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Every three years, Council sets about developing a Long Term Plan (LTP) in consultation with you, our community. The LTP is a key strategic planning document that sets out the community vision, work plans and budgets for the next 10 years. 

In the years between Long-Term Plans, Council produces an Annual Plan to check in on how things are going and where we might need to make some changes to keep delivering the services that our communities need and expect.

2024/25 Annual Plan

Our Annual Plan is currently being compiled, you can see the Council agenda for the adoption of the Annual Plan below.

 
Although we were meant to start a new Long-Term Plan process as expected in 2024, due to the changing political landscape and legislation around the Water Service Act Bill, central government has given local councils the option to defer their 2024-2034 Long-Term Plans by 12 months and instead prepare an ‘enhanced’ Annual Plan for the 2024/25 financial year. 

On 28 February 2024, Waikato District Council decided to take this option and deliver a short-term plan, called the 2024/25 Annual Plan which was adopted by Council on 26 June 2024. 

Why we chose the ‘enhanced’ Annual Plan option? 

The decision to opt for a 2024/25 Annual Plan was driven by our commitment to ensuring that our ratepayers are charged with the right amount for the services they receive. The most important thing to us is the wellbeing of our communities, and the enhanced Annual Plan process helps achieve the best outcome for everyone involved. 

This decision has additionally been influenced by the need to leverage confirmed rating valuations, secure Waka Kotahi (New Zealand Transport Agency) subsidies for the district’s roading programme, and have a better understanding of water infrastructure requirements, central government policy and affordability implications. 

Essentially, throughout this new process we were able to: 

  • Address immediate changes and challenges facing our district around water infrastructure. 
  • Receive an official confirmation on our funding from Waka Kotahi in September 2024, which typically accounts for about a third of the Council’s total budget, with 51 per cent subsidised by Waka Kotahi.
  • Address funding, affordability, and timelines around the rates revaluation process.

It gives us more time to engage with you about the services, activities, and projects we will deliver, and how much they will cost in rates. 

See below for more information on some of the key factors behind our decision. 

Why have we chosen the ‘enhanced’ Annual Plan option?

The decision to opt for a 2024/25 Annual Plan has been driven by our commitment to ensuring that our ratepayers are charged with the right amount for the services they receive. The most important thing to us is the wellbeing of our communities, and the enhanced Annual Plan process will achieve the best outcome for everyone involved.

This decision has additionally been influenced by the need to leverage confirmed rating valuations, secure Waka Kotahi (New Zealand Transport Agency) subsidies for the district’s roading programme, and have a better understanding of water infrastructure requirements, central government policy and affordability implications.

Essentially, throughout this new process we will be able to:

  1. Address immediate changes and challenges facing our district around water infrastructure.
  2. Receive an official confirmation on our funding from Waka Kotahi in September 2024, which typically accounts for about a third of the Council’s total budget, with 51 per cent subsidised by Waka Kotahi.
  3. Address funding, affordability, and timelines around the rates revaluation process.

It will also give us more time to engage with you about the services, activities, and projects we will deliver, and how much they will cost in rates.

See below for more information on some of the key factors behind our decision.

Rating valuation

Our district is currently undergoing a property revaluation process and new rating data for individual properties will not be available until close to the end of our proposed consultation period on the Long-Term Plan. This will make it very difficult to communicate to ratepayers the exact rating implications for their property.

Completing the Annual Plan instead means we know the outcome of the property revaluations for year two of the 2024-2034 LTP and can budget accordingly.

Waka Kotahi (New Zealand Transport Agency)

We expect to receive official confirmation on our funding from Waka Kotahi in September 2024.

Roading is typically about a third of Council’s total budget, with 51 per cent subsidised by Waka Kotahi. Delaying our Long-Term Plan provides us with more time to clearly communicate with our community about what       we’re doing and make sure we get the balance for rates over the next couple of years. We want to show that we’re not asking for too much or too little to cover the costs of delivering our projects.

Waters

Deferring the LTP by 12 months will allow time to gain better certainty around the next steps the Government intends to take to implement ‘Local Water Done Well’.

We understand what’s needed to get our water infrastructure renewed and able to manage our district’s economic and residential growth. However, it’s not affordable for our ratepayers, so we’ll be using this year to engage with central government on alternative solutions.

  
Current Annual Plan

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