27 June 2013

Funding for scholarships and community patrol in 2013/14 Annual Plan

The Gore District Council is to fund two new education scholarships in the coming financial year.

The scholarships, valued at $750 each, were among additions and changes to the 2013/14 Annual Plan, adopted at last week's Council meeting. They will be open to secondary school leavers who are going to further their studies but stay in the Gore District although the criteria still has to be finalised.

Other adjustments include a new $2,500 grant for the Gore Community Patrol, increased funding for the New Zealand Gold Guitar Awards and continued funding of $15,000 for the Southland Warm Homes Trust.

The Council is looking at a district-wide rate increase of 4.78 percent in the coming year, which is slightly less than the 4.94 percent increase predicted in its Long Term Plan. Total income from rates will be just over $15 million (GST inclusive).

Plan process challenging but pleasing

Gore District Mayor Tracy Hicks said the Annual Plan process this year had been a challenging one but pleasingly one that a good number of residents had engaged in, bringing some very constructive ideas for consideration.

"Councillors and staff have worked very well together identifying changes required, which has resulted in the plan we have adopted last night."

Setting rates is always a huge and somewhat daunting task and Mr Hicks said he thanked all those involved for their effort, time and good will.

"It's great to see the Council's continued commitment to the work done by a whole host of community organisations such as the Gore Community Patrol and the Southland Warm Homes Trust to name but two," he said.

New fees and charges

The new financial year, which starts on 1 July, sees the Council's revised fees and charges take effect. While most fees remain the same, there are a few activities where they have risen.

These include dog registration fees and aquatic services.

Dog fees rise by $3 for urban dog owners but the removal of the $1.50 National Dog Database Levy means the net increase will be only $1.50. In rural areas the increase is only $1 but again, removal of the database levy means the fee remains pretty much the same.

Corporate services general manager Russell Duthie said dog fees have remained unchanged for the last seven years despite increases in the animal control contract and other costs, therefore a review was timely.

The increase to admissions fees at the Gore Multisports Aquatic Centre and Mataura pool
follows a comprehensive review of charges and a meticulous comparison with other South Island aquatic centres.

The new schedule sees a 50c increase for general admission, Leaping Frogs Swim School fees rise by between $4 and $15, and concession cards increase by between $2.50 and $20.

Other areas where there have been some fee adjustments include building consent fees and resource consent deposits.

Annual Plan 2013-14 [PDF, 3.5 MB]

Annual Plan 2013-14 Summary [PDF, 2.2 MB]

Gore District Council 29 Bowler Avenue Gore P: 03 209 0330 E: