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2016 And Beyond

March 15, 2006

Media Release (For Immediate Release)


2016 And Beyond

Waitakere City Councillors today completed their deliberations on the draft Annual Plan and Long Term Council Community Plan (LTCCP).

The Annual Plan sets projects and budgets for the 2006/2007 financial year while the LTCCP, a new requirement under the Local Government Act, sets priorities for the next 10 years.

Councillors have been deliberating for two weeks and the plans are open to public submissions from April 13 to May 12. After that, hearings will be conducted and the final plan adopted in June.

The draft budgets show an average rates increase of 6.85% for the coming financial year with similar figures indicated for the next 10 years. The major drivers are depreciation and interest charges which alone account for over half of the proposed increases.

In the next financial year the Council will spend the bulk of its money (78%) on stormwater, wastewater, parks and roading.

Some features of the 2006/2007 budget:

- A feasibility study into a 3000 seat covered grandstand at the Douglas Ttrack and Field in Henderson (next to the Trusts Stadium)
- Water rates remain unchanged (at $1.48 per cubic metre)
- $2 million in next year’s budget for a re-development of Lopdell House in Titirangi (subject to a feasibility study)
- Universal Dr in Henderson will get a $2 million upgrade
- A new Civil Defence headquarters ($1million)

Meanwhile, the Council is also considering a change in its rating methodology. As part of the Annual Plan and LTCCP process, it will consult with the public over a proposal to change from a system based on land value to capital value (and a move to a Uniform Annual Charge for wastewater on residential properties, rather than having wastewater assessed against property values).

Under land value, the value of a property as a vacant site determines its rating valuation. Under capital value, the value of improvements (such as buildings) is also taken into account. The change would redistribute the rates burden more evenly and does not increase the Council’s total rate requirement.

Over the next few weeks ratepayers will receive individualised letters outlining the impact of the proposed change to Capital Value (and the other proposals) on their property.

Other issues highlighted for consultation are:

- Targeted Rates- whether specific areas that are being developed with significant Council funding, and which will benefit economically, should be rated separately.
- Cycleways- should the Council spend $6 million (over the next 10 years) on completing a network of cycleways across the City.
- Transport Strategy- Whether the strategy and associated programme of around $380 million on physical works in roading, public transport and other initiatives is favoured (spread over the next 10 years).

ENDS

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