Delays reduce council debt


Waikato District Council’s audited Annual Report for 2014/15 was adopted at a full council meeting on Monday.

The Council’s ‘scorecard’ to its community shows the organisation progressed on key projects set out in the Annual Plan and achieved lower than expected debt, the council said in a statement.

Highlights of the report included:
• Net debt at $53 million, significantly lower than the forecast $85.2 million.
• Income earned at $142.9 million, $21.2 million more than budgeted for and a 40% increase on 2013/14 figures.
• Completing an upgrade to Pokeno’s water supply infrastructure.
• Hosting a high-profile event to bring economic benefits to the district.
• Reaching record high property consents and information requests.
• Working with our communities to be prepared in an emergency.
• Forming a new roading alliance to service our road network.

Chief executive Gavin Ion said in the statement that the report showed a strong financial performance with higher development and financial contribution income contributing to the overall increase in council income.

“During the year changes to the staging of residential and industrial development in Pokeno provided significantly more income than had been planned, with both vested asset and contribution income above budgeted figures ($11.6 million and $6.9 million respectively).”

The lower than expected debt is due to unforeseen delays and re-staging of capital works programmes.

“Changes in capital work programmes can occur for various reasons. Savings in construction prices, progression and related timing of subdivision activity, weather, public consultation timeframes and negotiations over land purchase. While these are not ideal from a programme delivery perspective, they have positively impacted our debt. “

Mayor Allan Sanson was very pleased with the council’s position.

“Overall we’re in great shape and we have ended the financial year in a good position.”

“The year has been characterised by engagement, partnerships and responding to the challenges of a growing district. We’re in a unique position with the Waikato Expressway bringing more people, more opportunities and more business to our district.

“It’s an exciting time for us as a council and a district and we’re really proud of what we have achieved over the past year.”

The Annual Report and Summary are now available here online. Hardcopies will also be available at council libraries and offices in the coming weeks.

In other Waikato news: Pokeno residents cast doubt on Waikato’s affordable lifestyle

3821 WDC Annual Report Summary infographic P1

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