Our Annual Plan outlines our work programme for the year and how these activities and services will be paid for.
We produce Annual Plans in the years between Long Term Plans. An Annual Plan gives us the opportunity to refresh information and budgets for the coming year, highlight key variances from the Long Term Plan forecast for that year, and includes the setting of rates.
A Long Term Plan describes the community outcomes the Council aims to achieve, and the activities it will fund, to achieve those outcomes over a 10-year period. A Long Term Plan is reviewed every three years.
The Council adopted the Annual Plan 2023-2024 on 26 July 2023.
The Council approved an average rates increase of 6 percent for business-as-usual activity and a cyclone recovery charge of $55 plus a variable rate based on your land value.
Every three years – part way through each election term – council is required to develop and adopt a Long Term Plan. In the years between Long Term Plans, Annual Plans are produced that outline any changes to the budget.
At the end of each year, an Annual Report and Summary Annual Report let the community know about what’s been achieved and how we have performed, as well as anything that hasn’t quite gone to plan or anything unexpected that's come up.
Annual Plans are produced for the years between long-term plans. Annual Plans give us the opportunity to refresh information and budgets for the coming year, and include the setting of rates.
A series of amendments were made to the Local Government Act 2002 (the Act) in 2014 to encourage new ways of consulting and communicating with the community.
One of these amendments removed the requirements for Councils to formally consult “if there are no significant or material differences” between the financials and service levels to what was forecast in the relevant years of the LTP. This now makes formal consultation on proposed Annual Plans exceptions based.
An Annual Plan that includes an overview of any minor changes in costs (along with all other information required under Part 2 of Schedule 10 of the Act) must still be prepared and adopted by council resolution before 30 June.
Council’s Significance and Engagement Policy is the primary tool to determine the significance of Regional Council decisions and give clarity on when to engage.
As outlined in the policy, significant means that the issue, proposal, decision or other matter is judged by Council to have a high degree of importance. This is typically when the impact is on the regional community, or a large portion of the community or where the financial consequences of a decision are substantial.
Consultation involves receiving and formally evaluating public feedback on proposals. Consultation is a particular approach to engagement.
The Council will consult with the community about significant decisions following principles in Section 82 of the Local Government Act. The Council can decide to consult at any time on a decision, where it considers this to be appropriate. For Council decisions, there is no express requirement to consult the public in a particular way, but we usually do so considering people’s views and preferences.
Engagement is a broad and ongoing process of sharing information with the community and gaining feedback, with the purpose of involving the community in the process of decision making. This may or may not include formal elements of a consultation process.
The Long Term Plan describes the community outcomes the council aims to achieve, and the activities it will fund, to achieve those outcomes over a ten year period.
The LTP describes these impacts in financial and non-financial terms, through financial statements and the resulting changes to rates and debt. The non-financial terms are mainly the performance measures relating to the levels of service.
It’s important to remember that the LTP is a ten year forecast and the actual results may vary – these variances will be reflected in the Annual Report each year.
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