Part G: Policies and Strategies

Revenue and Financing Policy

Introduction

The Local Government Act 2002 (the Act) requires Councils to adopt a Revenue and Financing Policy that provides detail on the funding of operational and capital expenditure. This policy illustrates which parts of the community contribute to paying for Council’s activities.

We have set out our policy under the following headings:

1. Policy statement on the funding of operating expenditure.

2. Policy statement on the funding of capital expenditure.

3. Setting the level of revenue from rates.

4. Council’s application of the requirements of the Act.

5. The commercial and residential rating differential and the modifier.

6. Summary of operating revenue funding sources by activity.

7. Individual activity analysis by activity group.

1. Policy Statement on the funding of operational expenditureTop

Establishing the level of operating revenue required to fund operating expenditure

Operating expenditure pays for the Council’s day-to-day operations and services, from collecting rubbish and providing street lighting to maintaining gardens and issuing building consents.

The Council will set its projected operating revenue at a level sufficient to meet the current year’s projected operating expenditure, except where the Council resolves that it is financially prudent not to do so.

When setting projected operating revenue at a level that is different from the level of projected operating expenditure the Council will have regard to:

In accordance with these principles, the Council has determined that the following items will not be funded:

Accounting for fair value changes: Under New Zealand International Financial Reporting Standards (NZIFRS), changes in the fair value of certain assets must be accounted for within the Statement of Financial Performance. In accordance with Section 100 of the Local Government Act 2002, the Council does not consider it financially prudent to fund changes in the fair value of assets or liabilities as these are essentially unrealised accounting adjustments.

Non-funding of depreciation on Council assets: The Council may elect not to fund all or part of the depreciation expenditure on specific assets in those circumstances where it is not financially prudent to do so. In accordance with section 100 of the Local Government Act 2002, the Council considers that it is not financially prudent to fund depreciation in the following circumstances:

Non-funding of depreciation on waterfront assets: The Council transitioned the waterfront project ‘in-house’ during 2014/2015. This acquisition has necessitated a transition toward fully funding the depreciation of waterfront assets by 2024/25. This transition funding links the cost of funding to the benefits received over time.

Options available for funding Council services

The Council uses the following mechanisms to fund operational expenditure requirements:

Use of surpluses from previous financial periods

Where the Council has recorded an actual surplus in one financial period it may pass this benefit on to ratepayers in a subsequent financial period. A surplus arises from the recognition of additional income or through savings in expenditure. Council considers that passing this benefit on to ratepayers in future financial periods improves the principle of intergenerational equity, in that any financial benefit is passed on to those ratepayers who shared the rates-funding burden in the financial period that the surplus was generated.

The amount of any surplus carried forward from previous financial periods will be accounted for as an operating deficit in the year the benefit is passed on to ratepayers. A surplus will be available for use in future financial periods if the actual surplus/ (deficit) is improved when compared to the budgeted surplus/ (deficit). In calculating the level of surplus to be carried forward, consideration will be given to the nature of the factors giving rise to the surplus (for example, whether they are cash or non-cash in nature). Generally, only those factors that are cash in nature will be available for use in determining the level of surplus to be carried forward.

The Council will not carry forward surpluses in relation to:

Funding of expenditure from restricted or special funds

Certain operating and capital expenditure may be funded from restricted or special funds. Restricted and special funds are those reserves within the Council’s equity that are subject to special conditions of use, whether under statute or accepted as binding by the Council, and that may not be revised without reference to the courts or a third party.

Transfers may be made only for specified purposes or when specified conditions are met.

The following restricted and special funds are available for use by Council:

Having established its sources of operating revenue, the Council has determined that operational expenditure will be funded through the following mechanisms:

Operating expenditure Funding mechanism Approximate proportion of funding for 2018/19
General Rate 36%
Targeted rates
Sewerage targeted rate 9%
Water targeted rate 9%
Stormwater targeted rate 4%
Base targeted rate 1%
Commercial sector targeted rate 1%
Downtown targeted rate 3%
Business Improvement District and other minor targeted rates 1%
Total targeted rates 28%
Total fees and charges 22%
Other sources
Ground and commercial lease 8%
Dividends 3%
Miscellaneous 3%
Total other income 14%

Note: Decisions on the use of other funding sources i.e. use of prior period surpluses, non-funded depreciation, special and other reserves are project-specific are made on an annual basis. In such circumstances, revenue from these sources reduces the level of funding provided through the General Rate.

2. Policy Statement on the funding of capital expenditureTop

Capital expenditure represents expenditure on property, plant and equipment. Property, plant and equipment are tangible assets that are held by the Council for use in the provision of its goods and services (for example: bridges, libraries, swimming pools), for rental to others or for administrative purposes, and may include items held for the maintenance or repair of such assets.

Capital expenditure is funded from depreciation, development contributions, capital funding, and restricted funds or through new or extended borrowings as outlined below:

Capital expenditure
Funding mechanism
Approximate proportion of funding for 2018/19
Rates funded depreciation 42%
NZTA transport subsidies 12%
External grants 0%
Development contributions 1%
Borrowings 45%

3. Setting the level of revenue from ratesTop

The total level of revenue from rates will be established as the total revenue required to cover all projected operating expenditure after taking into account:

4. The Council’s application of the requirements of the ActTop

This section shows how the operating expenditure associated with each of the Council’s activities are funded through applying the requirements of section 101 (3) of the Local Government Act 2002. Our activity analysis is organised under the following headings:

We make reference to the community outcome to which each activity relates in our analysis.

While each of these areas were considered when assessing who should pay, not all were relevant to each activity, while some had more weight than others in relation to a certain activity.

5. The general rates differentialTop

The general rate is split between the base differential rating category and the commercial, industrial and business differential rating category.

Historically, the Council has applied a modifier to alter the rates differential (the rates split) that decides the share of general rate paid by residents (base differential rating category) and by businesses (commercial, industrial and business differential rating category). In setting the level of the differential, the Council has considered the requirements of the Local Government Act and number of factors including:

In 2018/19 the Council proposes no change in the rates differential. This means that a commercial, industrial and business differential rating category ratepayer will contribute 2.8 times more to the general rate than a base differential rating category ratepayer for each dollar of rateable property capital value.

6. Summary of operating expenditure funding by activityTop

Activity Area Activity Grouping Activity   User Fees Other Income Rates General Residential Targeted Commercial Targeted DOWNTOWN TARGETED
Governance Governance, information and engagement 1.1.1 City governance and engagement 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    1.1.2 Civic information 5% 0% 95% 95% 0% 0% 0%
    1.1.3 City Archives 10% 0% 90% 90% 0% 0% 0%
  Maori and Mana Whenua partnerships 1.2.1 Maori and Mana Whenua partnerships 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
Environment Gardens, beaches and green open spaces 2.1.1 Local parks and open spaces 5% 0% 95% 95% 0% 0% 0%
    2.1.2 Botanical gardens 10% 0% 90% 90% 0% 0% 0%
    2.1.3 Beaches and coast operations 0% 5% 95% 95% 0% 0% 0%
    2.1.4 Roads open spaces 0% 5% 95% 95% 0% 0% 0%
    2.1.5 Town belts 0% 5% 95% 95% 0% 0% 0%
    2.1.6 Community environmental initiatives 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    2.1.7 Walkways 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    2.1.8 Biodiversity (pest management) 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    2.1.9 Waterfront Public Space 5% 5% 90% 90% 0% 0% 0%
  Waste reduction and energy conservation 2.2.1 Waste minimisation, disposal and recycling management 100% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0%
    2.2.2 Closed Landfills Aftercare 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    2.2.3 Energy efficiency and conservation 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
  Water 2.3.1 Water network 0% 0% 100% 0% 60% 40% 0%
    2.3.2 Water collection and treatment 0% 0% 100% 0% 60% 40% 0%
  Wastewater 2.4.1 Sewage collection and disposal network 5% 0% 95% 0% 60% 35% 0%
    2.4.2 Sewage treatment 5% 0% 95% 0% 60% 35% 0%
  Stormwater 2.5.1 Stormwater management 0% 0% 100% 0% 77.5% 22.5% 0%
  Conservation Attractions 2.6.1 Conservation Visitor Attractions 0% 0% 100% 100% 0.0% 0.0% 0%
Economic Development City promotions and business support 3.1.1 Wellington Regional Economic Development Agency (WREDA) and Venues 0% 0% 100% 20% 0% 30% 50%
    3.1.2 Wellington Convention Centre 0% 0% 100% 60% 0% 0% 40%
    3.1.3 Retail support (free weekend parking) - - - - - - -
    3.1.4 Wellington Economic Initiatives Development Fund (WEID) and Economic Grants 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    3.1.5 Major Projects 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    3.1.6 International relations 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    3.1.7 Business Improvement Districts 0% 0% 100% 0% 0% 100% 0%
Cultural Wellbeing Arts and Culture Activities 4.1.1 Galleries and museums (WMT) 0% 0% 100% 75% 0% 0% 25%
    4.1.2 Visitor attractions (Te Papa/Carter Observatory) 0% 0% 100% 30% 0% 0% 70%
    4.1.3 Arts and cultural festivals 0% 10% 90% 90% 0% 0% 0%
    4.1.4 Cultural grants 0% 0% 100% 0% 100% 0% 0%
    4.1.5 Access and support for community arts 0% 10% 90% 90% 0% 0% 0%
    4.1.6 Arts partnerships 0% 25% 75% 75% 0% 0% 0%
    4.1.7 Regional amenities 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
Activity Area Activity Grouping Activity   User Fees Other Income Rates General Residential Targeted Commercial Targeted DOWNTOWN TARGETED
Social and Recreation Recreation promotion and support 5.1.1 Swimming Pools 30% 0% 70% 70% 0% 0% 0%
    5.1.2 Sportsfields 20% 0% 80% 80% 0% 0% 0%
    5.1.3 Recreation programmes 5% 0% 95% 95% 0% 0% 0%
    5.1.4 Recreation Centres 25% 0% 75% 75% 0% 0% 0%
    5.1.5 Recreation partnerships 0% 0% 100% 0% 100% 0% 0%
    5.1.6 Playgrounds 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    5.1.7 Marinas 100% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0%
    5.1.8 Golf Course 30% 0% 70% 70% 0% 0% 0%
  Community support 5.2.1 Libraries 5% 0% 95% 95% 0% 0% 0%
    5.2.2 Access support (Leisure Card) 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    5.2.3 Community advocacy 0% 0% 100% 0% 100% 0% 0%
    5.2.4 Grants (Social and Recreation) 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    5.2.5 Housing 100% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0%
    5.2.6 Community centres and halls 5% 0% 95% 0% 95% 0% 0%
  Public health and safety 5.3.1 Burials and cremations 50% 0% 50% 50% 0% 0% 0%
    5.3.2 Public toilets 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    5.3.3 Public health regulations 60% 0% 40% 40% 0% 0% 0%
    5.3.4 City safety 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    5.3.5 WREMO 5% 0% 95% 95% 0% 0% 0%
Urban Development Urban planning, heritage and public spaces development 6.1.1 Urban planning and policy 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    6.1.2 Waterfront development 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    6.1.3 Public spaces and centres development 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    6.1.4 Built heritage development 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    6.1.5 Housing development 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
  Building and development control 6.2.1 Building control and facilitation 65% 0% 35% 35% 0% 0% 0%
    6.2.2 Development control and facilitation 50% 0% 50% 50% 0% 0% 0%
    6.2.3 Earthquake risk mitigation - built environment 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    6.2.4 Regulator - Building Control and Facilitation Weathertight Homes 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
Transport Transport 7.1.1 Transport planning 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    7.1.2 Vehicle network 0% 5% 95% 95% 0% 0% 0%
    7.1.3 Cycle network 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    7.1.4 Passenger transport network 0% 65% 35% 35% 0% 0% 0%
    7.1.5 Pedestrian network 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    7.1.6 Network-wide control and management 15% 15% 70% 70% 0% 0% 0%
    7.1.7 Road safety 0% 20% 80% 80% 0% 0% 0%
  Parking 7.2.1 Parking 100% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0%

7. Individual activity analysis by key achievement areaTop

Governance

Delivering confidence in civic decision-making

One of our key responsibilities is to ensure that decisions about the city are made in ways that are democratic and inclusive. This means making sure residents are kept informed about what we’re doing, are able to have their say, and feel confident that their views and votes count.

Operating activities

The funding sources for this area are illustrated in the table below.

Activity Area Activity Grouping Activity   User Fees Other Income Rates General Residential Targeted Commercial Targeted DOWNTOWN TARGETED
Governance Governance, information and engagement 1.1.1 City governance and engagement 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    1.1.2 Civic information 5% 0% 95% 95% 0% 0% 0%
    1.1.3 City Archives 10% 0% 90% 90% 0% 0% 0%
  Maori and Mana Whenua partnerships 1.2.1 Maori and Mana Whenua partnerships 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
Capital expenditure

The interest and depreciation costs relating to capital expenditure are incorporated in the operating costs of each activity.

