Time is running out for Franklin residents to have their say on Auckland Council’s Emergency Budget which could have a big impact on local communities says Deputy Mayor and Franklin Councillor Bill Cashmore.
Public consultation on the budget closes this Friday, 19 June. In response to the COVID-19 crisis it proposes cuts to spending across the board, deferrals for big infrastructure projects and reductions to council services to tackle a predicted $525 million in lost income.
“This is an uncharted financial crisis and we must be prudent in how we manage our finances,” says Deputy Mayor and Franklin Councillor Bill Cashmore. “We have tough decisions ahead and no easy answers to how the council balances its books, so it’s important that our communities help us make these decisions together.
“Our recovery plan looks to continue investing in the infrastructure the city needs to stimulate our economy and speed up our recovery, while working to maintain the essential services Aucklanders rely on,” he says.
“But the stark reality is the council will not have the money to provide the same levels of services or investment in communities like Franklin that it has previously.
“It means there will be changes to how council services are run in our communities. That’s why as many residents as possible need to make their voices heard on what they think about this budget.
“The proposed budget gives a clear choice to Aucklanders asking whether they support a previously agreed 3.5 per cent average general rates increase, or a lower increase of 2.5 per cent.
“Both options mean a reduction in spending, infrastructure investment and in the services the council provides but they differ in the size of these impacts with a 2.5 per cent increase seeing further and more significant reductions for communities across Franklin.
"The council plays its part in our community with 10 world class regional parks, hundreds of local parks and sport fields, running 27 community halls, two libraries and supporting six other rural libraries which are well used and relied on by the community.
"So now, more than ever, is the time for you to tell us what matters for our community and our region.
“With five days left in the budget consultation, if you haven’t given feedback already, I urge do it today,” says Councillor Cashmore.
How to Have Your Say on the Emergency Budget
Consultation on the Emergency Budget 2020/2021 is open until Friday 19 June 2020.
Feedback can be given online at akhaveyoursay.nz/emergency-budget