time.
Many of those who visited in the 1950s and 60s were smart enough to buy a piece of land by the water and build a reasonably cheap house or bach.
How things have changed. That section that you probably paid a couple of thousand dollars for back then is now worth a hell of a lot more and the entire area has just taken off.
When I first arrived in Tauranga in 1975, we had one licensed restaurant in the downtown area.
In that short space of time, the area has just taken off and continues to grow.
We have chosen to live in one of the most desirable areas in New Zealand and, unfortunately, we have to pay the price.
It is tough for a city to cope with the growth. To accommodate the constant increase in population, the city council needs to provide facilities, like sports centres, sewage treatment stations and new roads. It all takes money.
There doesn't seem to be anything that hasn't gone up in price in the past 12 months, from daily commodities like our food and drink, to power and fuel (although that's dropped in the last week or so).
One thing that has certainly worked in our council's favour is the drop in interest rates. The low rates at the moment will certainly be saving millions of dollars and I guess, in turn, those savings have been passed on to us by not raising the rates any higher than the 3.3 per cent.
I do realise it is tough for many families to cope with rising prices and I believe there are rates relief packages in place to help those people. Our city certainly has a lot to offer, more than it did back in the 1950s and 60s.
It's now a vibrant, thriving place to live and to bring up a young family, but like any place that is growing there are always going to growing pains, like rates increases.
It is the price we pay for living in the best place in New Zealand.
If you can't stand the heat, get out of the fire ... and no I am not on the payroll of the Tauranga City Council.