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Porirua sets city’s long term priorities

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Porirua City Council has formally adopted its Long-term Plan (LTP), setting a clear focus for the city on essentials, not “nice to haves”.

Investment in critical infrastructure, a strong focus on harbour health and preparing for climate change are the key priorities in the plan, which sets the city’s budget, direction and priorities for the next 30 years.

Porirua Mayor Anita Baker said community feedback and submissions were carefully considered when deliberations were made by Council’s Te Puna Korero Committee earlier this month.

“You’ve told us how much you value the harbour, and that you want us to fix our broken infrastructure – and we’ve heard you loud and clear. We also know we need to address the very real threat of climate change,” she said.

“We’re investing in these areas as critical priorities.

“We’ve put ideas like the Cultural Arts Centre on hold for now. You’ve told us that this isn’t the time for non-essential spending, and we’ve heard you.”

The LTP includes a $1.063 billion investment over the next 30 years in 3 waters infrastructure to improve the pipe network, protect our harbour, beaches and waterways, address flooding hotspots, ensure the integrity of our wastewater system and continue to provide quality drinking water.

During deliberations that investment was bolstered to include an additional $10m for stormwater investment, $6m for climate change projects over years two and three of the LTP, and $600,000 for riparian planting.

Other items in the LTP, following consultation and deliberation, include extending payment of the living wage to Council contractors, introducing paid parking in the city centre, and selling the Moana Court flats to a social housing provider on the basis the tenants get the same or better conditions.

In other infrastructure spending, the LTP includes a $310m investment in roading, to improve resilience and safety of the roading network.

Rates were also set at today’s meeting, and after some adjustments to investment priorities the average rates increase across all rating categories will be 7.65%, down from the initial proposal of 8.05%. A full breakdown of what this means for each rating category is on our website and in the table below.

“We know that rates increases add pressure to household budgets, but failing to make these critical investments today would cost much more in the long run,” Mayor Baker said.

“We’ve worked hard to balance funding this essential work with the impact on our ratepayers, but – with the challenges we face with ageing infrastructure, city growth and future-proofing the city against climate change – the cost of inaction is too great.

“Based on this, I'm confident this outcome is both reasonable and responsible.”

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30 Jun 2021