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Greater Wellington’s LTP Committee Concludes Deliberations With Brave And Future-focused Te Taiao Recommendations

23 May 2024

After five weeks of public consultation and three days of public hearings, Greater Wellington’s Long Term Plan (LTP) Committee concluded its deliberations today, putting forward a range of recommendations for the regional council to consider at its next meeting on 11 June 2024.

As part of the deliberations, Chair of Greater Wellington Daran Ponter said that despite the LTP Committee developing its 2024-34 Long Term Plan under difficult financial circumstances it had managed to balance those pressures with delivering a vision for an extraordinary region, with a thriving environment, connected communities and a resilient future.

“Like all councils in Aotearoa New Zealand, we’ve been hit by double-digit increases in our insurance premiums and rising inflation costs. However, we never lost sight of the work needed to keep our region fit for the future.

“The top of our to do list was a future-proofed public transport network and doing the groundwork to be well prepared for extreme weather events. We are committed to continuing to deliver our core services well and, in some instances, we’re increasing our investment to make improvements,” says Cr Ponter.

With a likely general rate increase of 20.56% in the first year, the LTP Committee made five main recommendations for the Council to consider as part of its final 2024-34 LTP:

1. Include Greater Wellington’s increased control of strategic public transport assets (such as ownership of bus depots and charging stations).

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2. Include the purchase of CentrePort shares to become 100% shareholder in the event they become available for purchase.

3. Provide additional funding in the LTP to:

a. increase public access to Hiwinui Forest Block in Southern Wairarapa,

b. implement further Natural Resource Plan Changes and complete the Regional Policy Statement Change 1 and the Natural Resources Plan Change 1 within this LTP,

c. support a Houghton Valley/Haewai Catchment co-design process with mana whenua, the community, Wellington City Council and Wellington Water Limited, to remediate issues with the stream through a former landfill,

d. continue the Hem of Remutaka jobs for nature project,

e. increase support for community pest management initiatives around the region, outside of Wellington City.

2. Change the water levy for Year 2 (2025/26) and Year 3 (2026/27).

3. Strengthen the focus on the outcomes of Greater Wellington’s activities in our coastal marine area.

Cr Daran Ponter says that he is looking forward to the Council meeting on 11 June when Councillors will confirm final changes to the Long Term Plan ahead of the formal adoption of the 2024-34 Long Term Plan on 27 June.

“This has been an outstanding process, led by a committee of Greater Wellington Councillors and six mana whenua representatives, and informed by quality public submissions and participation.

“I want to thank everyone who has taken part to help guide what’s important for us to focus on for the next 10 years in our fantastic region,” says Cr Ponter.

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