Mayor Goff's proposals for 2017/18 annual plan accepted
The Auckland Council Governing Body has passed Mayor Phil Goff’s proposed consultation items for the Annual Budget 2017/18.
The consultation items focus on restricting rate rises and raising significant new revenue while restraining borrowing and supporting underpaid and vulnerable Aucklanders.
The proposed consultation items include restricting the annual average rate rise to 2.5 per cent and addressing Auckland’s need for extra revenue to support growth with the proposed introduction of a visitor levy, a targeted rate for new large-scale developments and a regional fuel tax.
“Easing the burden of growth on ratepayers is a priority, everyone has to contribute their fair share to fund our city’s ongoing development,” said Phil Goff.
“As a council, we have a fiscal responsibility to spend the ratepayers’ money efficiently and part of that has to be by doing more with less. However, making savings isn’t enough. We need to find new revenue streams to build infrastructure or we risk this city grinding to a halt and cutting into front line services.”
The vote on the proposed consultation items was passed with an amendment to the 2.5 per cent increase in rates providing for consultation on two other percentage increases of 2 per cent and 3.5 per cent.
Aucklanders will have a chance to have their say on the proposals from 27 February to 27 March 2017.
“The public consultation phase is the chance for Aucklanders to have a say on where their money is spent. I would encourage everyone to be active in the process,” said Goff.
The Mayor’s proposals to the Annual Plan 2017/18 included the following items:
- restricting rates increases to 2.5 per cent
- raising up to $30 million from a new visitor levy to replace ratepayer funding currently spent on attracting visitors and supporting major events
- introducing a targeted rate for new large-scale developments to pay for major new infrastructure, increase Auckland’s housing supply and discourage land-banking
- seeking Government support to implement a regional fuel tax to help close the $400m gap in transport infrastructure funding identified by central government and Auckland Council under the Auckland Transport Alignment Project
- bidding for a significant share of the Government’s Housing Infrastructure Fund
- generating savings from efficiencies across the Auckland Council group
- introducing a Living Wage for council employees
- contributing $500,000 to coordinating work to support homeless Aucklanders.