Governance capital expenditure projects are funded through a combination of rates funded depreciation and borrowings.

Governance – activity commentary
1.1 Governance, Information and Engagement
Activity 1.1.1: City governance and ENGAGEMENT

This covers our decision-making and accountability processes. It includes managing the local elections every three years, and holding meetings of the Council and its committees. It also includes developing plans and strategies to promote the city’s well-being, such as the Annual Plan and Long-term Plan.

Community outcome

This activity contributes to the following community outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community 100%

The whole community benefits from this activity. Policy formulation, consultation and planning are essential Council services. They enable elected members to set policies and manage resources to benefit the whole community. Along with elections, they also allow people to influence the Council. These decision-making and accountability processes enhance residents’ well-being by improving the quality of Council decisions and by giving them a sense of empowerment arising from the fact they can have their voices heard.

Who should pay?
Whole community 100%

Since this activity benefits the community as a whole, the fairest and most effective way to fund it is from general rates.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges 0%
Other revenue 0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate 100%
Total 100%
Activity 1.1.2: Civic information

This activity provides for the community to easily access Council information and services such as the Council’s 24 hour call centre, the city’s service centres, and maintenance of the property system. It also includes the cost of the contract for valuation services.

Community outcome

This activity contributes to the following community outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community50%
Individuals50%

The whole community benefits from this activity. Providing information and services to the community and having points of contact where residents can contact us are essential Council services. They enable Council to rapidly respond to information received from the public regarding service problems and other customer feedback.

Individuals may also benefit from access to Council information like valuation and property systems. But these remain core components of the Council’s ratings systems and are utilised by the Greater Wellington Regional Council.

Who should pay?
Individual5%
Identifiable part of the community5%
Whole community90%

The Council receives revenue from the Greater Wellington Regional Council for access to our property and valuation databases. This data sharing arrangement provides cost savings for both organisations.

Although individuals receive significant benefits from this activity and it would be possible to increase user fees, the Council believes the benefit to the community as a whole out-weighs this. For the city to run efficiently it is important there is a constant two-way flow of information and the Council does not wish to limit this with the introduction of further charges. It is therefore appropriate that this activity is mostly funded by the general rate.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges5%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate0%
General rate95%
Total100%

Activity 1.1.3: City Archives

This activity covers the operations of and community access to the City Archives.

Community outcome

This activity contributes to the following community outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community50%
Individuals50%

The whole community benefits from this activity. Maintaining the City Archives collection for posterity and ensuring that it can be easily accessed is an important community service. The City Archives contribute to our understanding of the past and to forging a strong local community – it contributes to our sense of place.

Individuals who choose to use the City Archives can be seen to benefit directly from their access to the collection. The collection is used for private study and for research. Staff support people using the Archives, including assistance with searching and providing reproductions, and promoting the wider use and access of our collections.

Who should pay?
Whole community90%
Individuals10%

Although the individuals that access the collection receive benefits from this activity, the Council believes that preserving aspects of the city’s past are of significant benefit to the community as a whole.

Nevertheless it is considered appropriate that individual users should bear a small cost for any staff research and associated copying costs that they may generate.

The user charges for these services are broadly in line with those charged by the Alexander Turnbull Library and Archives New Zealand.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges10%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate0%
General rate90%
Total100%
1.2 Māori and Mana Whenua Partnerships

Activity 1.2.1: Māori and Mana Whenua Partnerships

The Council recognises and acts on its obligations under the Treaty of Waitangi (Te Tiriti) and its specific responsibilities under the Local Government Act and other legislation. We foster partnerships with Mana Whenua (local Iwi) and consultation relationships with the wider Māori community. The relationship between the Council and Māori is supported by a dedicated directorate which provides us with advice and administrative support on Te Tiriti-based relationships.

Community outcome

This activity contributes to the following community outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community50%
Individuals50%

The benefits of this activity are equally spread between the whole community and the Council’s Mana Whenua partners. Mana Whenua partners benefit by having a direct input into Council decisions and therefore the future direction of the city. The community benefits because the partnership leads to better understanding and cooperation between local Māori and the wider community. These benefits contribute to the general cultural, economic, social and environmental wellbeing of the city.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

Māori have a unique relationship with Council as ‘tangata whenua’ and through their ancestors as a partner to the signing of Te Tiriti. The benefits of the relationship and activity accrue to both Māori and the whole community, and as such it is appropriate for this activity to be funded from general rates.

Our statutory obligations may be the foundations for organisational policy and delivery but on their own they don’t adequately emphasise the importance of Te Tiriti, the partnership with Māori and the critical value that his unique relationship can bring to the city both domestically and internationally.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate0%
General rate100%
Total100%

Environment

Protecting and enhancing our natural environment

Under this area of activity we seek to protect and enhance our natural environment. Wellington is a city shaped by nature. From bush-clad hills to sparkling harbour to rugged coastline, the city’s unique character derives from the land. As the city grows, the challenge is to preserve this natural beauty and drama. Part of protecting the environment is looking after the city’s water supply, rubbish and recycling operations, and sewage and stormwater networks. This is by far our biggest area of operation.

Operating activities

The funding sources for this area are illustrated in the table below.

Activity Area Activity Grouping Activity   User Fees Other Income Rates General Residential Targeted Commercial Targeted DOWNTOWN TARGETED
Environment Gardens, beaches and green open spaces 2.1.1 Local parks and open spaces 5% 0% 95% 95% 0% 0% 0%
    2.1.2 Botanical gardens 10% 0% 90% 90% 0% 0% 0%
    2.1.3 Beaches and coast operations 0% 5% 95% 95% 0% 0% 0%
    2.1.4 Roads open spaces 0% 5% 95% 95% 0% 0% 0%
    2.1.5 Town belts 0% 5% 95% 95% 0% 0% 0%
    2.1.6 Community environmental initiatives 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    2.1.7 Walkways 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    2.1.8 Biodiversity (pest management) 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    2.1.9 Waterfront Public Space 5% 5% 90% 90% 0% 0% 0%
  Waste reduction and energy conservation 2.2.1 Waste minimisation, disposal and recycling management 100% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0%
    2.2.2 Closed Landfills Aftercare 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    2.2.3 Energy efficiency and conservation 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
  Water 2.3.1 Water network 0% 0% 100% 0% 60% 40% 0%
    2.3.2 Water collection and treatment 0% 0% 100% 0% 60% 40% 0%
  Wastewater 2.4.1 Sewage collection and disposal network 5% 0% 95% 0% 60% 35% 0%
    2.4.2 Sewage treatment 5% 0% 95% 0% 60% 35% 0%
  Stormwater 2.5.1 Stormwater management 0% 0% 100% 0% 77.5% 22.5% 0%
  Conservation Attractions 2.6.1 Conservation Visitor Attractions 0% 0% 100% 100% 0.0% 0.0% 0%
Capital Expenditure

The interest and depreciation costs relating to capital expenditure are incorporated in the operating costs of each activity.

Environmental capital expenditure projects are funded through a combination of rates funded depreciation, and borrowings.

Environment – activity commentary
2.1 Gardens, Beaches and Green Open Spaces

Activity 2.1.1: Local parks and open spaces

The Council owns and looks after the city’s parks and reserves, horticultural plantings and street trees. We aim to provide a high-amenity, safe open space environment that gives people a wide range of recreation opportunities. Our work includes the upkeep of gardens, grass areas, trees, sports pavilions and other buildings on reserve land, park furniture and infrastructure. (For information on sports fields, see activities 5.1.2).

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community90%
Individuals10%

The city’s parks and reserves benefit the whole community. They give all residents and visitors access to high-quality open spaces for a wide range of recreation activities, such as walking or mountain biking. This encourages healthy lifestyles. They also make the city’s environment greener and more pleasant for all residents, and provide focal points for communities. This not only improves quality of life but also adds to people’s sense of pride in the city and makes it an attractive place to live and visit.

While those who choose to use the city’s open spaces receive a direct benefit, they cannot be readily identified or excluded from these areas. From time to time our park pavilions are leased to sports and community groups who benefit from their exclusive use.

The provision of parks and reserves brings long-term benefits to the city, which is reflected in the Council’s commitment to fund this activity on an ongoing basis.

Who should pay?
Whole community95%
Individuals5%

Since the community as a whole is the main beneficiary from this activity, it should bear most of the costs through general rates. These costs reflect the enhanced social and environmental well-being through the existence of parks and reserves and the opportunity for residents to use them for recreational activities.

The exception is the lease of park pavilions to sports and community groups. In these situations, the group concerned receives an exclusive benefit and therefore should bear a share of the cost. While our analysis suggests these groups receive 10 percent of the benefit, we have decided they should bear only 5 percent of the cost. This is because the Council wants to ensure that the pavilions are not priced out of reach of these groups. We want to see high levels of participation in recreation activities and encourage people to use the city’s open spaces, and we believe raising user charges on the parks and pavilions could work against that outcome.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges5%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate0%
General rate95%
Total100%
Activity 2.1.2: Botanical gardens

Wellington has four botanic gardens: Wellington Botanic Garden, Otari-Wilton’s Bush, Bolton Street Cemetery and Truby King Park (Melrose). The Council maintains these gardens with the help of community groups and trusts that provide voluntary guides, fund new development and carry out practical work such as planting.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community90%
Individuals10%

The city’s four botanic gardens benefit the whole community. They are of international quality, providing residents and visitors with access to open spaces for recreation and relaxation, as well as opportunities to learn. They play a valuable conservation role, preserving native and exotic plants. By attracting visitors to Wellington they help its economy, and by making the city’s environment more pleasant for all residents they improve quality of life and add to people’s sense of pride in the city.

While those who choose to use the gardens receive the most direct benefit, in most instances these people cannot be identified and nor can they be excluded from these areas.

The gardens do provide a few services which exclusively benefit individual people or organisations. These include:

The gardens also provide educational seminars and programmes which have some private benefit. The newly established Discovery Garden opened in 2017. It is a living classroom, and its role is to provide environmental and botanical awareness for visitors and residents with a strong focus on children. However, as these programmes help people learn about the environment, the Council believes the principal benefit is to the community as a whole.

The provision of the botanic gardens brings long-term benefits to the city, which is reflected in the Council’s commitment to fund them on an ongoing basis.

Who should pay?
Whole community90%
Individuals10%

Since the principal benefits of the city’s botanic gardens are to the community as a whole, it is appropriate for general ratepayers to bear the majority of costs. The Council views the gardens as public amenities and is committed to maintaining free public access.

These costs are offset by some income-generating activities (as above). These are generally commercial activities; the beneficiaries include souvenir hunters, tourists and groups renting function rooms and education institutes. It is appropriate that these activities are carried out on a user-pays basis.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges10%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate0%
General rate90%
Total100%
Activity 2.1.3: Beaches and coast operations

A well maintained coast, with strong natural values and secure structures, is important for public safety and enjoyment. The Council is responsible for the upkeep of many of the city’s wharves, breakwaters, jetties and public boat ramps, as well as the Carter Fountain in Oriental Bay.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

Wellington’s coastline is a distinct part of the city’s identity. By ensuring people have safe access to the coast, the Council is increasing the range of recreation opportunities available to people and encouraging healthy lifestyles, as well as protecting public safety. By beautifying the coast and protecting it from erosion, the Council is enhancing the city’s environment, improving quality of life and adding to people’s sense of the city as an attractive place to live.

While those who use the city’s wharves, jetties and breakwaters receive a direct benefit, in most instances these people cannot be identified. Nor can they be excluded from using the coast. The one exception is boat ramps, which directly benefits an identifiable part of the community: recreational boat users. However, the Council regards these facilities as part of its provision of safe, secure access to the coast and encouraging outdoor recreation.

The Council’s work on the city’s beaches and coastline brings long-term benefits to the city, which is reflected in the Council’s commitment to fund this activity on an ongoing basis.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

Since the whole community benefits from this activity, it is appropriately funded through general rates.

This activity also derives modest rents from club houses on or adjacent to beaches and that revenue is reflected here.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue5%
Targeted rate0%
General rate95%
Total100%
Activity 2.1.4: Roads open spaces

Roads that are clean and have clear edges help to make the city attractive and safe. We look after the city’s roadside plants, removing or pruning hazardous or overgrown vegetation, spraying weeds and supplying free plants to residents to plant on road reserves. We also clean city and residential streets, empty rubbish bins in the central city and remove spills and litter.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

Management of roadside vegetation reduces hazards and makes the road corridor safe and accessible for vehicles and pedestrians. It improves sight lines for drivers, maintains clearance from overhead utilities and prevents growth from blocking natural run off channels or damaging structures such as retaining walls.

This work benefits anyone who lives in or moves around the city by ensuring that footpaths, roadside verges and open spaces are safe and attractive. It helps to maintain the city’s environment and residents’ safety, health and enjoyment of their surroundings.

