South Taranaki district councillors only needed 20 minutes to rubber-stamp their 2012-22 long term plan yesterday. The adoption of the LTP, following months of workshops, public meetings, submission hearings and finally the votes, confirms an average rate rise of 4.4 per cent, down from the original projections of 4.8 per cent.
Audit NZ made its final audit of the LTP last week and reported the council had a "reasonable" basis for their long term decision making.
Mayor Ross Dunlop said he was pleased the council had increased its debt repayment programme, while being able to give extra funding to groups like Rotokare Scenic Reserve Trust and the Sandford Events Centre.
The final sign-off was not without some concerns.
Councillor Mike Powell said the 4.4 per cent rate rise was still too high, although a "huge improvement" on the original plans.
As he has through the whole process, councillor Ian Wards stated his concern that much of the plan hinged on council's Long Term Investment Fund bringing in an 8.1 per cent return.
Councillors also signed off on crucial changes to the capital budget for the Waimate West Water Treatment Plant.
The cost for the next three years will be $14.1 million as opposed to $17.2m.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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