Council passes four resolutions that give direction to the 2023/24 Annual Plan

The Council today passed four resolutions on the 2023/24 Annual Plan that have greatest impact on those ratepayers connected to water. The resolutions give direction to staff to prepare the final draft of next year’s budget.

A significant impact, primarily on urban ratepayers, is the decision to increase the water budget. This is a direct reflection of the feedback from the community for greater responsibility in the water space.

Of the 180 submissions on the Annual Plan Consultation Document, over 70% asked for an increase in the water budget.

The resolutions passed by Councillors today were:

• Increase the water budget to $4.871m, from the forecasted Long-term Plan amount of $3.541m. A further resolution was passed to add $500,000, charged to ratepayers, to help with addressing the issues related to the abatement notice for the Martinborough wastewater treatment plant.

• Retain the Rural Roading Reserve at $300,000 per annum. Councillors agreed the upcoming rating review should address how rural roads are funded in future as it is currently fully funded by rural ratepayers, yet used by all.

• Remove the $165,000 for a casual pool of library staff on an ‘as needed’ basis to cover scheduled and unscheduled leave, such as sickness. This means that some libraries may be closed on some days due to a lack of sufficient staffing numbers, estimated as 4 days per month.

• Reduce the funding for community and youth grants from $170,000 to $120,000.

A final draft of the Annual Plan will be presented for adoption at the Council meeting on 28 June.

Analysis of the submissions can be found in the Deliberations report

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