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Council adopts Annual Plan, calls for sweeping changes to ‘unsustainable’ funding model

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Central Hawke’s Bay District Council’s Annual Plan 2023/24 has been adopted at an extraordinary Council meeting.
The average increase in rates required to run Council business for 2023/24 is 10.88%.
Central Hawke’s Bay Mayor Alex Walker says that the social and financial burdens that many ratepayers are experiencing were at the heart of every Council discussion. 
“Council spent many hours considering how best to balance rates affordability with necessary planning for the future, while balancing the short term impacts of Cyclone Gabrielle. Nevertheless, we know our community will find this increase confronting.
“Central Hawke’s Bay District Council was awarded a CouncilMARK AA rating in 2022, one of only two Councils in New Zealand to achieve this independent rating. However, like every Council across New Zealand, we are finding the work of balancing community wellbeing with delivering everything we are tasked with increasingly unsustainable. Large-scale, unfunded government legislative changes create work and costs for Councils, and our only option is to pass these costs on to ratepayers.

"Comprehensive changes are urgently needed to the way local government is funded, as recommended by the recent report from the Future for Local Government Review,” says Mayor Walker.

The approach to this Annual Plan, also focuses on what is important for our community as we rebuild and recover from Cyclone Gabrielle. 

To read Council’s Annual Plan 2023/24 and to find out the new rating impacts for your property – head to Council’s website and search for #AnnualPlan2023. 

People on lower incomes may be entitled to rates rebates to help bring down the cost of rates across the year. Rates deferrals for up to two years may also be available on application. Please contact Council for more information or visit and search #ratesrelief.

3 July 2023

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