Who should pay?
Whole community95%
Identifiable part of the community5%

Because the community as a whole benefits, the fairest approach is to fund costs in this activity from general rates.

However, a small percentage of our costs are actually funded by the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) through National Land Transport Fund (NLTF) subsidies, which pass on funding from fuel taxes gathered by Central Government. The amount subsidised by NZTA varies from year to year depending on the work programme (which affects eligibility for subsidy) and the amount of funding that NZTA has made available for qualifying activities. This income is leveraged to reduce the rates funding requirement for the roads open spaces activity.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue5%
Targeted rate0%
General rate95%
Total100%
Activity 2.1.5: Town belts

Wellington’s Town Belt, Outer Green Belt and reserves offer fantastic recreation venues for the public, but they need a lot of care. The Council manages the Town Belt, the Outer Green Belt and other reserves to ensure they are maintained to high standards. This includes custodial duties, operational planning and implementation, hazardous tree management, leases and licenses and reserve upgrade projects.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

The Town Belt and Outer Green Belt benefit the whole community. They give all residents and visitors access to high-quality open spaces for recreation activities, encouraging healthy lifestyles. They also make the city’s environment greener and more pleasant for all residents, and provide focal points for communities. This not only improves quality of life but also adds to people’s sense of pride in the city and makes it an attractive place to live, play and visit.

While those who choose to use the Town Belt and Outer Green Belt receive a direct benefit, in most instances these people cannot be practically identified and nor can they be excluded from these areas.

The provision of the Town Belt and Outer Green Belt brings long-term benefits to the city, which is reflected in the Council’s commitment to fund this activity on an ongoing basis.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

Since the community as a whole benefits from the provision of the Town Belt and Outer Green Belt, it should bear the costs through general rates. These costs reflect the enhanced social and environmental well-being through the existence of these open space areas and the opportunity for residents to use them for recreational activities.

Through this activity we receive modest revenue from the rental we charge for leasing buildings, ground leases, or licenses on reserve land.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue5%
Targeted rate0%
General rate95%
Total100%
Activity 2.1.6: Community environmental initiatives

This activity covers initiatives that directly support the community’s engagement in advancing environmental well-being. The Council provides grants for projects that promote environmental sustainability or greater understanding of environmental issues. It also provides for training and capacity building of volunteers working on environmental projects throughout the City and environmental research and monitoring.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

This activity benefits the community as a whole. While individuals or groups can apply for the grants, the work they fund helps enhance the environment and provides educational benefits for all city residents.

The activity has long-term benefits, as the projects it funds are aimed at ensuring future generations can enjoy a cleaner and more pleasant environment.

This work contributes directly to the Council’s long term goal of pursuing a collaborative, participatory approach towards environmental kaitiakitanga (guardianship), by sharing information within the community and establishing partnerships to achieve environmental goals.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

Since this activity benefits the community as a whole, the fairest and most effective way to fund it is from general rates.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate0%
General rate100%
Total100%
Activity 2.1.7: Walkways

The Council encourages public use of the Town Belt and reserves, and recognises that tracks are important for people’s access to and enjoyment of the city’s bush and open spaces. Tracks also contribute to the integration of active transport modes throughout the city. We currently maintain over 300km of track.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

The whole community benefits from the Council’s provision of walkways. The walkways give all residents and visitors access to the Town Belt and reserves, encouraging them to enjoy the city’s bush and lead healthy lifestyles. They also provide key linkages to transport modes throughout the city.

While those who choose to use the walkways receive a direct benefit, in most instances these people cannot be practically identified and nor can they be excluded from these areas.

The provision of walkways brings long-term benefits to the city, which is reflected in the Council’s commitment to fund this activity on an ongoing basis.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

Since the community as a whole benefits from the provision of the walkways, it should bear the costs through general rates. These costs reflect the enhanced social and environmental well-being through the existence of the walkways and the opportunity for residents to use them.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate0%
General rate100%
Total100%
Activity 2.1.8: Biodiversity (pest management)

The Council runs programmes to control and manage pest animals and weeds on the 4,000 plus hectares of open space land we own and manage. Our programmes align with the Central Government Predator Free 2050, an ambitious goal to rid New Zealand of the most damaging introduced predators that threaten our nation’s natural taonga, our economy and primary sector.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

This activity benefits the whole community by helping ensure the city’s open space land is safe and pleasant to use. While there are direct benefits to those who choose to use the city’s open spaces, these people cannot easily be identified or excluded from using those areas. There may also be benefits to certain communities within the city – for example, a programme to eradicate pest animals from a particular suburb – but, in general, the benefits of this activity are to the community as a whole.

This activity has long-term benefits. For example, eliminating a pest from an area means future generations are less likely to have to deal with the problems that pests cause. The work aids the health of the environment by protecting and restoring land, water-based ecosystems to sustain their natural processes, and to provide habitats for a range of indigenous and non-indigenous plants and animals.

The long-term nature of these benefits is reflected in the Council’s decision to fund this activity on an ongoing basis.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

This activity benefits the community as a whole. Therefore, the fairest and most effective way of funding it is from general rates.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate0%
General rate100%
Total100%
Activity 2.1.9: Waterfront public space

This activity relates to the management and maintenance of the public space on the Wellington Waterfront, and includes the operation and maintenance of a wide range of assets which includes wharves, seawalls, bridges, parks, promenades, laneways and lighting.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community80%
Individuals/Users20%

The city’s waterfront area benefits the whole community. Access to the waterfront and the open spaces near the harbour is generally unrestricted and available to all – residents and visitors alike. A clean and vibrant waterfront area encourages healthy lifestyles and makes the city’s environment more pleasant for all residents. This not only improves quality of life but also adds to people’s sense of pride in the city and makes it an attractive place to live and visit.

An activity that occurs on the waterfront that provides direct identifiable benefit is the weekly Underground Market and Harbourside Market. This activity does provide a private benefit and the user is charged directly.

The provision of public spaces on the waterfront brings long-term benefits to the city, which is reflected in the Council’s commitment to fund this activity on an ongoing basis.

Who should pay?
Whole community90%
Individuals10%

With the exception of the provision of market stalls, the community as a whole is the main beneficiary from this activity, it is appropriate for general ratepayers to bear the majority of the costs.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges5%
Other revenue5%
Targeted rate0%
General rate90%
Total100%
2.2 Waste Reduction and Energy Conservation
Activity 2.2.1: Waste minimisation, disposal and recycling management

The Council operates the Southern Landfill. As well as the day-to-day management of the landfills, we are involved in landscaping, erosion control, resource consent compliance and water quality monitoring. The Council also collects refuse and household hazardous waste which is sent for safe disposal. This ensures hazardous wastes such as oils and solvents do not contaminate the landfills.

We encourage recycling by providing most residents with recycling bins and bags for weekly kerbside collection.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community10%
Individuals/Users90%

People using the landfills receive the main benefit from this activity, as they are able to dispose of their waste in a safe and efficient manner that also ensures the harm to the environment is kept to a minimum.

There are also benefits to the whole community. Without the landfills, people would have nowhere safe to dispose of their waste. That would clearly pose a major hazard to public health and harm the city’s environment.

In 2003 the Council adopted the Life Cycle Costing Model for Landfills. This model is designed to deliver a full cost recovery system over a landfill’s life.

Also the direct beneficiaries of this work are the householders who have recyclable goods collected or who use our recycling stations. These people are able to dispose of their recyclable and reusable waste in a safe, efficient and environmentally-friendly manner.

The whole community receives the environmental benefits from having less waste deposited in landfills.

Who should pay?
User100%

Though the benefits of this activity are split between the community and individuals, the Council believes it is appropriate for users of the city’s landfills to bear the costs. The Council believes it is appropriate to take a “polluter pays” approach to its solid waste operations, meaning landfill fees should be set at levels that discourage waste. This approach is justified by the significant benefits to the city’s environment from reducing the amount of waste dumped in landfills.

The Council has adopted a Life Cycle Costing Model for Landfills. This model is designed to deliver a full cost recovery system over a landfill’s life.

The Council also receives a small amount of income from the sale of recycling bins.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges100%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate0%
General rate0%
Total100%
Activity 2.2.2: Closed landfills Aftercare

We provide aftercare of our closed land fill sites.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

This activity benefits the whole community. Without the safe management of the closed landfills, it would potentially pose a major hazard to public health and harm the city’s environment.

The whole community receives the environmental benefits from having close and safe management of the cities closed landfills

Who should pay?
Whole community100%
Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate0%
General rate100%
Total100%
Activity 2.2.3: Energy Efficiency and Conservation

One of the Council’s long term aims is for it and Wellington to be more sustainable – as reflected in our strategies like Wellington Towards 2040: Smart Capital, Wellington Resilience Strategy, and Low Carbon Capital. This means that Wellington will reduce its environmental impact by making efficient use of energy, water, land and other resources; shifting towards renewable energy resources; conserving resources; and minimising waste. Our immediate focus is on three pillars of activity – Greening Wellington’s growth, Changing the way we move, and Leading by example. Each of these areas contributes to making either the Council itself or the whole community more sustainable.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

The whole community benefits from the Council’s commitment to and promotion of sustainability. By definition the work is of benefit to current and future generations. By reducing environmental impacts and making more efficient use of existing resources more opportunities will be open to the whole community in the future.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

Since the community as a whole benefits from this activity, it is considered appropriate that it be funded from the general rate.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate0%
General rate100%
Total100%
2.3 Water
Activity 2.3.1: Water network

The Council owns a water network of over 80 reservoirs, 30 pumping stations, more than 7,000 hydrants and about 900 odd kilometres of underground pipes. We maintain this network to ensure Wellingtonians have high-quality drinking water available at all times. Our work includes monitoring water quality to ensure it meets the required standards, and cleaning reservoirs and pipes.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community25%
Identifiable parts of the community75%

Water supply is a fundamental Council service. Residents need clean drinking water, as well as water for washing. Water is also vital for industry and commerce. The benefits to commercial users are entirely private and exclusive. The benefits to individual people are mainly private, but there are also significant benefits to the community as a whole in terms of public health and safety, and economic well-being.

Who should pay?
Identifiable parts of the community:
Base (residential) sector
60%
Commercial sector 40%

While it is recognised that there is a whole community benefit from the provision of the water supply activity, this, along with the benefit received by individuals is best reflected through a targeted rate imposed on those properties connected to the public water supply.

The division of costs between the two sectors is based on a water consumption split, modified on the basis of the additional maintenance and service response required in the commercial sector, to a 60% residential 40% commercial split.

The 60% residential share is funded through a targeted rate. The majority of properties (those that do not have a water meter) are charged a fixed amount, to reflect the fixed cost component of funding these activities, with the balance of the sector share funded through a rate per dollar of capital value. Those properties that have elected to have a water meter contribute to the targeted rate through a consumption charge.

The 40% of costs funded through the Commercial sector is drawn from a targeted rate primarily through a consumption charge per cubic metre of water consumed. The balance of commercial properties without a water meter, pay their share of the targeted rate through a rate per dollar of capital value.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate (Residential 60%, Commercial 40%)100%
General rate0%
Total100%
Activity 2.3.2: Water collection and treatment

We buy water for the city in bulk from the Greater Wellington Regional Council. The regional council treats the water at four sites in the Hutt Valley – Te Marua, Waterloo, Gear Island and Wainuiomata – to ensure it meets New Zealand drinking water standards. We pay based on how much water the city uses. Some of our costs are recovered from customers with water meters, while the rest is covered by water rates. Responsibility for water supply is vested in the Council under the Local Government Act.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community25%
Identifiable parts of the community75%

Water supply is a fundamental Council service. Residents need clean drinking water, as well as water for washing. Water is also vital for industry and commerce. Though water supply is essential in a modern city, the benefits are largely private.

There is also some benefit to the community as a whole from the Council’s provision of clean, drinkable water. This includes public health benefits, provision of water for fire-fighting, and the benefits of a reliable water supply for the economy.

Who should pay?
Identifiable parts of the community:
Base (residential) sector
60%
Commercial sector 40%

While it is recognised that there is a whole community benefit from the provision of the water supply activity, this, along with the benefit received by individuals is best reflected through a targeted rate imposed on those properties connected to the public water supply.

The division of costs between the two sectors is based on a water consumption split, modified on the basis of the additional maintenance and service response required in the commercial sector, to a 60% residential 40% commercial split.

The 60% residential share is funded through a targeted rate. The majority of properties (those that do not have a water meter) are charged a fixed charge, to reflect the fixed cost component of funding these activities, with the balance of the sector share funded through a rate per dollar of capital value. Those properties that have elected to have a water meter contribute to the targeted rate through a consumption charge.

