19 June 2020
Today is the last day that you can provide input into the Council’s Emergency Budget. The coronavirus crisis has severely impacted the Council’s revenue, leaving them with a $500M hole in revenue that had not been anticipated in the earlier budget. They are now considering how to deal with this and are looking for input from residents.
Normally, we try to pressure the Council to first look for savings internally before proposing large rates increases. Under the current circumstances, however, any cuts will result in job losses which will compound a slowing economy, making it harder for NZ to recover. We therefore recommend continuing with the proposed 3.5% rates increase, and primarily covering the revenue hole by borrowing more. If there is ever a time to increase debt, it is during a short-term downturn such as this, when the increased borrowings can allow continued spending which in turn helps the economy recover, and subsequently allows for earlier repayments.
We believe that the Council should also look at trimming further waste and at selling assets that we do not absolutely need to own, but the primary way to bridge the gap should be through increased debt.
Click on this link to give your feedback