Council’s work is funded from a mix of rates, fees, charges, grants, and investment income. To minimise the cost to ratepayers, Council uses other funding sources where it can such as dividends from Quayside Holdings Limited.
Annual Plans allow Council to review and adjust the budgets contained in its Long Term Plan, and set out how Council will work towards its goals for the financial year ahead.
There are two types of rates charged, general rates, which everybody pays, or targeted rates, paid only by specific groups of ratepayers, or a combination of both general rates and targeted rates.
The Annual Plan sets out a general rate that will have an average increase per ratepayer per year of $39 for 2023/24. This is made up of a 5% real rates increase, as well as having to accommodate a 6.7% increase for inflation.
There is also an average targeted rates increase of 9.2% (a 2.5% real increase, plus 6.7% for inflation). The cost per household will vary depending on the location of the property and the targeted rates that are applied.
Key initiatives in the Annual Plan 2023/24:
- Discounted bus fares for youth. Children under 18 years old will travel for free and under 25s will get 50% off. We’re extending Central Government's age-based public transport discounts to include free travel to those under 18 years old (in other regions, free fares finish at 13 years old).
- A refresh of Rotorua's bus network and, with our partners Rotorua Lakes Council and Waka Kotahi, making infrastructure upgrades. This will deliver significant improvements to public transport in Rotorua and connecting the community.
- Further funding to Coast Care, a programme which restores and protects the region’s coastline, and promotes the importance of dunes as coastal buffer zones.
- Investment into repairing, replacing and upgrading the urban stopbanks in Whakatāne as part of our wider flood management work.
- Investigations into the potential of Blue Carbon, carbon that is captured and stored by coastal wetlands, as a tool to help mitigate climate change.
- Continuing to fund community led projects through our grant funding programmes, including the Environmental Enhancement Fund, the School Sustainability and Resilience Fund and Te Hāpai Ora - Regional Community Outcomes.