The 40% of costs for activities funded through the Commercial sector is drawn from a targeted rate primarily through a consumption charge of per cubic metre of water consumed and an administration fee. The balance of commercial properties without a water meter, pay their share of the targeted rate through a rate per dollar of capital value.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate (Residential 60%, Commercial 40%)100%
General rate0%
Total100%
2.4 Wastewater
Activity 2.4.1: Sewage collection and disposal network

The Council is responsible for more than 1,000 kilometres of sewer pipes and tunnels, of which almost half are over 50 years old. The sewage network also includes 62 pumping stations which need regular maintenance and ultimately replacement once they have come to the end of their economic life.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community20%
Identifiable parts of the community80%

The sewage network mainly benefits individuals by providing for the safe, sanitary removal of sewage waste from their homes and businesses, and ensuring that waste is treated and disposed of in ways that do not harm the environment. Though these benefits are private they are not exclusive – all homes and businesses use the system, and it would have to exist for public good reasons regardless of the individual benefits.

The sewage system benefits the whole community by protecting public health and the overall state of the environment. The system is a fundamental part of the city’s infrastructure. Without it Wellington could not operate as a modern efficient city.

Who should pay?
Identifiable parts of the community:
Base (residential) sector
60%
Commercial sector 35%
User charges 5%

While it is recognised that there is a whole community benefit from this activity, this, along with the benefit received by individuals is best reflected through a targeted rate imposed on those properties with sewer connections.

The division of costs between the two sectors is based on a ‘water in, water out’ concept. As a result the sector split for this targeted rate is the same as for water supply. The cost of network installation and maintenance in the commercial area is more expensive due to its size, pressures, standards and service levels. This is reflected in the 60%/40% split.

The 60% residential share is collected through a targeted rate. This rate incorporates a fixed charge, with the balance of the sector share funded through a rate per dollar of capital value.

The 40% commercial sector share is collected through a targeted rate based on a rate per dollar of capital value (35%) and trade waste charges (5%).

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges5%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate (Residential 60%, Commercial 35%)95%
General rate0%
Total100%
Activity 2.4.2: Sewage treatment

Sewage is treated at three plants: Moa Point, Karori, and Porirua. The waste treatment plants at Moa Point and Karori are financed by the Council and operated by Veolia. Sewage from Wellington’s northern suburbs is transferred to the Porirua plant, in which the Council has a 27.6% stake. Once sewage is treated at Moa Point and Karori, waste water is piped into the Cook Strait and the sludge is taken to the Southern Landfill.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community20%
Identifiable parts of the community80%

The sewage treatment system mainly benefits individuals by ensuring the waste removed from their homes and businesses is disposed of in ways that do not harm the environment. Though these benefits are private they are not exclusive – all homes and businesses use the sewerage system, and sewage would have to be treated for public good reasons regardless of the individual benefits.

The sewage treatment system benefits the whole community by protecting public health and the overall state of the environment. The system is a fundamental part of the city’s infrastructure. Without it, Wellington could not operate as a modern, efficient city.

Who should pay?
Identifiable parts of the community:
Base (residential) sector
60%
Commercial sector 35%
User 5%

While it is recognised that there is a whole community benefit from the provision of this activity, this, along with the benefit received by individuals is best reflected through a targeted rate imposed on those properties with sewer connections.

The division of costs between the two sectors is based on a ‘water in, water out’ concept. As a result the sector split for this targeted rate is the same as for water supply. The cost of network installation and maintenance in the commercial area is more expensive due to its size, pressures, standards and service levels. This is reflected in the 60%/40% split.

The 60% residential share is collected through a targeted rate. This rate incorporates a fixed amount per property, with the balance of the sector share funded through a rate per dollar of capital value.

The 40% commercial sector share is collected through a targeted rate based on a rate per dollar of capital value (35%) and trade waste charges (5%).

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges5%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate (Residential 60%, Commercial 35%)95%
General rate0%
Total100%
2.5 Stormwater
Activity 2.5.1: Stormwater management

Each year, Wellington’s stormwater network carries around 80 million cubic metres of runoff from gutters and drains to the harbour and city streams. This drainage network helps protect the city from flooding. This network is made up of over 600 kilometres of stormwater pipes and tunnels.

Because stormwater is discharged into the city’s streams, harbour and coastal waters, it needs to be as clean as possible. Stormwater can be contaminated by sewage leaking from sewerage pipes, runoff from roads, and by waste such as oil, paint and litter being tipped or washing into drains. The Council has resource consents from the Greater Wellington Regional Council for our stormwater discharges, and we are required to meet the standards set out in these consents. While we do not treat stormwater runoff, we monitor stormwater quality at more than 80 sites, to ensure it meets the required standards.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community50%
Identifiable parts of the community50%

The stormwater system provides significant benefits to individual property owners by protecting their property from flooding. Though these benefits are private, they are not exclusive – all homes and businesses benefit, and the network would have to exist for public good reasons regardless of the individual benefits.

The stormwater system benefits the whole community, both by protecting public property and by protecting public health and safety. The system is a fundamental part of the city’s infrastructure. Without it, Wellington could not operate as a modern, efficient city, and both economic and social well-being would suffer.

Who should pay?
Identifiable parts of the community:
Residential (urban) sector
77.5%
Commercial sector 22.5%

While it is recognised that there is a whole community benefit from this activity, this, along with the benefit received by individuals is best reflected through a targeted rate imposed on the residential (urban) sector and the commercial sector.

Some stormwater runoff may be the direct result of new developments or other land works, or individual actions such as people tipping paint down drains. In these cases, there is a clear “polluter pays” argument for the people or businesses responsible to meet some of the costs. However, identifying those responsible and assessing the costs are difficult.

The Council has decided to exclude rural areas from paying for this activity as this service is not provided to them and as a result they receive no individual benefit. It is therefore appropriate to fund this activity from targeted rates, excluding the rural sector.

The 77.5% residential share is collected through a targeted rate. This rate is funded through a rate per dollar of capital value.

The 22.5% commercial sector share is collected through a targeted rate based on a rate per dollar of capital value.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate (Residential 77.5%, Commercial 22.5%) 100%
General rate0%
Total100%
2.6 Conservation Attractions
Activity 2.6.1: Conservation visitor attractions

The Council funds the Wellington Zoo Trust and the Karori Sanctuary Trust. While each of these organisations has specific goals and approaches to conservation and education they provide attractions for residents and visitors.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community40%
Individuals40%
Identifiable part of the community20%

These facilities benefit the individuals that choose to attend by providing them with a high-quality recreational and educational experience. These benefits are private and exclusive.

These facilities provide significant benefits to the whole community. They play a major conservation role by protecting endangered species and educating the public about conservation and biodiversity issues.

These facilities also attract tourists to the city, contributing to the local economy.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

Each of these trusts operates separately from the Council. User charges take the form of entry fees to visit these facilities, which account for about a significant proportion of their income and reflect the private benefits to people who visit these facilities. These user charges do not appear in the Council’s books.

The Council’s contribution to these facilities reflects the benefits to the community as a whole. For this reason, it is appropriate for the Council’s contribution to be funded from general rates.

These facilities contribute to the Council’s long term goal that the city’s high quality natural environment will attract visitors, residents and visitors.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate100%
Total100%

Economic Development

Growing the regional economy for a prosperous community

The Economic Development Activity is about achieving long-term and sustainable growth in Gross Domestic Product per capita. With a dynamic growing economy, Wellington is able to offer residents prosperity and an outstanding quality of life. Our economic activities include funding tourism promotions and visitor attractions, support for the regional economic development agency, and maintaining relationships with other agencies to foster economic growth.

Operating activities

The funding sources for this area are illustrated in the following table.

Activity Area Activity Grouping Activity   User Fees Other Income Rates General Residential Targeted Commercial Targeted DOWNTOWN TARGETED
Economic Development City promotions and business support 3.1.1 Wellington Regional Economic Development Agency (WREDA) and Venues 0% 0% 100% 20% 0% 30% 50%
    3.1.2 Wellington Convention Centre 0% 0% 100% 60% 0% 0% 40%
    3.1.3 Retail support (free weekend parking) - - - - - - -
    3.1.4 Wellington Economic Initiatives Development Fund (WEID) and Economic Grants 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    3.1.5 Major Projects 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    3.1.6 International relations 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    3.1.7 Business Improvement Districts 0% 0% 100% 0% 0% 100% 0%
Capital Expenditure

The interest and depreciation costs relating to capital expenditure are incorporated in the operating costs of each activity.

Economic development capital expenditure projects generally relate to renewals and are funded through rates funded depreciation and borrowings.

Economic development – activity funding commentary
3.1 City Promotions and Business Support
Activity 3.1.1: WELLINGTON REGIONAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AGENCY (WREDA) AND VENUES

This activity covers the Council’s funding of the Wellington Regional Economic Development Agency (WREDA), the costs of owning and maintaining a number of venue buildings and managing the use of the venues and innovation activities.

WREDA combines the economic development activities of Wellington City Council and the Greater Wellington Regional Council into one organisation.

The aim of a single development agency is to unlock the region’s economic potential by providing:

The Council’s funding will be used to support its activities in the following areas:

Also included in this activity is the expenditure and revenues of promoting and operating the venues (which WREDA undertakes on behalf of Council). This specific activity operates without direct Council funding.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole Community10%
Individuals45%
Identifiable part of the community45%

Individual users of the venues derive considerable benefit from these activities. In most cases users themselves provide the funding for the benefits they derive through ticketing charges. For example, people attending a show or an event that WREDA has brought to the city will generally need to pay an entry fee.

The business sector is a significant beneficiary of this activity –and in particular businesses in the central city area where generally a large proportion of visitors spend most of their time and the majority of business activity occurs.

Residents benefit through the provision of incremental job growth, increasing incomes, an increased range of career choices, and importantly making the city more vibrant and prosperous. Particular commercial sectors, such as education and creative industries, also benefit through elevating their profile and helping build the investor base and potential business partnerships.

The benefits from the WREDA funding are distributed widely across hospitality providers, job seekers, and businesses needing to employ and retain skilled workers. Also, a vibrant and growing economy benefits homeowners by supporting high levels of employment and steady population growth in the City which in turn underpin a stable housing market.

It is estimated that the benefits from the expenditure in these areas accrues to a mix of the business community, the downtown businesses and the whole community.

Who should pay?
Users45%
Identifiable part of the community45%
Whole Community10%

Part of this activity includes the running of the Venues day to day operations, where users fully pay the cost of this activity and there is no rates funding requirement. As the level of venue activity may change on a year to year basis, there is an underlying principle that any costs associated with the promotion or operating of venues is 100% user funded and not funded through rates.

The funding policy excludes the venues operations and is focused on the remaining elements in the activity, and it is recommended that they should be 100% rates funded. This funding is proposed to be spread across the sectors that benefit from the activity. This approach attributes the main benefits to the business community and in particular the businesses in the CBD. There is a small component of funding attributed to general rates covering residential and commercial ratepayers.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate (Commercial) 30%
Targeted rate (Downtown)50%
General rate20%
Total100%
Activity 3.1.2: Wellington Convention Centre

This activity relates to the funding required for the provision of facilities to the City

The policy around the funding of convention centre activities was consulted on as part of the Council’s initial decision to support investment in upgraded convention centre facilities for the city. The policy of 60% general rates and 40% funding through the downtown targeted rate was proposed. This delivers a broad funding split of one third residential sector and two thirds commercial sector in terms of contribution to the cost.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community60%
Identifiable parts of the community40%

The beneficiaries of this activity are predominantly the business sector through expenditure generated in the economy from this activity, potential new expenditure from any growth in this area from investment in upgraded facilities and flow on effects to other indirect supporting services. An improved economy also provides benefits to residents through improved employment opportunities, growth in demand to live and work in the city and the flow on effects that can have to property valuations and business opportunities outside of the downtown area of the city.

It is therefore appropriate for this type of economic development project to be funded, in part, from the general rate to reflect the wider community benefits of an improved economy. Recognising that the general rate covers both residential and commercial ratepayers.

Who should pay?
Identifiable parts of the community40%
Whole community60%

While the hospitality and entertainment sector receives a part of the benefit, the Council’s view is that general ratepayers should also bear a portion of the costs. This is because of the benefit to the community as a whole, through an enhanced cultural offering and stronger economy.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate (Downtown)40%
General rate60%
Total100%
Activity 3.1.3: Retail support (free weekend parking)

The activity used to be funded from the downtown targeted rate in 2017-18 financial year and from 2018-19 onwards it is to be funded entirely from user charges.

Activity 3.1.4: City growth fund (CGW) and economic grants

This activity covers both the organisational support required to deliver the Council’s economic development strategy, as well as the funding mechanism Council provides to support economic growth initiatives. These funds being the City Growth Fund (CGW) and the Economic Development Grant Pool.

The core aim of this activity is to facilitate and support economic growth in the city.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

The groups and organisations that receive grants clearly benefit from this activity. But the community as a whole also benefits. Funding grants are not exclusive, as they are open for anyone to apply. The projects of the successful applicants are expected to have flow on benefits for the wider community.

