Auckland’s Long-term Plan of choices and trade-offs

Publish Date : 29 Nov 2023
Its About Choices LTP

Many Aucklanders won’t be familiar with the long-term plan that the council delivers every three years – but this is one of the main tools that helps to shape and improve our city.

In 2024, councils across Aotearoa will first consult with the public and then deliver a new plan. This will cover what they intend to do during their plan's 10-year period and how councils will fund their activity.

In boom periods this process can pave the way for new community assets, programmes, activities and investments.

In leaner times, managing the 10-year plan is more like balancing a tight household budget. There are often difficult choices to be made between spending on day-to-day items, the timing or putting-off of big purchases and giving more thought to the fun events and occasions that everyone enjoys.

Some Aucklanders may favour the council spending more in their local areas and may support higher relative rates increases. Many will want to see a very small or even no increase in rates, seemingly content for local services to remain as they are or even reduce a little. So, the task before us is to look across the delivery of services for all Aucklanders and pick the path that is… just right.

Mayor Wayne Brown says the 10-year budget will ask Aucklanders what choices and trade-offs they're willing to make to get them through the current set of economic conditions.

“The decisions of the past have determined our current budgetary woes. And the decisions that we make now will shape the decades ahead. Nobody here is lacking vision, but we are lacking resources and we need to put Auckland on stable footing. We must get better value from our strategic assets and make provision for our biggest risks.”

Following the COVID-related recovery budget of 2021-2031, the 2024-2034 plan will build on what has shaped the city since 2021, such as storm-related recovery, significant associated infrastructure costs and using what was learned from the effectiveness of the Annual Budget process in 2023.

“I suggest that we commit to strengthening our resilience, financially and physically, over the next three years – providing a solid foundation that will enable our region to make some real progress for the remainder of the Long-term Plan.”

Auckland Council chief executive Phil Wilson leads the team of staff supporting the mayor and councillors to deliver the council’s 10-year Budget.

In March 2024, Auckland Council will ask the people of Tāmaki Makaurau for their feedback on the region’s new 10-year Budget.

“The proposals and mix of funding we consult on will often change based on comments received from the public. The feedback period of communication and engagement is the best time to influence the final decisions that will be made by councillors and the mayor.”

The 10-year Budget has a lot of moving parts and when it goes out for public consultation, it will include:

• A consultation document summarising the key issues and options for public feedback
• Key highlights and priorities for the 2024-2034 years
• Financial statements and key financial information
• Auckland’s 30-year infrastructure strategy
• An updated financial strategy
• An overview of the council’s activities and services, key policy information and information on the council-controlled organisations (CCOs)
• An overview of Local Board agreements and other local information.

The council’s previous Long-term Plan is the 10-year Budget 2021-2031 (Our Recovery Budget) and previous communication about that budget is on OurAuckland.

Why we plan

The way we plan and budget allows Auckland Council to maintain a vibrant and sustainable Tāmaki Makaurau.

It’s about the striking the right balance, finding the mix of funding from rates, investments, fees and charges that continues to fund and develop libraries, pools, public transport, parks, public art, waste management, playgrounds and all the other things that define a great city.

What do you care about? What are the services you value?

Your feedback will help us to deliver a budget that helps our city where to be a place where all Aucklanders can thrive and are proud to live in.

Long-term plans and annual budgets

Long-term plans such as the 10-year Budget cover a 10-year period and are reviewed (and consulted on) every three years. In the intervening years the council consults on and delivers an annual budget, which sets out what it plans to do in the next 12 months to move towards achieving its goals. Consultation on the next 10-year Budget will open in late February 2024.

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