If you look at the dollar amounts instead of the percentage increases, targeted rates in our main centres (with access to all our services) will go up in total by between $140 and $169 per year. Nearly $125 of this increase relates to wastewater charges.
a) Wastewater: From 1 July your wastewater rate is going up 13.9% which is the level we agreed with the community in our Annual Plan consultation on wastewater last year. The community decided* we needed to do more work on our wastewater system to provide greater protection for our sensitive environments all around the district after there were several spills in Raglan Harbour in 2016. But this wastewater rate will drop to much lower increases after that – only 2% each year if we choose the Council’s preferred option for managing our waters services in the future.
* We received 465 written submissions and 242 poll responses. The weight of submissions (41% of written submissions and 43% of poll results) was in favour of the second of three options presented for consultation, which proposed targeted wastewater rates should rise to allow for preparation of long term plans to protect waterways and environmentally sensitive areas from overflows.
b) Options for ‘three waters’ management will keep future targeted rates increases down: In this Long Term Plan consultation (14 March to 16 April) we are offering four different options for managing our three waters services (water supply, wastewater and stormwater) in the future. The Council’s preferred option would save $28.3m over the next 10 years and would keep rates increases for waters services as low as possible. You can read about these options in the consultation document when it’s posted to you and goes on our website.* (See delivery dates Q5.)
c) Refuse & recycling: Our refuse targeted rate is going up $28.85 (22%) because our underlying costs are rising and - after reducing the targeted rate to introduce a user-pays sticker system for our refuse collections last year - we have not sold as many stickers as we expected. This could be seen as a good thing, but it means that our refuse targeted rate must go up so that we can meet the costs of providing the service. We will be reviewing our refuse and recycling services and consulting with you separately on them later on.
d) Other targeted rates will go up less than 5% and have been set to cover increased costs.