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“We’ll be coming out to you early next year to hear your thoughts on the city’s Long-term Plan,” said Mayor Mike Tana.
“Our Long-term Plan sets out the city’s priorities, projects and activities – and their costs – that we’ll be focusing on over the next 10–20 years. Our discussion last night was one of many we’ve already had and others still to come – especially with our residents and businesses – as we grapple with the challenges of ensuring our city grows while keeping rates as low as possible.”
Mayor Tana said the Council is mindful of a number of things as it makes its decisions, including focusing on the basics, investing in areas that support growth and diversifying our income.
“Porirua relies heavily on residential rates as its main source of income because we don’t have a large commercial sector or things like ports and airports. So we’re trying to move the income balance from general ratepayers to asking for more of a contribution from those of you who use specific services more.”
To do this we need to consider all options including increasing fees for building and resource consents, recreation services and sports fields, and charges for rubbish bags, parking and pool entry.
“Our community have told us to limit spending and to focus on the basics like water, wastewater and stormwater pipes, roads, rubbish, recycling, parks and playgrounds – the things that allow us to enjoy living here in Porirua. We know that costs for these things are rising every year, so we have to make some tough decisions.”
The Council executive also looked at ways to reduce costs within the organisation.
“We’ve looked for savings through greater internal efficiencies, which will result in an annual reduction in rate increases of 0.6% for the next four years,” Council Chief Executive Wendy Walker said. “This is part of our ongoing efficiency drive.”
Mayor Tana said these proposed changes are just a few of the things that will be consulted on in March next year. “For people who live and work here, Porirua is our place and we really want to hear what is important to you. Do you agree with our proposal to increase spending on our wastewater ($18 million) and stormwater ($2 million) to reduce flooding in the city and improve the health of the harbour? We also plan to spend $10.45 million to make our water supply more resilient – do you agree?
Other things we’d like your thoughts on include whether to spend $3 million on a shared pathway from Wi Neera to Onepoto, to enable more choices for people to move around our city. To take advantage of the opportunities the Transmission Gully link roads will bring to the city and to attract new investment in Porirua, we’re proposing to spend an estimated $15.2 million for eastern suburb revitalisation and $11 million for strategic property purchases. We’re also proposing to fund $50k for schools and early childhood centres to take advantage of recycling opportunities, fund a fenced dog park at $240k, and introduce paid parking to bring in revenue from users.
“We provide many other services too, which will also be included in our Long-term Plan Consultation Document called Porirua is our place – Let’s kōrero. This will be available in March 2018. We look forward to kōrero with you all next year.”
To make it easier and faster for you to share your views on our draft 2018–38 Long-term Plan, you can join our new online community panel called ‘Our Porirua City’.
14 Dec 2017