Rates rise to be kept to 2.9pc

Central Leader - - NEWS -

The Auck­land Coun­cil has set­tled on its pro­posed bud­get for the 2013/14 year.

It will put the plan out for con­sul­ta­tion this month so the pub­lic has the op­por­tu­nity to have its say on where the money should be spent.

Mayor Len Brown says keep­ing av­er­age rates in­creases to 2.9 per cent is the goal.

‘‘That’s lower than the 4.8 per cent forecast in the Long Term Plan (2012-2022) and the low­est av­er­age rates in­crease to be pro­posed since the cre­ation of Auck­land Coun­cil,’’ Mr Brown says.

‘‘We must con­tinue to work hard to bal­ance fi­nan­cial pru­dence with in­vest­ment in lo­cal com­mu­ni­ties, trans­port im­prove­ments and boost­ing our lo­cal econ­omy.’’

In or­der to man­age rates, the coun­cil is propos­ing a num­ber of sav­ings and changes. Th­ese in­clude: Chang­ing the pro­por­tion of costs re­cov­ered through fees for an­i­mal man­age­ment, en­vi­ron­men­tal and health li­cences and moor­ing fees as well as stan­dar­d­is­ing hair­dress­ing li­cence fees

Pro­posed changes to rates re­mis­sion and post­pone­ment poli­cies, in­clud­ing the Maori free­hold land rates re­mis­sion and post­pone­ment pol­icy

The coun­cil will no longer mow berms in the former Auck­land City Coun­cil area to bring it in line with all other parts of Auck­land

The Free­gal mu­sic down­load ser­vice of­fered by Auck­land Li­braries will no longer be avail­able

Changes in bach and camp­ing fees in re­gional parks.

Auck­land Coun­cil is also seek­ing peo­ple’s views on pro­pos­als to in­crease ser­vice lev­els in parks and open spa­ces, com­mu­nity and events and plan­ning and eco­nomic devel­op­ment.

It also wishes to con­trib­ute to the cost of the con­tro­ver­sial raft­ing park Wero, the sec­ond stage of the Tel­straClear Pa­cific Events Cen­tre.

The draft an­nual plan also in­cludes the lo­cal agree­ments of lo­cal boards.

Sub­mis­sions on the draft An­nual Plan 2013/2014 will be ac­cepted be­tween Jan­uary 24 and Fe­bru­ary 25.

Goal: Mayor Len Brown aims to keep rates in­creases to 2.9 per cent.

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