Auckland Council has spent more than $1.5 million of ratepayers’ money defending a legal battle to the contentious additional rate on the city’s hotels, Stuff reports. The legal fight stemmed from the suspension of the Accommodation Providers’ Targetted Rate (APTR) due to the impact of Covid-19 on tourism. Auckland Council will finalise the immediate future of the APTR when it sets its annual budget, considering options such as immediate resumption, continuing the suspension to July 2022, and cutting its tourism and events budget by $14.5 million.