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Setting a course for Auckland

24 April 2006

Setting a course for Auckland

Auckland City wants to know what people think about its proposed ten-year plan and budget for the city.

"To realise Auckland's potential to be a sophisticated global city is a challenging job. There are many things we would like to do in the city, however we can't afford to do them all," said Auckland city's Mayor, Dick Hubbard.

"We have a vision for how Auckland could be in 30 to 50 years time and our proposed ten-year plan to reach that vision is complex and will require significant investment.

"We want Aucklanders to tell us what they think are the priorities over the next ten years for getting there," he said.

"Setting the right course for the first ten years of that vision means we can reduce the issues that come from under investment in infrastructure and short term planning in the city without a clear destination in mind," said Mr Hubbard.

Auckland City's draft long-term plan presents five development options (A to E) that each have a different impact on rates.

Option A consists of projects that the council has committed to funding already which means that rates will only increase by the council's forecast level of inflation, 3.2 per cent for 2006/2007.

The council will spend $7.4 billion over the next ten years on providing existing services and maintaining our current assets but there is no capacity in those budgets to fund new services or assets.

The real rates impact of each option, in addition to option A is: Option B - 11.8 per cent over ten years, an average annual increase of 1.18 per cent Option C - 22 per cent over ten years, an average annual increase of 2.2 per cent Option D - 31.6 per cent over ten years, an average annual increase of 3.16 per cent Option E - 26.3 per cent over ten years, an average annual increase of 2.63 per cent.

The ten-year plan proposes funding options to make rates go further including borrowing, using the council's strategic asset fund, central government subsidies, and increasing development contributions.

Increased charitable payments from Metrowater are proposed to fund stormwater infrastructure in the city. This would require Metrowater to increase charges to customers by a small amount in the first ten years; with moderate price increases from 2017 to 2026.

It is proposed that the additional rates funding required for options B to E could come from both increases in the targeted rates and a new development targeted rate which would be ring-fenced for specific projects in the option packages.

"We will make sure that any alternative funding options and efficiencies are in place before we ask the ratepayers to fund the things we do in the city," said Mr Hubbard.

"Our primary focus is to deliver value for money for ratepayers."

Public consultation on Auckland City's draft long-term plan will run from 19 April to 19 May. The plan will be finalised in June after the public feedback has been taken into account.

People can get a summary of the plan and a feedback form from:

* www.aucklandcity.govt.nz

* Auckland City libraries and service centres

the 23 April edition of City Scene

Auckland City representatives will be in shopping malls around the city during the one-month consultation period.

Public meetings will also be held: Date Time Venue Asian network steering group forum Wednesday 26 April 6-8pm Hillsborough Room, Fickling Convention Centre, 546 Mt Albert Road, Three Kings Public/community board Monday 1 May 6-8pm Glen Innes Community Centre, 96 Line Road, Glen Innes Public/community board Wednesday 3 May 6-8pm Level 2 Reception Lounge, Auckland Town Hall, 301 Queen Street, central city

Pacific Island ministers fono Thursday 4 May 3-5pm Lynfield Room, Fickling Convention Centre, 546 Mt Albert Road, Three Kings Youth Monday 8 May 4.30pm-6.30pm Level 2 Reception Lounge, Auckland Town Hall, 301 Queen Street, central city Pacific Island fono Monday 8 May 6-8pm Glen Innes Community Centre, 96 Line Road, Glen Innes Pacific Island fono Tuesday 9 May 6-8pm Hillsborough Room, Fickling Convention Centre, 546 Mt Albert Road, Three Kings Community board/public meeting Wednesday 10 May 6-8pm Hillsborough Room, Fickling Convention Centre, 546 Mt Albert Road, Three Kings

ENDS


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