Individuals and employers are also likely to receive benefits as a result of the programme.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

These activities support economic growth for Wellington which will generally benefit the whole community. Where specific grants are provided the recipients benefit directly from this activity, however seeking to recoup the cost from them would defeat the purpose. The nature of the activities and specific outcomes from funded grant activities are not known at the point of the application and it is therefore appropriate that the funding is spread across the whole community through the general rate.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate100%
Total100%

Activity 3.1.5: Major projects – funding envelope for possible implementation

The Council has a growth agenda that includes a number of major projects to support economic growth. The overall aim of these projects is to realise Wellington’s economic potential by:

This activity provides a funding envelope that would allow major projects to be implemented, should council ultimately decide to proceed with the project.

This activity makes provision for potential funding so that major projects can move to an implementation phase, but only if Council is satisfied that the business case for an investment by Council justifies it.

We have a clear idea of the potential major projects that should be investigated and in broad terms we generally know the order of magnitude of any possible council contribution to these projects. This information has been used to establish the size of the potential funding envelope. However, the Council has made no final commitments to fund the implementation of any of the major projects included under the funding envelope and the final funding requirements may differ.

Such commitments will only be made following the consideration of a business case for each possible project. Each business case will include more precise estimates of the risks and cost of the project, how it would be funded (including the size and nature of any Council contribution), how it will be procured, implemented and managed and what benefits it will create. Only then will the Council be able to consider committing specific funds to a project.

In terms of transparency of future costs, if and when the Council decides to commit funds to a project, that project will be given its own activity class and will be reported on separately.

The major projects that could potentially be funded from the envelope include:

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

The core aim of the major projects is to drive and support economic growth. This is especially important given that many of the people we seek to attract have choices to live in or visit other cities around New Zealand and the world. It is critical Wellington remains vibrant and internationally relevant, and that people coming here have the best possible experience.

Economic growth benefits residents by providing jobs, raising incomes, providing a wider range of career choices, making the city more vibrant, prosperous and supporting a robust property market.

The major projects covered by this activity, if justified based on a future business cases, also have the potential to benefit commercial sectors, such as export education, hospitality, retail, and professional service businesses.

At this stage it is not possible to estimate how benefits of any future Council investment in major projects will be distributed across the community as a whole, the commercial sectors and possibly the Government sector. This is because it is not certain which major projects will be implemented until business cases are completed and decisions are made on whether or not to proceed. It is also possible that some beneficiaries of a major project will contribute to its implementation, in which case the ‘who benefits’ from the Council’s contribution may differ.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

Decisions on who should pay for the Council’s contribution to each major project cannot be made at this stage. Options include use of the downtown targeted rate, the commercial sector generally, and the whole community through general rates. Who should pay depends on a range of factors such as which projects are implemented, where they are located, and what funding is provided from external sources. In the meantime we intend to apply a proxy/default assumption that 100% general rates funding is used.

Ultimately, as each potential project reaches the stage where the Council is completing the process of deciding to proceed to the implementation stage, part of the process will include consideration of what the particular Revenue & Financing policy should be for that specific project and in particular who should pay, based on the comprehensive information available at that stage.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate100%
Total100%
Activity 3.1.6: International relations

The Council works to make Wellington’s economy more competitive and innovative by maintaining relationships internationally to promote the city and the region’s interests.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community50%
Identifiable part of the community50%

The benefits of this activity are split between the community as a whole and institutions that benefit from our efforts. The core aim of this work is to help the city and regional economy grow through international engagement. This benefits residents by providing jobs, raising incomes, providing a wider range of career choices, making the city more prosperous, and supporting a robust property market. Our work in this activity also benefits some business sectors, such as tourism, export, education and creative industries, by boosting their profile and helping build the investor base and potential business partnerships in foreign markets.

Though the benefits to the community are immediate and relate to economic well-being, our efforts to improve the city’s prosperity and in particular any partnerships with the training and educational sector have positive, long-term spin-offs both for the economy and social well-being.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

Though the benefits are split between the community and certain sectors, the Council believes this activity is most appropriately funded from general rates. This is because in most situations it would be impractical to identify the individuals or business that benefit directly from our activity. For example, it would not be possible to identify the direct beneficiaries of a sister city relationship. Furthermore, the Council’s and relationship-building efforts complement the efforts of businesses or institutions themselves.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate100%
Total100%
Activity 3.1.7: Business improvement districts

Under this activity the Council provides a mechanism that allows local businesses to work together as Business Improvement Districts (BIDs). BIDs provide a vehicle for local business-led initiatives that support key city objectives of vibrant centres, business creation and development, and increased employment.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community20%
Identifiable part of the community80%

In terms of funding for BIDs, the commercial interests within each BID are the principal beneficiaries. There are also likely benefits to the community surrounding the BID, since a BID can also improve vibrancy and environs of the public space within a business area.

Who should pay?
Identifiable part of the community100%

Since the beneficiaries of the Business Improvement Districts policy are principally the businesses covered by each individual BID, it is appropriate that they should bear the cost of the policy. This will be done by establishing targeted rates on relevant commercial properties in each area where establishing a BID has the broad support of the business in that area.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate (Commercial)100%
General rate0%
Total100%

Cultural Well-being

Shaping Wellington’s unique identity

The Council supports a wide range of cultural and artistic activity in Wellington. The aim is to foster a lively and creative city that offers rich and varied cultural experiences to residents and visitors. We fund galleries, museums, arts organisations, and art and sculpture in public spaces. We also provide grants to community programmes that foster diversity and encourage people to participate in the arts.

Operating activities

The funding sources for this area are illustrated in the table below.

Activity Area Activity Grouping Activity   User Fees Other Income Rates General Residential Targeted Commercial Targeted DOWNTOWN TARGETED
Cultural Wellbeing Arts and Culture Activities 4.1.1 Galleries and museums (WMT) 0% 0% 100% 75% 0% 0% 25%
    4.1.2 Visitor attractions (Te Papa/Carter Observatory) 0% 0% 100% 30% 0% 0% 70%
    4.1.3 Arts and cultural festivals 0% 10% 90% 90% 0% 0% 0%
    4.1.4 Cultural grants 0% 0% 100% 0% 100% 0% 0%
    4.1.5 Access and support for community arts 0% 10% 90% 90% 0% 0% 0%
    4.1.6 Arts partnerships 0% 25% 75% 75% 0% 0% 0%
    4.1.7 Regional amenities 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
Capital Expenditure

The interest and depreciation costs relating to capital expenditure are incorporated in the operating costs of each activity.

Cultural wellbeing capital expenditure projects are funded through a combination of rates funded depreciation and borrowings.

Cultural well-being – activity commentary
4.1 Arts and Cultural Activities
Activity 4.1.1: Galleries and museums

The Council is the main funder of the Wellington Museums Trust, which operates the Wellington Museum, the City Gallery, Capital E, the Wellington Cable Car Museum, Carter Observatory and the Colonial Cottage Museum. This activity also includes Council’s contribution towards a continued programme of World War I commemorative activities.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community15%
Individuals70%
Identifiable part of the community15%

The individuals who attend the exhibitions and shows at the galleries and museums clearly benefit from their attendance. The exhibitions and shows are a mix of free entry and charged admissions.

The various venues and the associated exhibitions and events are important attractions for visitors and residents alike. The location of these draws people into the downtown area and boosts local businesses, particularly those in the tourism, hospitality and retail sectors.

The museums and galleries funded by this activity also benefit the whole community in many ways. They help make the city vibrant, diverse and interesting, preserve its heritage, form a vital part of Wellington’s image as a creative city, and are a source of civic pride. The exhibitions and events run by the galleries and museums also foster community identity. These benefits are felt even by people who choose not to visit the facilities.

Who should pay?
Whole community75%
Downtown sector25%

The Council funds the museums and galleries to encourage greater participation in the arts and because it believes that high quality cultural amenities add to a vibrant city life and contribute strongly to Wellington as a place to live, work and play. Wellingtonians enjoy access to a wide range of institutions generally without admission charges, this aligns with a strong community bias and the funding policy of Council reflects this with three quarters of the funding being through the general rate. The balance of the funding reflects the benefits to the businesses located in the CBD area and funding through the downtown targeted rate is appropriate to contribute to this activity.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate (Downtown)25%
General rate75%
Total100%
Activity 4.1.2: Visitor attractions (Te Papa)

Through this activity the Council funds attractions and facilities that bring visitors to the city, principally Te Papa.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

How we approach funding this activity

The overarching purpose of this activity is to support visitor attractions. The principal expenditure under this activity is the funding which the Council provides to Te Papa.

External attractions

Who benefits?
Whole community30%
Individuals50%
Identifiable part of the community20%

The direct beneficiaries are those who visit the attractions and attend other events funded through this activity.

Attractions like Te Papa bring visitors to the city and boost the economy, increasing prosperity for residents. They also play vital roles in Wellington’s vibrant cultural life, contributing to its image as New Zealand’s arts and cultural capital.

There are also direct benefits to the businesses located in the downtown area. The attractions funded by this activity bring people into the city, providing customers for hotels, restaurants, retailers and other city businesses. These benefits can be measured through increases in the number of “visitor nights” spent in the city during major events.

Who should pay?
Identifiable parts of the community70%
Whole community30%

Though a group of beneficiaries of this activity are the individuals who choose to visit Te Papa, the Council does not believe it is viable or appropriate to charge them directly for these benefits. Wellingtonians have largely unrestricted access to Te Papa and it is appropriate that they contribute to the funding of this activity through general rates.

However, the downtown sector should continue to fund a significant portion of the cost of this activity as they benefit directly. The venue, events and attraction of Te Papa brings people and visitors into the city. These people provide business for the retailers, and the wider hospitality sector in the city. The projects funded by this activity make major contributions to the Council’s goal that Wellington will be a prime tourist destination.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate (Downtown)70%
General rate30%
Total100%
Activity 4.1.3: Arts and cultural festivals

The Council runs and supports events that encourage Wellingtonians to participate in, learn about and enjoy creative, innovative and diverse arts and cultural experiences. These include Summer City (Gardens’ Magic, Pasifika Festival Te Rā o Waitangi ) the Sky Show, the Diwali festival, Matariki festival, Re-Cut series, Very Welly Christmas and New Year and more, all of which are provided free to the public.

We aim to establish Wellington as a world-leading city of contemporary culture through an integrated programme of investment in, and promotion of, our unique strengths as an arts, events and culture capital.

Community outcome
Who benefits?
Whole community100%

The events are generally run outdoors in public areas making it impossible to identify individual beneficiaries. The benefits, in any case, are not exclusive.

There are generally no limits on the number of people who attend these events and, as the intention is to encourage participation, vibrancy and liveability of the city, it would not be appropriate or acceptable to charge for entry.

The principal benefits are to the community as a whole. These events bring people together, encouraging community identity and cohesion. They help build a sense of pride in the city and add to Wellington’s reputation as an “events capital”. Many events attract people to the city centre, bringing economic benefits.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

Since this activity benefits the community as a whole, the fairest and most effective way to fund the net cost is from general rates.

The Council receives significant sponsorship for this activity from organisations such as the New Zealand Community Trust.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue10%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate90%
Total100%
Activity 4.1.4: Cultural grants

The Council maintains a cultural grants pool to allow community organisations access to funding.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community50%
Individuals and identifiable part of the community50%

The direct beneficiaries of this activity are the individuals and groups who receive funding. The grants provide them with opportunities for artistic and cultural expression. This activity gives individuals the opportunity to participate, even though they may choose not to. Though these benefits are private, they are not exclusive – all residents are able to apply for funding.

Funding cultural initiatives also benefits all city residents by making the city a more vibrant place, enhancing community identity, and contributing to the city’s reputation as New Zealand’s arts and culture capital.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

The purpose of this activity is to add to the mix of cultural events in the city and to encourage participation. Clearly, this means that someone other than the grant recipients has to pay. This activity has no benefit, economic or otherwise, to the commercial sector. Funding is directed to residents, and as such, the Council believes it is appropriate to fund the cost of this activity from rates targeted to the residential sector.

The people and groups who receive funding also contribute their own resources to initiatives that benefit the city’s cultural and social well-being.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate (Residential)100%
General rate0%
Total100%
Activity 4.1.5: Access and support for community arts

This activity addresses a range of community arts projects that the Council supports every year. It also covers a subsidy for non-profit community groups using Wellington Venues, ensuring that they are accessible to a wide range of organisations.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community50%
Individuals50%

Both the individuals that take part in the arts projects and the non-profit groups that make use of the venue subsidy directly benefit from this activity. The activity also benefits the community as a whole. The art projects and groups supported by the subsidy help make the city a vibrant place and foster cultural identity.

