Our Long Term Plan sets out the priorities, projects and activities we’ll be focusing on over the next 10–30 years.
Councils do lots of planning. A Long Term Plan (LTP) pulls together a plan for all our activities, major projects, our expected income and costs, and what our rates will need to be for the next ten years. Long Term Plans are a legal requirement and we’re required to review our LTP every three years. Our current LTP (2021-31) was adopted in June 2021.
Due to the disruption caused by Cyclone Gabrielle, the Government changed the legislated requirement for NCC to produce a Long Term Plan with a ten-year horizon. The Government has instead enabled NCC to produce an unaudited, three-year plan for 2024-2027. This change is an acknowledgement of the effects Cyclone Gabrielle has had on our resources and ability to deliver previously planned projects. Despite now preparing a Three-Year Plan, information on budgets and plans beyond 30 June 2027 will be provided to give the community a picture of what projects are in the pipeline over the longer term.
Typically, before we finalise the contents of the Long Term Plan (or in this case, a Three-Year Plan), we go through an engagement process with the community. We ran a community survey in October 2023, asking our residents and ratepayers what they think Napier’s priorities should be. This feedback is helping to inform what we include in the Three-Year Plan.
We’re now developing our Three-Year Plan. The environment we’re currently facing is new and challenging. There are different external factors that will impact the direction our Plan will take. These are:
Cyclone Gabrielle has resulted in new and unexpected challenges that will require significant time and resources from Council. Our Three-Year Plan will detail what we need to do to recover from the cyclone, both now and over the next three years. There is much work to be done, which means some projects that were previously planned may need to be delayed to later years.
Cyclone recovery costs include:
The cost of the regional cyclone response and recovery, including property purchases in land zoned as no longer habitable (Category 3 areas).
Recovery costs specific to Napier, both now and in the long term. This includes repair of the Wastewater Treatment Plant and improving our resilience to major weather events by future-proofing our stormwater network and other infrastructure and facilities.
Various government reform programmes will have a major impact on our future. The current legislation provides that within the next three years, the Water Services Reform Programme will remove around one third of our business and place it into a new water services entity.
The Future of Local Government Review Report recommends many changes to how councils operate to address the challenges we will face over the next 30 years and ensure our communities thrive.
High inflation has had a big impact on our ability to fund services and activities, and this is likely to continue into the near future. A tight labour market also means we need to ensure our projects and activities can be adequately resourced with the right number of staff.
These external factors mean we need to carefully prioritise our budgets and activities in the coming years to ensure we achieve what we set out to do, and work hard to keep rates increases affordable.
Our Three-Year Plan will detail what we need to do to recover from Cyclone Gabrielle. We’ll also focus on the core Council activities our community expects us to provide. These are services such as rubbish collection, roading maintenance, and maintaining community facilities that promote emotional, physical and cultural wellbeing. We’ll prioritise the projects that will help us to deliver these services and activities well.
To guide us in this decision making, Napier City Council has developed a new Vision and new Strategic Priorities.
We've developed these to help us focus on doing the essentials well, rather than spreading ourselves thinly across a lot of different things that aren't needed right now.
We’ll keep the community’s views in mind as we develop the Three-Year Plan. Once it’s written, we will seek formal feedback through a community consultation in early 2024. The Three-Year Plan 2024-27 will be formally adopted by Council no later than 30 June 2024.
The Long Term Plan Amendment 2021-31 focuses on the Local Government Act 2002 provisions required to give effect to the Council’s involvement in the voluntary purchase of residential property rights, as a consequence of Cyclone Gabrielle.
As part of the settlement package announced by the Crown, Council is required to contribute to the forecast costs associated with settling the purchase of residential property rights for Category 3 properties in areas deemed unsafe to live. There are 20 properties within the Napier City Council boundary that this applies to.
Council’s current LTP does not contain an activity for Cyclone Property Compensation and in accordance with the Local Government Act 2002, this is the purpose of the amendment.
The amendment was adopted by Council on 14 September 2023.
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