Wa­ter bill pain ahead

Cromwell ward big­gest loser un­der new fund­ing model

Central Otago Mirror - - FRONT PAGE - By JO MCKEN­ZIE-MCLEAN

A new Cen­tral Otago dis­trict-wide charge for wa­ter will have some ratepay­ers smil­ing and oth­ers clutch­ing their purse strings.

All ratepay­ers will pay an equal amount for wa­ter ser­vices af­ter coun­cil­lors voted in favour of a fully sub­sidised wa­ter charg­ing model at a sub­mis­sions hear­ing on Mon­day for its 2015-2025 Long Term Plan.

How­ever, the de­ci­sion was sub­ject to a re­view of the rev­enue and fi­nance pol­icy. The pol­icy would be adopted on July 1, 2016.

Cromwell coun­cil­lors Neil Gille­spie, Nigel McKin­lay and Shirley Calvert voted against the fully sub­sidised model, ar­gu­ing Cromwell ratepay­ers had given a clear ‘‘steer’’ they op­posed the fully sub­sidised model, it was the ‘‘wrong ap­proach to the prob­lem’’, and more time was needed to check facts and fig­ures.

The Cromwell ward is the big­gest loser from the change, pay­ing 76 per cent more an­nu­ally for wa­ter un­der the new charg­ing model. For 2015/16 a Cromwell ratepayer is charged $508 for wa­ter and waste­water. Un­der the

All Cen­tral Otago ratepay­ers will pay the same amount for wa­ter ser­vices from July 1, 2016.

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