In total, the Council expects to collect $480 million (GST exclusive) of rates for the year to 30 June 2024. The 2023/24 operating budget is $817.6 million and the capital budget is $566.1 million.
Public engagement on the draft budget took place during April.
Changes to the draft include:
• An additional $2.3 million of operating expenditure for Wellington Water to repair more leaks.
• Increased organisational savings – a total of $14.6 million incorporated as part of this budget (up from $4.5 million in the draft budget) – on top of $30 million saved over the past three years.
Mayor Tory Whanau says the Council is managing major cost pressures – inflation, borrowing, depreciation and insurance – while doing what it can to keep the rates in line with forecasts.
“With this in mind, we will continue to identify savings which don’t affect our core services or crucial investment in long-term infrastructure, resilience and climate action.”
Councillor Rebecca Matthews, Chair of the Kōrau Tōtōpū Long-term Plan, Finance and Performance Committee, agreed it was a challenging budget. “I’d like to acknowledge the months of work, public engagement, hearings, submissions, and deliberations; and thank the team, community, and Councillors. It’s good to have broad support from Councillors, recognition of the constraints we have, and cohesion around decision-making.”
Alongside the 400 day-to-day services provided by the Council, key projects in the budget include significant investment in Wellington’s water, stormwater and wastewater infrastructure and transport networks; the Moa Point sewage sludge minimisation facility; and the development of Te Ngākau Civic Square precinct, including continuing the construction of the city’s new Te Matapihi ki te Ao Nui Central Library and strengthening the Town Hall.
The Council also agreed to increase the rates remission for low-income households from $500 to $700, meaning those who meet Government criteria are able to apply for up to $1450 off their rates (a Government rebate of up to $750 and a Council remission of up to $700).
Individual rates increases may differ from the average. Rates are based on a property’s capital value, land use and whether it receives targeted rates, a rates remission or is non-rateable. View more information about how rates are calculated.
Households will be able to look up their 2023/24 rates using the Council’s property search tool from late July. Rates notices will be sent in early August, with first instalments due 1 September.
From 1 July, some fees and charges for Council services will also increase, to help pay for the increased cost of delivering these services. Most increases are around 5–6 percent, in line with inflation. View the full list of changes.
The final 2023/24 Annual Plan will be available on the Council’s website in late July at wellington.govt.nz/annual-plan
• The 12.3% figure is after growth (the increase in the number of ratepayers).
• The capital budget includes $126.2 million for the sludge minimisation facility. Because of its inclusion in the budget along with associated revenue, the Annual Plan shows an accounting surplus of $64.8 million. As was consulted on as part of the draft budget, the Council is expecting an operating loss of more than $60 million.
• The 2023/24 Annual Plan is year three of the 2021-31 Long-term Plan. The Long-term Plan sets the Council’s direction for the next 10 years, outlining what it will be investing in, how much it may cost and how this will be funded. It is revised every three years. Find out about the development of the 2024-34 Long-term Plan.