Media release

ORC’s Long-Term Plan adopted

Wednesday 27 June 2018

Following the receipt and consideration of 569 submissions via the ‘For Our Future’ consultation document and the hearing committee recommendations, the Otago Regional Council today adopted the Long-Term Plan.

Cr Michael Deaker said, “We are listening to our communities. Even though this LTP indicates a rate rise for everyone in Otago, we’ve heard very few complaints around that. Conversely, we’ve heard that ratepayers are keen to contribute more in order for us to undertake more enhancements in this region. I am proud of this LTP”.

The Council considered and discussed the community feedback on the three key proposals including preparing for climate change, water monitoring and urban water quality. Consideration of community feedback received, resulted in the following adjustments being made to the LTP:

  • Water monitoring – extended programme. Funding to accelerate the deployment of three Lake Buoys
  • Lake Hayes – investigation of the lake is strengthened with funding included in 2018/19 to begin remediation work
  • Public Passenger Transport (PPT) – a commitment to explore the Regional Public transport plan process regarding the provision of school bus services and more broadly, the governance arrangements relating to PPT in Dunedin
  • Rees and Dart River control and management – funding for urgent works and strategic review
  • Predator Free Dunedin – a funding commitment for the next 5 years
  • Yellow Eyed Penguin Trust – additional funding over 3 years that funds Council science expertise to support the Trust’s work
  • Lake Dunstan Lagarosiphon – funding of $25,000 per annum for control work
  • Cosy Homes Trust – funding for a co-ordinator working in Central Otago and Queenstown Air Zone 1 areas to encourage uptake of the Clean Heat programme
  • Drainage works – a stronger commitment to specifically Dukes and Riccarton Road issues and more generally, the community engagement on service levels and funding related to the Taieri drainage schemes
  • Otago Harbour – commitment to establish a Harbour Liaison Group

Director of Stakeholder Engagement, Sian Sutton said, “Using our online platform in the consultation process for this LTP was really effective, allowing for more community feedback to be taken into consideration. It was a positive step forward in our goal to improve the way we communicate with the region and we look forward to engaging in more accessible and exciting ways in the future”.

Following the adoption of the Long-Term plan, the Council is now able to receive and approve the Rates Resolution. This will enable the ORC to collect funding to deliver the planned programme of work and services in the 2018/19 financial year.

Total expenditure is forecasted to be $64.221 million which is an increase on the current 2018/18 Annual Plan of $1.522 million or 24%.

Cr Andrew Noone said, “Although the percentage rates are quite high, the monetary terms are quite low relative to the rest of the country. We’ve been controlled in our spending and focused on our core activity and the LTP reflects that”.

ORC Chairman, Cr Stephen Woodhead said, “Thanks to the staff and councillors involved in the process who have worked so hard to achieve this LTP, it is something we can be proud of. Supporting fantastic initiatives such as the Helicopter Rescue Trust and Predator Free Dunedin are key to ensure these champions in our communities are able to keep providing their invaluable services to our region”.

For further information please contact:
Sian Sutton – Director Stakeholder Engagement ORC - 027 575 1799

Communications contact:
Emma Schranz - Senior Media Advisor ORC - 0276275894