Cost projections from KiwiRail briefly appeared to send Wellington Regional Council’s transport budget $2.6 million into the red, a council meeting was told recently.
KiwiRail updated its forecasts in April with the additional costs.
Council chief financial officer Bruce Simpson said a closer inspection of KiwiRail’s projections revealed the rail company had miscoded some capital expenses related to upgrade work associated with the new Matangi trains, and charged work for another train to the council.
‘‘When we sat down with them we actually discovered that quite a significant portion related to capital projects,’’ he said.
The biggest charge was $900,000 attributed to electricity line maintenance, which was actually upgrade work for the more powerful Matangi trains.
Another $500,000 was for replacement buses for trains during line shutdowns, which had been planned for in the upgrade budget.
A further $150,000 was for work done in KiwiRail’s carriage workshop to the TranzScenic train, mistakenly attributed to the council.
The projected cost overrun is now only $300,000, the cost of temporary ticket collection changes, Mr Simpson said.
‘‘I think in hindsight, if they could have their time again, they would have spent a little bit more time on working out their numbers.’’