Who should pay?
Whole community90%
Identifiable parts of the community10%

The purpose of this activity is to promote cultural diversity and tolerance and, celebrate through the arts, people’s differences to create a sense of identity and of belonging to place. The provision of community art projects eliminates cost as a barrier as does the venue subsidy. Clearly, the cost of this support has to be met elsewhere. The Council believes the cost is most appropriately funded from general rates.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue10%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate90%
Total100%

Activity 4.1.6: Arts partnerships

The Council maintains a number of partnerships with artistic organisations that call Wellington home.

The Council also houses a number of independent artists, art organisations, music studios and a gallery at the Toi Pōneke Arts Centre, which is covered by this activity. This activity also includes the fund which is used to manage the city’s art collection (acquisition, conservation and exhibiting of artworks) and support development and delivery of public art in the city.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community30%
Identifiable part of the community60%
Downtown sector10%

The artists and organisations are clearly direct beneficiary of these partnerships. These benefits are private and exclusive to the extent that the Council’s support cannot be transferred. Toi Pōneke exhibitions are free and accessible to all. Public art is a most accessible form of art and the whole community benefits from it as well as visitors to the city.

The community also benefits from this activity in many ways. Through our support we help ensure these organisations remain viable and based in Wellington. In the example of the orchestra this means the city is home to one of the nation’s foremost arts institutions, which contributes to Wellington’s vibrancy and its image as a creative city. It also means residents have the option of attending concerts on a regular basis, and have far greater access to world-class music than would otherwise be the case.

These partnerships add to the city’s exceptional range of artistic and cultural amenities that cater to all tastes, which in turn add to an environment that fosters a vibrant city life and boosts the local economy.

Who should pay?
Whole community75%
Individuals25%

The overall aim of this activity is to encourage greater engagement and participation in the arts. By supporting these organisations and artists we are ensuring that their work continues and can be experienced by residents and visitors. The Council believes that the majority of the cost is most appropriately funded from general rates.

It is also considered appropriate that those art organisations, artists and users of Toi Pōneke Arts Centre should make a contribution to the cost of the space that they have use over.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue25%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate75%
Total100%

Activity 4.1.7: Regional amenities fund

The Wellington Regional Amenities Fund has been set up to support eligible entities of regional significance with day-to-day operational expenses and new innovative projects that will achieve identified priorities for the region.

The fund is focused on arts, cultural and environmental attractions and events to support and add to the attractiveness and vitality of the Wellington region.

The fund is a partnership between Wellington City Council, Hutt City Council, Upper Hutt City Council, Porirua City Council and Kapiti District Council.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

The direct beneficiaries are those who attend the events and attractions funded through this activity.

The community as a whole benefits in a number of ways. They have the opportunity to enjoy high-quality art, cultural and environment attractions and events that arguably won’t happen without the Council’s support which contributes to social cohesion as they are an opportunity for people to engage in their communities.

These events also create economic benefits to the city as they attract out of region visitors, and contribute millions of dollars to Wellington’s economy (e.g. New Zealand Festival). These bring people into the city, providing customers for city businesses as well as enhancing Wellington City’s place as New Zealand’s arts capital, attracting people to the City to live, work and play.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%
Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate100%
Total100%

Social and Recreation

Building strong, safe and healthy communities for a better quality of life

A city is only as strong as its people. Wellington is built on strong communities. It’s a safe city where people have plenty of opportunities to fulfil their potential and engage with each other. As the city’s biggest provider of recreation facilities and social housing, we aim to promote healthy lifestyles and build strong communities.

Operating activities

The funding sources for this activity area are illustrated in the table below.

Activity Area Activity Grouping Activity   User Fees Other Income Rates General Residential Targeted Commercial Targeted DOWNTOWN TARGETED
Social and Recreation Recreation promotion and support 5.1.1 Swimming Pools 30% 0% 70% 70% 0% 0% 0%
    5.1.2 Sportsfields 20% 0% 80% 80% 0% 0% 0%
    5.1.3 Recreation programmes 5% 0% 95% 95% 0% 0% 0%
    5.1.4 Recreation Centres 25% 0% 75% 75% 0% 0% 0%
    5.1.5 Recreation partnerships 0% 0% 100% 0% 100% 0% 0%
    5.1.6 Playgrounds 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    5.1.7 Marinas 100% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0%
    5.1.8 Golf Course 30% 0% 70% 70% 0% 0% 0%
  Community support 5.2.1 Libraries 5% 0% 95% 95% 0% 0% 0%
    5.2.2 Access support (Leisure Card) 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    5.2.3 Community advocacy 0% 0% 100% 0% 100% 0% 0%
    5.2.4 Grants (Social and Recreation) 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    5.2.5 Housing 100% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0%
    5.2.6 Community centres and halls 5% 0% 95% 0% 95% 0% 0%
  Public health and safety 5.3.1 Burials and cremations 50% 0% 50% 50% 0% 0% 0%
    5.3.2 Public toilets 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    5.3.3 Public health regulations 60% 0% 40% 40% 0% 0% 0%
    5.3.4 City safety 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    5.3.5 WREMO 5% 0% 95% 95% 0% 0% 0%

Capital Expenditure

The interest and depreciation costs relating to capital expenditure are incorporated in the operating costs of each activity.

Social and recreation capital expenditure projects are funded through a combination of grants/subsidies, rates funded depreciation and borrowings.

Social and recreation – activity commentary
5.1 Recreation Promotion and Support
Activity 5.1.1: Swimming pools

This activity covers the cost of providing the Council’s seven swimming pools: Wellington Regional Aquatic Centre (WRAC, Kilbirnie), Freyberg Pool (Oriental Bay), Karori Pool, Keith Spry Pool (Johnsonville), Tawa Pool, Thorndon Pool (summer only) and Khandallah Pool (summer only). They provide a range of recreational opportunities while also helping build a sense of community. They host college, intermediate and primary school swimming events and WRAC also hosts national events.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community20%
Individuals80%

Our swimming pools mainly benefit the people who use them. These people gain access to high-quality facilities for recreation, fitness and relaxation. The benefits are private and exclusive. It is appropriate and acceptable to charge people to use the pools.

However, there are also benefits to the community as a whole. By providing recreation facilities, the pools help increase the overall levels of residents’ health, providing economic and social benefits. They help increase community knowledge of water safety and improve swimming skills. Pools also provide important community focal points as well as health and recreation programmes that bring people together.

Most people regard the pools as important facilities and are prepared to contribute to the costs through their rates. Many people also like to have the option of using the pools even if they do not choose to do so.

Who should pay?
Whole community70%
Individuals30%

While individuals receive the direct benefits, the Council believes it is appropriate for the community as a whole to bear most of the costs of running the city’s swimming pools.

The benefits to the community as a whole and the widespread community support for the facilities justify a significant ratepayer contribution. Though there are other pools in the city, the Council-operated ones are unique for the size and scale of their operations; they are not in direct competition with the private sector and can legitimately be seen as public facilities.

It would not be desirable to raise fees to levels that discouraged people from using them or provided barriers to people on low incomes. Ability to pay issues limits the opportunity to recover the cost of this activity through user charges.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges30%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate70%
Total100%
Activity 5.1.2: Sportsfields

This activity covers the costs of providing the city’s sportsfields, including synthetic artificial surfaces. These provide year-round venues for recreation and competitive sport for people of all ages.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community30%
Individuals35%
Identifiable part of the community35%

The city’s sportsfields provide significant benefits for private individuals and sports clubs. For individuals, they provide facilities for recreation, fitness and relaxation. These benefits are private and partially exclusive. While the fields are booked out at certain times for organised sports such as club football, they are also often available for members of the public to use for informal recreation.

The Council estimates individual people receive about 35% of the benefits from sportsfields and sports clubs receive about the same benefit.

The sportsfields also benefit the community as a whole. By providing recreation facilities they help increase the overall levels of residents’ health, providing economic and social benefits. They also provide important community focal points and recreation programmes that bring people together. Most people recognise them as important facilities and are prepared to contribute to the costs through their rates.

Who should pay?
Whole community80%
Individuals20%

While individuals and sports clubs receive significant direct benefits, the Council believes it is appropriate for the community as a whole to bear some of the costs of operating the city’s sportsfields.

The benefit to the community as a whole and the widespread community support for the facilities justifies a ratepayer contribution. The Council-operated sportsfields are not in competition with private sector providers and can legitimately be seen as public facilities.

It is not always possible or desirable to identify individual users. While sports clubs who book sportsfields can be identified and are charged, many other people use the fields informally and cannot be charged. It would not be desirable to raise fees to levels that discouraged organised sports. Nor would it be desirable to raise fees to levels that provided barriers to people on low incomes taking part in organised sports.

Previously sportsfields were in two separate activities, natural (grass) and synthetic. This was initially driven by the development of artificial turfs (a new service) and the difference in who benefits and who should pay. This has changed overtime as the use of synthetics has integrated with natural fields, which has seen individuals, sporting clubs and the communities utilise the provision of these fields as one service. This has led to a review of these activities, and combining them into one. It has seen changes to the ‘who benefits’ and ‘who should pay’ % to recognise the service as a whole.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges20%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate80%
Total100%
Activity 5.1.3: RECREATION PROGRAMMES

The Council organises programmes and works with stakeholders to deliver programmes to encourage people’s participation in leisure activities. These include organised walks and recreation activities such as Push Play. The key sectors include schools and tertiary providers, environmental groups, sports, clubs and health & well-being providers. This activity covers the cost of providing these services.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community50%
Individuals50%

The Council’s recreation programmes benefit the individuals who take part by providing them with access to recreation and leisure opportunities. The programmes not only promote health but can also boost participants’ overall sense of well-being.

The recreation programmes also benefit the community as a whole. They not only encourage recreation and healthy lifestyles but also operate as community events, helping bring people together. The programmes are targeted at people who may have difficulty organising their own recreation activities.

Who should pay?
Whole community95%
Individuals5%

While individuals receive significant direct benefits, the Council believes it is appropriate for the community as a whole to bear the costs of running these programmes.

The benefits to the community as a whole justify ratepayer funding and it would not be desirable to impose fees as that may discourage participation and provide barriers to people on low incomes taking part.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges5%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate95%
Total100%
Activity 5.1.4: Recreation centres (Including ASB sports centre)

This activity covers the costs of providing the Council recreation centres in Karori, Kilbirnie, Khandallah (Nairnville), Tawa and the ASB Sports Centre. These multi-purpose centres provide a range of recreational opportunities while also helping build a sense of community. They host inter-club competitive leagues and social leagues as well as college, intermediate and primary school sport and activities. The ASB Sports Centre also hosts national and international events.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community20%
Individuals80%

Our recreation centres mainly benefit the people who use them. These people gain access to high-quality facilities for sports, recreation and fitness. These benefits are private and exclusive. It is appropriate and acceptable to charge people to use the centres.

However, there are also benefits to the community as a whole from our provision of recreation centres. These facilities help increase overall levels of residents’ health, providing economic and social benefits. Recreation centres also provide community focal points and recreation programmes that bring people together.

Who should pay?
Whole community75%
Individuals25%

While individuals receive most of the benefits, the Council believes it is appropriate for the community as a whole to bear most of the costs of running the city’s recreation centres.

The benefit to the community and the significant role these centres play in their local areas justifies a significant ratepayer contribution. The accumulated health benefits to the community as a whole from organised and recreational physical activities at their centres also suggests the whole community should bear the majority of the cost.

In addition, it would not be desirable to raise fees to levels that discouraged people from using the centres or provided barriers to people on low incomes. Ability to pay issues limits the opportunity to recover the cost of this activity through user charges.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges25%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate75%
Total100%
Activity 5.1.5: Recreation partnerships

The Council maintains relationships with a number of groups that seek to provide publicly accessible facilities that contribute to both passive and active recreation.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community20%
Individuals80%

The organisations we fund and the people that take part in their programmes also receive direct benefits.

Through the development of recreational partnerships, the Council aims to promote the benefits of sport and recreation to Wellingtonians. This has benefits for residents’ overall levels of health and fitness, which in turn helps economic and social well-being. In addition, by supporting recreation partners, the city receives the economic benefits from having sport and recreation organisations located here.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

While the individuals who choose to access these facilities receive some benefits, the Council believes it is appropriate for the residential sector to bear the costs of our recreation partnerships.

The Council is just one source of funding for its recreation partners. The Council’s contribution represents the public benefits to Wellington residents while the other funding sources represent the private benefits to participants and other organisations.

In this context the benefits to the community clearly outweigh the benefits to individuals. These benefits include healthier lifestyle and overall additions to social wellbeing.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate (Residential)100%
General rate0%
Total100%
Activity 5.1.6: Playgrounds

The Council provides more than 100 neighbourhood playgrounds across the city to give families a safer place to play near home. This activity covers the cost of providing those.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community20%
Individuals80%

The city’s playgrounds provide safe, entertaining places for children to play. The benefits to the children and their families are significant. These benefits are private but not exclusive. It would not be desirable or acceptable to charge people for using playgrounds. The Council’s Play Spaces Policy states that in February 2013, the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child, adopted a General Comment that “children have a right to relax and play, and to join in a wide range of cultural, artistic and other recreational activities.”

