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Upper Hutt Leader : March 21st 2012
2 UPPER HUTT LEADER, MARCH 21, 2012 NEWS 4182098AA 4307419AA Delivered to 21,740 Homes and Businesses throughout Upper Hutt, Stokes Valley, Manor Park and Haywards Cnr Pine Ave and Queen Street, Upper Hutt Ph 528 9654 Now available online at: www.uhleader.co.nz Our Top Ten Stories on: stuff.co.nz go to Newspapers/Upper Hutt Leader Order Photos online at: pix.ccn.co.nz The Upper Hutt Leader is published by Central Community Newspapers, a division of Fairfax New Zealand Ltd, and printed at 35 Bouverie St, Petone. The registered office of Fairfax New Zealand Ltd is 40 Boulcott St, Wellington MANAGER: Jenny Russell firstname.lastname@example.org DDI 527 2422 EDITOR: Rosemary McLennan email@example.com Ph: 528 9654 SPORTS EDITOR: ColIn Williams firstname.lastname@example.org DDI: 527 2427 NEWS: Amy Jackman Amy.Jackman@uhleader.co.nz DDI 527 2428 FOR ADVERTISING: Sandra McIver Advertising Consultant email@example.com DDI 527 2423 Rick Clapham Advertising Consultant firstname.lastname@example.org DDI 527 2424 CLASSIFIED ADVERTISING: Classified: email@example.com Ph: 528 9654 Fax: 528 3021 C www nw n n c nz Home based kaitiaki supported Study over 12 months Part time: 1 -12 hours per week ee free M uri Or is f fr , 12 m nth, rt tim h m b s d nd k iti ki su rt d r r mm th t cr t s f und ti n f r cultur l w r n ss nd id ntity nd br d ns y ur kn wl d f A t r N w Z l nd hist ry Thr u h M uri Or , b th Mā ri nd n n Mā ri chi v r t r und rst ndin f th uniqu nd fund m nt l cultur th t iv s A t r N w Z l nd its uniqu l c in th w rld M uri Or l ks t th hist ry f A t r N w Z l nd nd x l r s th b sics f th lif nd tim s f Mā ri cultur On succ ssful c m l ti n y u will r c iv th N ti n l C rtific t in Mā ri (T W h r ) L v l 2 nd th T Wān n A t r M uri Or C rtific t Mauri Ora Easy Key Self Service Laundromat Fast Dryers Washers Mink Blankets Duvets Bedding Sports Gear Domestic Laundry 4325837AA Dry clothes in only 20 minutes Save time & electricity UPPER HUTT 557 Fergusson Drive, Ph 528 0515 STOKES VALLEY Scott Court, Ph 563 8260 Wash Two Mink Blankets, Duvets, or Woolrests for Only $10! 14 x Dryers from $4 for 20 mins 9 x Washers - from $4 ALSO AT THESE LOCATIONS Taita 970 0994 Wainuiomata 939 5171 Porirua - Cannons Creek 237 0630 Newtown 389 7926 Lower Hutt 569 5792 Levin 06 368 5461 Big rate rises and double debt loom in plan ' I struggled with the rates increase. It's a figure most councillors are not that particularly comfortable about. ' John Gwilliam By COLIN WILLIAMS Five per cent rate increases for each of the next two years and twice as much city debt are the key features of Upper Hutt s proposed Long Term Plan. The debt would grow from $24 million to $49m over a decade. The plan, setting out the city s future strategy, investment and development plans until 2022, will be released for consultation at the end of the month and will be finalised mid-year. The rating and debt increases were noted by councillor John Gwilliam and deputy mayor Peter McCardle at a brief special meeting on Thursday to approve the plan s release. The rate increases of 5.2 per cent in 2012-13 and 5.4 per cent the year after are the biggest in the forecast. The average for the 10 years is 3.6 per cent. This sits below the average rates increase of 4 per cent that the majority of the public con- sidered to be acceptable, the 300-page long term plan says. I struggled with the rates increase, Mr Gwilliam told the meeting. It s a figure most councillors are not that particularly com- fortable about and we want pub- lic feedback on. It s above what our citizens would want, Mr McCardle said. He also noted the doubling of the long term debt. We will have to look at options for increasing revenue or cutting expenditure. The proposed rate hikes follow the council carrying out pre- consultation where 22 projects were detailed for the public s views. The inclusion of some of these projects is a factor in the bigger rate rise, the plan s summary says. It became clear that the majority of participants wanted a future scenario that included new investment in our city. A number of these projects have been included, however, new investment comes at a cost. Some projects were removed such as paid car parking, the learn-to-swim pool and a makeover of Fergusson Dr to provide a dedicated space for cyclists, the summary says. Next year s proposed rate increase comes with a 1 per cent reduction because of an estimated increase in the city s rating base -- the number of properties it can receive rates from. Of the suggested 5.2 per cent increase, 3.9 per cent is the result of maintaining the existing levels of service while carrying out a few essential projects such as seismic strengthening of buildings and bridges and safety upgrades to roads, the plan says. With the 5.2 per cent rise, an Upper Hutt home with a capital value of $333,000 would be rated $1735 for the year. Now, with these figures and forecasts out, the council and its elected representatives want the public to have its say. We are looking to be guided by you. Would you like us to increase, reduce, remove or defer any of the projects . . . or are you happy with the pro- posal? the plan asks. The proposed doubling of the city s public debt is directly influenced by the council s need to fund its share of the joint Hutt Valley Wastewater Scheme and it has been long anticipated and accepted, with more than $16m to be spent on wastewater in the long term plan s last three years. This current financial year s $24m public debt is forecast to go out to $49m over the decade, with more then half the con- siderable increase coming in the long term plan s last three years. Public debt per assessable ratepayer property will increase from $1,510 to $2,791 over this time. The plan shows significant expenditure is required in years eight, nine and 10 of the plan in relation to the wastewater scheme outfall pipeline to Pencarrow, a report from city corporate services director Ian Johnson said. This is the main driver for debt reaching its highest level in the last year of the plan. The benefits of this expenditure extend for many years into the future and it is appropriate the council s share of the cost is loan-funded, he said. The joint project with Hutt City Council is for the treatment of the valley s wastewater. Rehabilitation of part of the main outfall pipe is set for 2019-20 and a new booster pumping station and further pipeline follows. Fair go: Radhika Ravi performs a South Indian dance at the Festival of Cultures at Expressions last Saturday. The festival was part of nationwide celebrations in honour of Race Relations Day. The theme for the day this year was Aotearoa: A fair go for all. Photo: PETER McDONALD
March 14th 2012
March 28th 2012