Notwithstanding that the Cross Recreation Centre is a great facility, located in Balclutha, I wonder if ratepayers fully understand what they are paying for each year?
The council gave $2.5 million towards the capital cost, then $159,000 for carpark sealing and annual operational grants, commencing at $20,000 per annum rising to $43,000pa and totalling $158,869 since 2011.
Incidentally, you can look at the Cross Centre accounts on the charities website under Clutha Recreation Centre Inc. The accounts to 30 June 2016 show that the centre is in a sound position with cash and deposits of $166,903.
In the 2017-2018 annual plan the council states that the repayment of the Cross Recreation Centre loan, by ratepayers, is based on the proximity of the ward to the facility. The 2017-2018 repayments appear in your latest rate demand and they are as follows:
Balclutha: $42.20, $120,900, 49.85% of total; Clutha Valley & Kai Matua: $31.60, $37,900, 15.63%; Clinton & Catlins: $21.20, $35,300, 14.55%; Lawrence, Tuapeka & Bruce: $12.70, $43,100, 17.78%; West Otago: $4.30, $5300, 2.19%.
Surely Clinton and Owaka are further away from Balclutha than Milton is. Why are they paying more than Milton? This is presumably a 25 year table loan so the ratepayers will be paying 25x $242,500 = $6,062,500 – not petty cash, fellow ratepayers.
Perhaps the council can clarify the terms of the loan and how the repayments were in fact determined and by whom. Were they set out clearly in a draft annual plan for approval by ratepayers?
How was the carpark sealing, costing $159,000, handled in terms of who is paying for this and on what basis? Is this added to the original $2.5m loan?
How is the operational grant, now totalling $158,869, and presumably ongoing, handled by the council – who is paying for