The playgrounds also benefit the community as a whole. Playgrounds not only encourage recreation and healthy lifestyles but are also important community focal points. Most people recognise them as important facilities and are prepared to contribute to the costs through their rates.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

While individuals receive significant direct benefits, the Council believes it is appropriate for the community as a whole to bear the costs of running the city’s playgrounds.

Even if the individual beneficiaries could be identified it would not be desirable or acceptable to charge them. The Council believes access to playgrounds is a fundamental right for children.

The benefits to the community as a whole and the widespread community support for the playgrounds justifies ratepayer funding. The Council believes the vast majority of ratepayers would strongly support ratepayer funding of this activity. The playgrounds are public facilities and are not in competition with private sector providers.

Playgrounds make a significant contribution to our goal that Wellington will offer excellent access to a sound social infrastructure that supports high levels of social cohesion.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate100%
Total100%
Activity 5.1.7: Marinas

The Council owns two marinas at Evans Bay and Clyde Quay. These provide private storage and live-aboard facilities for boat owners as well as supporting the recreational activities of a large number of boat owners. This activity covers the cost of providing these services.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Individuals100%

The marinas benefit the people who use them by providing boat sheds for safe storage, moorings and access by marina piers. These benefits are private and exclusive and it is appropriate and acceptable to charge for this service.

Who should pay?
Individuals100%

As identifiable individuals receive private benefits from this activity, it is appropriate for them to meet the costs. The benefits accrue to a narrow sector of the community who use these facilities and the user charges are set at appropriate market rates.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges100%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate0%
Total100%
Activity 5.1.8: Golf Course

This activity covers the costs of providing the city’s municipal golf course

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community20%
Individuals40%
Identifiable parts of the community40%

The city’s municipal golf course in Berhampore provides significant benefits for private individuals and the club itself. For individuals, they provide facilities for recreation, fitness and relaxation. These benefits are private and partially exclusive. While the course is booked out at certain times for organised club competitions, they are also often available for members of the public to use for informal recreation.

The Council estimates individual people and identifiable parts of the community each receive about 40% of the benefits from the golf course.

The golf course also benefits the community as a whole. By providing recreation facilities and open space it helps increase the overall levels of residents’ health, providing social benefits. It also provides an important community focal point.

Who should pay?
Whole community70%
Individuals30%

While individuals receive significant direct benefits, the Council believes it is appropriate for the community as a whole to bear some of the costs of operating the city’s municipal golf course, the main reason being that the golf course is located on Town Belt land with free public access to the area. The user funded portion relates to costs specific to the provision of the Golf Course.

The benefit to the community as a whole and the widespread community support for the facility justifies a ratepayer contribution.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges30%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate70%
Total100%
5.2 Community support
Activity 5.2.1: Libraries

The Council provides a network of libraries including the Central Library, branch libraries, and a popular website.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community20%
Individuals80%

Libraries provide significant benefits to the community as a whole. By providing community support and access to information, the libraries enhance the overall levels of skill, literacy and knowledge in the city, providing economic and social benefits. They act as important digital hotspots and community centres. And they host events and outreach services that bring people together, as well as provide information for migrants and residents about local communities and their history.

The library network adds to residents’ quality of life. The vast majority of Wellingtonians are library members or users - even those who are not regular users generally like to have the option of using library services. Libraries enhance social inclusion and equity of access to services. The branch libraries draw people in to suburban centres bringing vitality to those areas and added custom to local businesses. The Central Library is a significant city landmark which contributes to civic pride.

Libraries also benefit the people who use them. People gain free or low-cost access to books, DVDs, magazines, music and other items. The breadth of the network means that the services it provides are easily accessed by those opting to use it. They use these services for recreation or work/business and to enhance their knowledge, digital literacy and overall well-being right across the age span.

We monitor the use of our libraries. Our indicators suggest that the vast majority of use is for recreational and personal use while up to 30 percent is in part used for work purposes (e.g. job seeking).

Who should pay?
Whole community95%
Individuals5%

While individuals receive many of the direct benefits, the Council believes it is appropriate that most of the cost of running libraries should be met by the wider community. Some user charges will apply for some ‘added’ services and through penalty fines for late returns.

The community benefits as a whole and the widespread community support for the facilities justifies a significant ratepayer contribution. Libraries are among the most popular of Council services and there is strong support for them to be free at the point of use. The libraries are significant public facilities that are generally not in direct competition with the private sector.

It would not be desirable to raise fees to levels that further discouraged people from using the library services or provided barriers to people on low incomes. It would not be desirable or acceptable to Wellingtonians to impose user charges for entry to the libraries or basic book lending services.

Fees are imposed on services that are provided in addition to the core services of the library. For instance modest fees apply for the rental of DVDs. Penalty fees also apply to the late return of items, although this is less relevant as an income stream in an increasingly digital environment.

Since the vast majority of residents are also library users, the application of a uniform targeted rate is considered an effective way of funding the portion of the service that is known to be used by residents.

As it is not possible to distinguish a direct beneficiary of the remaining portion of users, it is considered fair and efficient that a significant portion of the library service be paid for by the whole community.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges5%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate95%
Total100%
Activity 5.2.2: Access support (Leisure Card)

The Council offers discounted access to recreation facilities for holders of our Passport to Leisure card, which is issued free to all residents on low incomes.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community25%
Individuals75%

The Passport to Leisure programme benefits individual participants by giving them affordable access to recreation and leisure opportunities. The programme helps boost participants’ health, fitness and overall well-being.

The programme also benefits the wider community by encouraging healthy lifestyles, which enhances social and economic well-being. It adds to social cohesion by reducing barriers to people on low incomes.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

While the programme mainly benefits individuals the Council believes it is appropriate for the whole community to share the costs.

The programme is aimed at increasing access to recreation and leisure for people on low incomes, by making facilities available at reduced cost. Clearly, this means someone else has to pay. The benefits to all wider community justify the costs being drawn from the general rate.

This programme makes a significant contribution to the Council’s goal that Wellington residents will be more actively engaged in their communities, and in recreation and leisure activities.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate100%
Total100%
Activity 5.2.3: Community advocacy

We encourage people to contribute to their community and participate in city activities. Our City Communities advisors support a wide range of community groups such as senior citizens, Māori, youth, Pacific Islanders, refugees and migrants, and people with disabilities. This work aims to ensure that Wellington’s diverse population is supported and embraced by a tolerant, caring and welcoming community.

We also support the development of community and neighbourhood resilience to ensure communities are connected, vibrant and participatory. Ensure Wellington is a safe, tolerant and healthy city with a strong social infrastructure supporting people. There is an effective city wide welfare and social recovery response for people and animals in an emergency

Community Services take the lead in maintaining and developing partnerships and/or collaborations with community groups, government departments, agencies and sector organisations to improve community wellbeing and to ensure local services meet local needs.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community80%
Individuals20%

The projects funded under this activity benefit all Wellingtonians and communities. The build community and neighbourhood resilience supporting the development of connected, vibrant and participatory communities. The outcomes include ensuring residents being able to access information and resources and participate in communities/activities of choice. These projects also ensure Wellington is a safe, tolerant and healthy city with a strong social infrastructure supporting people. There is an effective city wide welfare and social recovery response for people and animals in an emergency.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

The Council believes it is appropriate to fund the majority of costs for this activity from rates targeted to the residential sector. This is because the benefits accrue to all residents.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate (Residential)100%
General rate0%
Total100%
Activity 5.2.4: Grants (social and recreation)

The Council maintains four grants pools. This activity covers the grants to community groups and organisations whose projects seek to promote recreational activity and overall social wellbeing. The grants process is overseen by a subcommittee of Council.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community50%
Identifiable part of the community50%

The groups and organisations that receive grants clearly benefit from this activity. But the community as a whole also benefits. The grants pool itself is not exclusive - it is open so that anyone has the opportunity to apply. And the projects of the successful applicants will have flow on benefits for the community.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

While grants recipients benefit directly from this activity, seeking to recoup the cost from them would defeat the purpose of the grants pool. Given this and that there are benefits to the community as a whole, the Council believes the fairest and most effective way to fund it is from general rates.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate100%
Total100%
Activity 5.2.5: Housing

The Council owns over 2000 housing units, which we rent to low income people whose housing needs are not met by the private sector. We allocate these homes according to need. Tenants are charged 70 percent of the estimated market rent for their property.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Individuals90%
Whole community 10%

The main beneficiaries of this activity are the tenants, who receive accommodation at below market rent. Their benefits are private and exclusive. While the Council’s rental housing units are aimed at meeting needs that the market does not or cannot meet, to some extent these housing units are in competition with properties provided by private landlords.

However, there are some benefits to the community as a whole. By providing homes for people who otherwise may be unable to afford them, the Council also contributes to community cohesion and may have benefits for public health and safety.

Who should pay?
Individuals100%

As the main beneficiaries, it is appropriate for tenants to pay all of the costs involved in providing community housing. The Council’s current policy is to provide homes at 70 percent of market rent. The City Housing activity is ring-fenced with user charges through rent income funding 100% of operating expenses. The opportunity cost of not obtaining market rentals is not included in this funding analysis.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges100%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate0%
Total100%
Activity 5.2.6: Community centres and halls

This activity supports the delivery of services/activities from community centres and halls. The Council directly delivers services to the community from two halls and five centres. Community organisations are contracted to deliver services from our assets or from non- council assets (22 centres in total) and are funded through three-year contracts (Social Grants). This includes scenarios where Council owns the asset, community owns the asset, and community leases a space for delivery of services.

We also maintain an accommodation assistance fund that provides community groups with access to subsidised office space.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community70%
Individuals and identifiable part of the community30%

The people and groups who use community facilities receive a clear and direct benefit. Though the facilities are available to all, this benefit is private and exclusive – only one group can use a room in a community centre at any one time.

However, the provision of these facilities also has benefits for the wider community. Not only do the facilities help bring people together, the groups that use them often make significant voluntary contributions to community well-being.

Who should pay?
Whole community95%
Individuals and identifiable part of the community5%

These community spaces cover a wide range of facilities forming part of the city’s ‘hard’ social infrastructure that supports community wellbeing. Services and activities developed and delivered locally from these assets help bring people together, improve and strengthen neighbourhoods, community resilience and community safety. These assets are also important gathering points during civil defence emergencies.

Community centres make a significant contribution to community wellbeing by providing an anchor for the local community as well as a city-wide network of community resources. They also provide opportunities for social interaction, events, activities and interest and needs based courses/activities that benefit and respond to the local community needs and interests.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges5%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate (Residential)95%
General rate0%
Total100%
5.3 Public Health and Safety
Activity 5.3.1: Burials and cremations

We operate a crematorium and cemetery at Karori and a cemetery at Makara. We also manage Wellington cemetery records dating back to 1849 available for public viewing. Karori Cemetery is now managed as a closed cemetery for burials, unless interred in an existing family plot. All other burials, including Natural burials are undertaken at Makara Cemetery.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community50%
Identifiable part of the community50%

The cemeteries provide families of the deceased with access to appropriate burial or cremation facilities, allowing them to farewell their loved ones with dignity.

They also provide significant benefits to the community as a whole. These include the public health benefits of ensuring burials and cremations are conducted appropriately, the contribution made by the cemeteries to the city’s heritage, the social benefits of ensuring a wide range of religious and cultural needs are catered for, and the provision of park-like surroundings that benefit not only families of the deceased but also all members of the community. Members of the public expect cemeteries to be properly maintained and accessible to all.

The provision of these services can also be seen to benefit funeral homes and other private businesses in this field.

Who should pay?
Whole community50%
Identifiable part of the community50%

Since the benefits of this activity are split between individuals and the community as a whole, it is appropriate for the costs to also be split.

It should be noted that historically we have been able to recover less than 50 percent of the cost of this activity through user charges. Recent efforts to improve this rate of cost recovery have resulted in some improvements; however due to price elasticity we anticipate that on occasions we will not always meet this target. The remaining costs are appropriately met through general rates.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges50%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate50%
Total100%
Activity 5.3.2: Public toilets

We own and maintain around 100 public toilets throughout the city, located at public places such as parks, playgrounds, sports fields, and shopping centres and in the central business district. This activity includes ensuring they are kept clean and maintained fit for public use.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community60%
Individuals 40%

Council-owned public toilets clearly benefit people who use them. Their provision also benefits everyone who lives and works in the city, by protecting people in public places from the health hazards that would arise if there were no facilities or if facilities were not kept clean.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

Since this activity benefits the whole community, the fairest and most effective way to fund it is through the general rate. Though individuals also benefit, the Council does not believe it would be appropriate to refuse access to people who cannot or will not pay.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate100%
Total100%
Activity 5.3.3: Public health regulations

This activity covers the Council’s role in licensing and monitoring food outlets, licensing liquor outlets, registering and impounding dogs, responding to noise, nuisance, animal and litter complaints, and handling infectious disease investigations and the sorting and processing of dangerous goods.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community75%
Individuals 25%

The Council’s public health work is required under several laws including the Liquor Act, the Resource Management Act and legislation covering hazardous substances. It provides significant benefits to the community as a whole, including protection of the public from hazards such as dangerous chemicals, unsafe food, excessive noise and diseases.

