Waipā rates held at 4.4 percent
Waipā rates are likely to rise by an average of 4.4 percent, after a Waipā District Council committee heard from draft Annual Plan submitters and undertook deliberations over the past two days.
The 27 submissions received during the Council’s Draft 2022/23 Annual Plan consultation were considered by the Strategic Planning and Policy Committee on Tuesday 3 and Wednesday 4 May 2022. They included requests for additional funding totalling about $1.1 million.
The two-day meeting saw eight verbal submitters present their submissions to the Committee, with the Home of Cycling Charitable Trust making the largest financial request – for $750,000 to bring the New Zealand Sports Hall of Fame to a new facility alongside the Velodrome in Cambridge.
Funding of $40,000 was allocated to the Cambridge Town Hall Community Trust, $15,000 to the Te Awamutu Chamber of Commerce, $12,173 to Waikato Screen and $3,500 to Waipā Community Trust.
These rates funded items would take the rates increase marginally above the financial strategy rate limit of 4.4 percent, however Chief Financial Officer Ken Morris said other budgets would be reviewed in order to save the approximately $8,000 required to remain within the limit.
A request for $10,000 for the Ōhaupō Community, Sport and Recreation Centre will be considered from Waipā’s COVID-19 Recovery Fund and $84,000 from the Pensioner Housing Reserve Fund will go towards the building of a new apartment by the Cambridge Resthaven Trust.
Committee members supported the Home of Cycling Charitable Trust’s request in principle but directed that no funding go ahead until public consultation had been undertaken showing the level of support from the community for the proposed facility.
Waipā Mayor Jim Mylchreest said allocating funds was difficult and commended Councillors on their prioritisation of the requests.
“I sympathise with those who were not allocated funding through this Annual Plan process and recommend that those who were unsuccessful look at alternative funding streams across the wider Waikato that may otherwise fit their projects,” Mylchreest said.
“We are mindful that the allocation of funding in the 2022/23 year should remain within the 4.4 percent so we had to make some tough decisions. I thank the Councillors for their dedication and insights over the past two days to ensure we could support some of the requests for funding while keeping rates increases affordable.”
Changes to the Draft 2022-23 Annual Plan will be reviewed by the Committee on 7 June 2022, with the final Plan set for adoption at the full Council meeting on 28 June 2022. The new rates will take effect from 1 July 2022.
To view the two-day Committee meeting, head to waipadc.govt.nz/livestream.