Anchor projects costs under wraps
An extraordinary meeting of the Christchurch City Council is under way to rubber-stamp a cost-share agreement with the Government that will shape who pays for, owns and manages the city's new civic facilities.
The meeting is being held behind closed doors today so that councillors can give their blessing to the agreement, which also sets in concrete how the $2 billion cost of repairing the city's earthquake-damaged horizontal infrastructure - the roads and underground pipes - will be split.
The deal has been brokered by council and government officials during months of negotiations.
Details of the deal will not be announced publicly until next week as it has to be signed off by the Cabinet on Monday.
It is crucial the council signs off the deal now as next week it must formally adopt its three-year plan (TYP), which sets out its work programme and financial strategy until July 2016.
The draft plan, released in February, proposed an average rates rise in the coming financial year of 6.67 per cent, made up of a 4.74 per cent rise to cover standard services and projects and a 1.93 per cent special earthquake charge, but a report prepared for next week's budget meetings suggests that figure could drop slightly.
That is largely because council staff have reviewed the latest financial forecasts for 2013-14 and believe the council will receive $11 million more in development contributions than forecast.