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From your Mayor - 21 May 2024

Mayor Anita Baker-extend-base-768x402px

Thanks to everyone who gave us feedback on our draft Long-term Plan. We got 326 written submissions, 191 video submissions and more than 100 of you came in to speak to us. It was an excellent turnout. In reading the feedback I noticed some misconceptions about how the Council works and I thought I’d clarify a few of the common ones:

Does Kāinga Ora pay rates?

All residential and commercial property owners pay rates, including Kāinga Ora.

Porirua has the highest rates in the country

The latest NZ Taxpayers Union report has Porirua sitting 7th in the country. Still higher than we want, but our city, unlike others, has fewer sources of income.

Is the Porirua Wastewater Treatment Plant at capacity?

No, the plant has ongoing upgrades to increase its capacity. Current work on the ultra-violet plant and hydraulic system will increase peak capacity from 1000 litres per second to 1500 litres per second by the end of the year. This will give the plant more capacity to treat wastewater after significant rain events.

Why doesn’t Council borrow more for future investments?

We operate under specific rules set by the Local Government Funding Agency to determine how much debt we can carry, based on our revenue. We need to carefully manage our finances to remain within this threshold and to maintain a margin to help in an unexpected event or disaster. This prohibits us from borrowing for non-essential projects.

What are we doing for our harbour?

We’re investing in the wastewater storage tank in the city centre, the Bothamley Park main sewer trunk, and planting thousands of riparian plants to improve the water quality of our streams and harbour.

Who’s paying for Papakōwhai shared path?

It’s fully funded by Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency. Council applied successfully for this funding which helps our city at no cost to ratepayers.

21 May 2024