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City Plan – speak up now

City Plan – speak up now


The community of North Shore City still has a week to comment on the council’s Draft City Plan 2006-2016.

Consultation on the draft plan, released by the North Shore City Council last month, ends at 5pm next Wednesday, April 26.

The council proposes an average rates increase of 8.9 per cent next year with rates rising by an average of 7.1 per cent per year over the 10-year city plan.

This increase is to pay for major infrastructural projects in areas that are important to residents, to maintain existing services and to fund interest and loan repayments, says Mayor George Wood.

Mr Wood says the city plan submission process gives the local community an opportunity to tell the council which services and facilities they want it to provide over the next decade – and how they wish to pay for them.

“There is an opportunity to comment on a number of small changes proposed to the council’s development contributions policy. The current policy was introduced in 2004 in response to the rapid growth of our city. The policy is designed to ensure that those who create demands on the infrastructure of New Zealand’s fourth largest city also meet the costs of growth rather than additional charges being passed on to all ratepayers.

“It’s time to speak up now. So far only 635 submissions have been received which is far fewer than at this stage than two years ago,” he says.

The mayor says topics that the council is getting feedback on are rates increases and the five proposals which include further upgrading the city’s transport system to ease traffic congestion, improving town centres, charging by volume for wastewater, smoothing out extremes in the rating system by levying rates differentially, and looking at changing the rating base from land value to capital value.

“Local residents can still share their views with the council by using the submission form mailed to all households and businesses last month. Forms are also available from the council’s head office, area offices and libraries, by calling Actionline (486 8600) or online from the website www.northshorecity.govt.nz,” he says.

Public hearings will take place in May and June to consider the community’s feedback and people can choose to address directly. The amended City Plan will be considered for adoption by the council on June 30.

A full copy of the Draft City Plan 2006-2016 and an online submission form are available on the council’s website. A copy of the plan can also be viewed at council offices and libraries.

ENDS

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