Local projects and services could be impacted by Annual Budget

Publish Date : 02 Mar 2023
Local projects and services set to be impacted by Annual Budget

Plans to reduce funding to the city’s 21 local boards as part of Auckland Council’s proposed Annual Budget could lead to widespread cuts.

Local board chairs are concerned residents may be unaware local projects and services could be affected, and are urging people to provide feedback on the draft budget.

Upper Harbour Local Board area

Chair Anna Atkinson says it’s important for residents to give feedback on the services they need and value.

“With such a large budget gap, all areas will need to prioritise spending. There’s no easy way to do that in the short term because many budget lines are allocated and contracts in place.

“But we will still have to try and find savings of $534,000 in the next financial year, so we’re looking at a huge reduction in our operational budget, cutting it by almost 45 per cent.

“Our key priorities and planned capital projects will carry on but we need to make cuts in services that all contribute to the area we know and love.”

Sanders Reserve

Sanders Reserve

Some key priorities and projects will continue, including:

  • Caribbean Drive sports field and toilet upgrade
  • Scott Point Sustainable Sports Park
  • Sanders Reserve track upgrades
  • Bushlands Reserve and Starlight Park playgrounds
  • Walking Guide update
  • path and walkway upgrades
  • climate change and environmental projects
  • library and community groups dealing with resident well-being.

Services that could end or be reduced include:

  • Environmental education, restoration, pest control and volunteer programmes
  • water quality activities
  • waste minimisation and sediment education
  • grants
  • events, park activations and community partnership fund
  • community programmes such as connected communities, Hobsonville Trust, Meadowood House, Albany Hub and community halls
  • library opening hours and services
  • park maintenance levels and no-mow areas.

Hibiscus and Bays Local Board area

Chair Gary Brown says the budget proposal seeks $838,000 of savings for the area, which would hit the board’s activities.

“Stopping some initiatives, such as pest eradication, could set us back years. So those activities must continue. Likewise, overdue renovations need to go ahead at Ōrewa Library and the East Coast Bays Community Centre.

“But almost everything else is on the table, so it’s vital residents tell us what they want going forward.”

Ōrewa Library

Ōrewa Library

Some key priorities and projects will continue, including:

  • Ōrewa Library and East Coast Bays Community Centre renewals
  • Anzac Day events
  • support for local groups working with youth
  • pest plant and animal control activities
  • environmental volunteer coordination.

Services that could end or be reduced include:

  • Estuary Arts Centre, Centrestage Theatre, Mairangi Arts Centre funding
  • community climate action and sustainability
  • community delivery/ programmes
  • environmental education
  • grants
  • Economic Development Fund
  • events such as Rodders Beach, Ōkura Forest and Mairangi Bay Food and Wine festivals; Sir Peter Blake Regatta, movies and Santa parades, park activations, and East Coast Bays Community Project
  • library services and hours
  • water quality and waste management activities.

Have your say

Feedback can be provided online, via email, by phone, post or at Have Your Say events:

  • Pokapū ā-Hapori o Ōkahukura / Albany Community Hub, 575 Albany Highway, Albany, Saturday 4 March, 12pm-4pm.
  • Whangaparāoa Library, 9 Main Street, Stanmore Bay, Monday, 6 March, 1-3.30pm.
  • East Coast Bays Library, 8 Bute Road, Browns Bay, 17 March, 11am-1pm.

For more information and to give feedback visit akhaveyoursay.nz/budget before 28 March.

Final decisions will be made in June and the budget will be available on the Auckland Council website.

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