Clutha District Council has adopted its Annual Plan for 2019/20 which outlines Council’s planned expenditure and signals an average rate increase of 3.3%.
Clutha Mayor Bryan Cadogan said for Council to be undertaking over 200 projects, a significant increase on historical averages and at the same time as continuing the average rate increase to 3.3% is a responsible balance of expectations.
“With growth projects being undertaken and a continued increase in the amount of ‘core’ infrastructural projects, it was imperative, and hugely appreciated, to have so much support and feedback from the people of Clutha.
“The cornerstone of Council’s new direction has been the community consultations that have been undertaken around the district, and it has been a tonic to engage and be inspired by so many positive people that are passionate about the district we all love,” Mayor Cadogan said.
This annual plan saw a focus on Milton and the wider Bruce area and after considering feedback Council resolved to include a budget of $290,000 in the Annual Plan 2019/20 for further planning and development work to build a combined pool, service centre library facility on the site of the existing Service Centre/Library between Union and Ajax streets.
“Milton is not without its challenges and needs to break its inertia with a combination of decisive projects that will collectively enable the town and wider community to reach its potential.
“The cycle trail, Main Street upgrade, destination toilets, water to Waihola and the proposed swimming pool/library complex are all examples of Council and the public’s determination to go to our collective strengths and hold on to our wider ‘Living and Working’ strategy aspirations.”
Community Projects supported included:
- $250,000 for the Naish Park Coordinating Group towards implementation of the Balclutha Community Plan, the Naish Park and Old Boys/Centennial Park project. The funding would go towards underwriting of stage 1 including tree planting and site preparation, junior bike park and dog park.
- $500,000 to the Balclutha Memorial Hall redevelopment project to support the group looking at future options for the hall as further work is identified during the 2019/20 year, such as geotech investigations etc.
- $15,000 towards Kaka Point’s Totara to Tarata Street Walkway project.
- A $15,500 increase to Council’s Regulatory Services Compliance budget to increase responsible camping ranger levels of service from seasonal to fulltime (subject to funding from other co-funders).
- $58,994 in funding for the Clutha Combined Museums.
- $10,000 to the Clutha Foundation for initial administration costs.
- Increasing the Cross Recreation Centre’s annual operating grant to $48,500.
- $10,687 for the Milton Coronation Hall to help fund repairs to the south wall of the hall.
- Tuapeka-Lawrence Community Company funding increase of $15,000 to bring from $40,000 to $55,000.
- $11,399 of funding for the Milton Information Centre.
- $47,348 of funding for Sport Clutha.
- $7,244 of funding towards Project Bruce’s running costs.
- $10,000 of funding to the South Otago A & P Society Inc for asbestos removal from their facilities at the Balclutha Showgrounds.
The following key projects have also been identified to be actioned as in the 2019/20 Annual plan.
- A Sewer and Water Extension at Gabriel’s Gully. Projected spend of $81,000 (sewerage) & $13,000 (water). This new project is to extend sewerage and water services to properties in Gabriel’s Gully. It is subject to property owners making a capital contribution, with the balance of the cost to be funded from reserves and recovered through future connections.
- Sealing of the Elizabeth Street Carpark. Projected spend of $75,000. Balclutha’s Elizabeth/Charlotte streets carpark is a strategic car park and serves an area with high demand near the hospital. Higher demand in this area and future hospital redevelopment plans means it is important to plan for improved parking in this area. We will also be looking to develop a parking strategy taking into account future developments and needs in this part of Balclutha.
- An Engineering Assessment of Council’s Community Facilities. Projected spend of $50,000. Council has committed to carrying out a Community Facilities review. This project has two parts, a strategic review and an engineering assessment. This budget is to carry out the engineering assessment which looks at assessing and recording the physical assets and a building compliance gap analysis.
- Balclutha Streetscape Stage 2. Projected spend of $50,000 on Rosebank Triangle and $30,000 on professional services for streetscape projects, and carry over the remainder of the budget to 2019/20. Once scoping has been completed, Council will look to confirm budgets for 2020/21 and beyond through the next annual plan.
- Backscanning & Online Improvements. Projected spend of $146,000 towards backscaning building, liquor and food premises files. Provision has also been made for customer improvements to introduce building consents online.
- Asbestos Identification & Management. Projected spend of $40,000. This new project is required to allow for the identification and management of asbestos in Council buildings, required under the Health & Safety at Work Regulations 2016.
- Roading Programme Update. Projected spend of $4,092,000. Delivery of capital programmes and contractor availability is one of Council’s key risks. To mitigate this and make better use of contractor capacity, two-year contracts have been let to complete three years’ worth of work in key areas of the NZ Transport Agency financially-assisted roading programme (structures maintenance, structures component renewals, traffic services renewals and minor improvements). Council approved this approach during 2018/19, which has a flow-on impact on 2019/20 and 2020/21 budgets as well. This means there is a $1,299,000 increase in the budget for the proposed AP 2019/20 compared to the LTP 2018/28 from $2,793,000 to $4,092,000. Council’s rates share for the difference will be funded from depreciation reserves.
- Hina Hina Bridge. Projected spend of $2,729,000. The Hina Hina Bridge renewal continues to progress with a business case currently being considered by NZ Transport Agency for co-funding. If approved it is anticipated that a realistic budget timeframe would be across the 2019/20 and 2020/21 years.
- Balclutha Destination Toilets. Projected spend of $495,000. After Our Place Balclutha community consultation, Council agreed to construct new destination toilets in Balclutha, included in the LTP 2018 for 2018/19. Initial planning work is being undertaken, with construction expected in 2019/20.
Click here to read the 2019/20 Annual Plan.