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Charitable payments allow stormwater investment

AUCKLAND CITY COUNCIL
MEDIA RELEASE
26 July 2006

Charitable payments allow investment into stormwater

Auckland City has budgeted for an increase in the amount Metrowater pays to council in the form of charitable payments. In the past, Metrowater, wholly owned by Auckland City, has paid the council approximately $5 million per year, which the council has increased to $18 million this year to fund vital stormwater works in the city.

To accommodate this request and other cost pressures, Metrowater has today announced an increase in the average Auckland household water bill of 9.6 per cent. This is the first time since 2001 that prices will increase in real terms.

“Auckland is growing rapidly. Growth means great opportunities. To take advantage of these opportunities and to manage other impacts of growth, the council needs to make sure it spends enough money in the right areas,” said Councillor Vern Walsh, chairperson of the Finance and Corporate Business Committee.

“Significant infrastructure investment in our stormwater is essential to bring our standards up to an international baseline level. Wise investment will ensure we maintain a clean and healthy environment while also providing the services that our communities need,” said Mr Walsh.

“Each time it rains too hard our stormwater system struggles to cope – this is unacceptable. We are ensuring the funding is in place to protect our iconic twin harbours,” said Mr Walsh.

Auckland City has talked at length with the Board and staff of Metrowater in coming to this decision. We took their advice, carefully considered all the information and ultimately decided that the public good of infrastructure improvement is vital for our city’s future,” said Mr Walsh.

This pricing policy and the charitable payments will be reviewed at least every three years. This provides some flexibility for both Auckland City and Metrowater as situations demand.

Ends

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