8.95% rates hike likely for rural residents

JOEL MAXWELL
Last updated 10:06 19/03/2014

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Kapiti Observer

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Kapiti's rural residents face the biggest rate hikes in the council's budget for the next financial year.

The draft annual plan will be approved on Thursday by councillors for consultation, including an average 4.95 per cent rate increase for Kapiti.

This would comprise increases ranging from an average 8.95 per cent for Paekakariki's rural residents, to 3.78 per cent for Otaki urban residents.

Rural residents in Paekakariki, Paraparaumu/Raumati and Waikanae all face above average rate increases because of hikes in the district-wide general, regulatory services and roading rates.

The plan includes a $3.4 million cut from capital works and a $2m cut from operational costs.

This includes deferring an upgrade of the defunct Raumati pool, and the second hydroslide for the Coastlands Aquatic Centre.

However, it also involves plans to start design work on the Paraparaumu and Waikanae town centre upgrades.

The projects come as part of revocation work for State Highway 1, which will become a local connecting road once the Kapiti expressway is completed.

Meanwhile, proposed spending includes a newly budgeted $268,000 for an Otaki splash pad, similar to Raumati's Marine Gardens.

The council has set aside $630,000 for capital expenditure on libraries, arts and museums - including $54,000 for buying public art.

Spending would also include $250,000 on work toward a youth hub - down from the $650,000 in the council's long-term plan, its 20-year budget.

About $400,000 has been trimmed from the long-term plan spend for strategic land purchases, which has dropped to $512,000.

The plan is set to be released for consultation, after minor editorial changes and corrections recommended by councillors, on March 26.

Consultation would run till April 28, with hearings from May 20 to May 22.

The council would consider submissions on June 5, then adopt the plan on June 26.

Submissions will also be taken on whether water fluoridation should be retained for Raumati, Paraparaumu and Waikanae. Otaki and Paekakariki are not fluoridated.

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- Kapiti Observer

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