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Council Considers Budget

February 22, 2005

Council Considers Budget

The Waitakere City Council today began the first stage of deliberations on its Annual Plan (budget) for 2005/2006.

Councillors will consider draft budgets over the next week before the plan is put out for public submission.

The draft budgets, at this stage, show an increase in Council controlled costs of 6.45% most of which is made up of the costs of rapid growth (for example the provision and maintenance of community facilities infrastructure such as parks, roading, footpaths etc).

The indicative rates rise equates to around $87 a year (around $1.70 a week) for the average residential property valued at $150,000.
Regional levies outside of the City Council’s control (Watercare, Auckland War

Memorial Museum and MOTAT) take the overall figure to 7.2%.
Traditional areas of expenditure such as roading ($13 million), parks ($12.9 million), Wastewater ($20.2 million) and stormwater ($3.1 million) continue to get major attention.

Chairperson of the Council’s Long Term Council Community Plan and Annual Plan Special Committee, Janet Clews, says Councillors will now sift through the budgets looking at both expenditure and levels of service provision.

“Of course you can slash and burn any budget,” she says. “But we have to balance that against the levels of service that people are entitled to expect. We could, for example, save money on maintenance but people may not be happy with having the local rugby field mowed once or twice a year.”

“Councillors must also be mindful of ratepayers’ ability to pay and it is very difficult to weigh that against the demands of a growing City and of increased legislative requirements.”

“During the submissions period we hope to hear more from the community about what they want to see next year.”
Submissions open on 4 April and close on 4 May. After that, hearings will be held and the final budget adopted by 28 June.


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