Most of this work involves protecting the public from hazards created or potentially created by identifiable businesses and people. There are benefits to individual businesses which could not legally operate without the Council providing these services, and there are benefits to individuals who have their complaints dealt with or otherwise are protected from a hazard or nuisance.

There are also a number of users who benefit from this activity. Businesses use Council services to monitor and licence their food and liquor outlets. Dog owners benefit from the dog licensing scheme. These users are charged a fee for the benefits they receive.

Who should pay?
Whole community40%
Individuals60%

As this work largely protects the community from harm, it is appropriate that the people or businesses causing the harm should pay. The Council’s public health activities include a range of user charges. For example, licensing and monitoring of food outlets is carried out on a full cost-recovery basis, while user charges recover about 75 percent of animal control costs. Some charges, such as those for liquor licensing, are determined by statute.

For some services, it is not appropriate or possible to charge users. For example, the cost of responding to public complaints about noise, nuisance, litter, animals and other public health issues cannot be recovered as it would not be appropriate to charge those making the complaints and it is not always possible to identify the person or business responsible for the hazard. Overall, user charges recover about 60 percent of the cost of providing these public health services. Accordingly, the Council’s target is to fund 60 percent of the cost of this activity through user charges.

Since the benefits to the community as a whole are significant, it is appropriate for the remaining costs to be funded from general rates.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges60%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate40%
Total100%
Activity 5.3.4: City safety

This activity covers our efforts that are directed at making the city safe and ensuring people feel safe. This includes patrols by city safety officers, closed circuit television monitoring of some inner-city streets, and safety audits which identify necessary improvements such as better street lighting.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

Our city safety initiatives benefit the whole community. By preventing crime, these initiatives have a clear and tangible effect on residents’ well-being. This, in turn, has several other positive spin-offs. Increased safety levels encourage people into the city centre, which makes the city more vibrant and also benefits retailers and other businesses. These efforts also contribute to civic pride by enhancing Wellington’s reputation as a very safe city by national and international standards.

Though individuals benefit from reduced crime, the benefits are felt community-wide and are not exclusive to individuals. As a lot of this work is directed at the inner city it may be argued that there are greater benefits to those who live and work in the city than to residents who do not use the inner city often. However, making the city safer means even those who don’t use the inner city are more likely to feel they have the option to safely access the inner city.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

Since this activity benefits the community as a whole, the fairest and most effective way to fund it is from general rates.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate100%
Total100%
Activity 5.3.5: WELLINGTON REGIONAL EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT OFFICE (WREMO) AND RURAL FIRE

Wellington Regional Emergency Management Office (WREMO) provides a shared service to all the councils within the region. Its role is to help the city prepare for disasters such as earthquakes and floods, and to maintain the Council’s Emergency Operations Centre at a state of readiness for response. WREMO works with government agencies, other councils in the region and international agencies.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community90%
Individuals10%

All residents and businesses benefit from preparation work to alleviate and cope with disasters like storms, floods and earthquakes. WREMO is a focal point for help and gives the entire community some comfort that a ready response is available to cope with disasters and quickly recover.

From time to time, WREMO may receive income in the form of grants from the Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management, and other sources. However, this income varies significantly from year to year. We anticipate 5 percent revenue over the foreseeable future

Rural Fire and Fire Prevention

WCC contributes to the Wellington Rural Fire Authority (WRFA) which incorporates the rural fire capabilities and responsibilities of the Wellington, Kapiti, Upper Hutt, Lower Hutt and Porirua city councils.

Many Wellington properties back onto large areas of vegetation which can present a significant fire risk. The ability to provide fire suppression and prevention mechanisms benefits both the property owner and wider community through enhanced resilience.

Who should pay?
Whole community95%
User5%

While individual property owners benefit from this work in the event of a large vegetation fire, the benefit to the whole community far outweighs this. The Council believes the fairest and most effective way to fund this activity is from general rates.

From time to time, WRFA may receive income in the form of grants from the New Zealand Fire Service Commission via the National Rural Fire Authority. This income varies significantly from year to year. We anticipate 5 percent revenue over the foreseeable future

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges5%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate95%
Total100%

Urban Development

Directing growth and delivering quality

Nestled between harbour and hills, Wellington is a compact and dynamic city. We aim to preserve its special character, making sure developments are safe and in harmony with the environment. Our work in this area includes urban planning, building and development regulation, heritage protection and the development of public spaces.

Operating activities

With the exception of regulatory services, the majority of activities in this area are funded by the whole community via the General Rate. The funding sources are illustrated in the table below.

Activity Area Activity Grouping Activity   User Fees Other Income Rates General Residential Targeted Commercial Targeted DOWNTOWN TARGETED
Urban Development Urban planning, heritage and public spaces development 6.1.1 Urban planning and policy 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    6.1.2 Waterfront development 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    6.1.3 Public spaces and centres development 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    6.1.4 Built heritage development 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    6.1.5 Housing development 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
  Building and development control 6.2.1 Building control and facilitation 65% 0% 35% 35% 0% 0% 0%
    6.2.2 Development control and facilitation 50% 0% 50% 50% 0% 0% 0%
    6.2.3 Earthquake risk mitigation - built environment 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    6.2.4 Regulator - Building Control and Facilitation Weathertight Homes 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
Capital Expenditure

The interest and depreciation costs relating to capital expenditure are incorporated in the operating costs of each activity.

Urban development capital expenditure projects are funded through a combination of rates funded depreciation and borrowings.

Urban development – activity funding commentary
6.1 Urban Planning, Heritage and Public Spaces Development
Activity 6.1.1: Urban planning and policy

The Council wants to ensure the city grows in ways that encourage high-quality development and produce the best long-term result for everyone. To do this, we will use appropriate controls to guide development, particularly in key areas of the city. This includes guiding development in the northern part of the city where rapid growth is expected in the coming years. Implementing and updating the District Plan to respond to key issues such as resilience and facilitate growth are high priorities.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

Urban planning ensures the city grows in a controlled way that is environmentally sustainable, enhances community cohesion, and encourages high-quality developments. While the Northern Growth Management Framework is obviously specific to that area, the benefits of improved infrastructure and co-ordinated growth will be felt city-wide.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

The Council seeks to build stronger communities through funding this activity. Our aim is to make Wellington even more liveable – making it a great place to be by offering a variety of places to live, work and play within a high quality public environment. Since the community as a whole benefits from this work, it is appropriate for general ratepayers to bear the costs.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate100%
Total100%
Activity 6.1.2: Waterfront development

The Wellington waterfront is a key area of the city. We oversee its development in line with a guiding policy, the Wellington Waterfront Framework. Management of waterfront development is carried out by a Council controlled organisation, Wellington Waterfront Limited.

Our role includes preparing an annual work plan that outlines short and long- term development proposals for the waterfront and funding the operations of Wellington Waterfront Limited.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

This work benefits the whole community by making the city more attractive and vibrant, and providing valuable recreation opportunities. Through development of public spaces that complement the natural beauty of the waterfront, the image and the “sense of place” that people have for the city is enhanced. Waterfront development attracts people into the city, supporting social cohesion and aiding the economy.

While the direct beneficiaries are mainly people who choose to visit the waterfront, these benefits are not exclusive. When one person visits Queen’s Wharf or Frank Kitts Park, that doesn’t stop anyone else from being in the area too. Nor would it be practical or acceptable to identify users of the waterfront and require them to pay. Similarly, though people living in the inner city benefit from better access to the waterfront, this is outweighed by the benefits to all people in the city.

The operational spending for this activity covers planning and public consultation. All residents benefit from the opportunity to have their views heard.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

Since the community as a whole benefits from this work, it is appropriate for general ratepayers to bear the costs.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate100%
Total100%
Activity 6.1.3: Public spaces and centres development

We fund work to develop the street environments, urban parks and squares, and other public areas in the city and suburban centres. We aim to make these areas safe, accessible and attractive, with plenty of green space. This activity includes facilitation of the city’s public artworks and consultation, planning and co-ordination of suburban centre upgrades.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

This activity benefits the whole community by enhancing the urban environment, making the city safer and contributing to the vibrancy of Wellington. All residents and visitors to the city are able to enjoy its public spaces. While those who use city or suburban shopping areas, urban parks, squares and other public areas receive direct benefits, these benefits are not exclusive and it would not be desirable or acceptable to require people to pay for them directly. Similarly, though individual suburbs benefit from work on suburban centres, these upgrades are not restricted to particular areas of the city – upgrades either have been carried out recently or are timetabled across many suburbs.

As well as enhancing the environment, development of city and suburban centres benefits the economy and enhances people’s pride in the city.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

While centre development provides a clear benefit to geographical suburban areas, targeted rates to fund these activities are not considered appropriate given the broad benefit to the community as a whole, and that centre upgrades are scheduled to occur throughout the city. The public good benefit over-rides any direct benefit to individual communities. However, if a suburban community asks for a higher standard of upgrade, or an earlier timeline than the Council has planned, the Council may consider imposing a targeted rate.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate100%
Total100%
Activity 6.1.4: Built heritage development

In order to promote Wellington as a place that celebrates its landmarks and heritage, we work to help protect and restore the city’s heritage assets.

The District Plan ensures heritage buildings, trees, monuments and other assets, and sites of significance to tangata whenua, are recognised and that controls are in place to manage changes to or removal of these assets.

Our work in this area includes maintaining an inventory of heritage sites, restoring significant heritage buildings in public ownership and upgrading heritage sites.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

This activity benefits the whole community by protecting the city’s heritage. Preservation of city landmarks enhances the city’s image, makes it more attractive, and contributes to people’s sense of history and community pride. The community also benefits from enhancement of publicly-owned heritage assets.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

Since the community as a whole benefits from this work, it is appropriate for general ratepayers to bear the costs.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate100%
Total100%
Activity 6.1.5: Housing development

Council has developed a Housing Strategy which aims to ensure that all Wellingtonians are well housed with four key outcomes met:

Delivery of this strategy would include activities such as:

As part of the wider housing strategy and work programme, Council would work to identify appropriate Council assets which can be disposed of so that the proceeds can be utilised and directed toward new housing developments that better meet the needs of the community.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community50%
Individuals50%

Work funded by this activity would benefit individuals who currently cannot access quality affordable housing. Developments arising from this activity would allow more affordable housing to be available on a greater scale than is currently the case.

However the community as a whole also benefits through improving the overall availability and quality of the city’s housing stock.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

Council is seeking to ensure that all Wellingtonians are well housed. As much of the work in this activity is strategic in nature with broadly delivered benefits through a quality framework it is appropriate for general rate payers to bear the cost.

While the private market does provide housing, this activity seeks to encourage development which would not occur without Council’s support. This activity is therefore Council’s input and support over and above the costs incurred by the private market and to seek to recoup the cost would defeat the purpose of Council support.

Given this and the benefits to the community as a whole, the fairest and most effective way to fund it is from general rates.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate0%
General rate100%
Total100%
6.2 Building and Development Control
Activity 6.2.1: Building control and facilitation

The Council has a statutory responsibility under the Building Act and the Resource Management Act to control building developments. This includes ensuring buildings are safe and sanitary, and do not threaten environmental quality or public health.

Work includes issuing and monitoring building consents - we have building guidelines to make sure buildings meet the required standards. The Fencing of Swimming Pools Act 1987 has been repealed and its functions now fit under Building Act 2004. The responsibilities under the Building Act ensure there is protection in place for unsupervised children of 5 years old or younger gaining access to private residential swimming pools.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community20%
Individuals80%

Our building control work benefits private individuals – the people and companies that build or redevelop homes, offices and other buildings. Our work ensures these buildings are safe and meet legal requirements. These benefits apply to buildings which, in almost all cases, are for private and exclusive use. The people who use our building consent services are clearly identifiable and can be stopped from using the service if they refuse to pay.

Similarly, the beneficiaries of our efforts to ensure swimming pools are adequately fenced are private individuals – those people who own and use private swimming pools and those who are kept safe because pools are fenced.

Who should pay?
Individuals65%
Whole community35%

While individuals receive the benefits of our building control work, we are constrained in our ability to recover costs from those individuals. User charges for some activities are set by law or regulation. For some activities, the law prevents us from charging at all.

In addition, to meet all the costs of building consents through user charges we would need to raise the charges to a level that may create an incentive for homeowners to avoid the consent process and carry out illegal building work.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges65%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate35%
Total100%
Activity 6.2.2: Development control and facilitation

The Council has a statutory responsibility under the Resource Management Act to ensure land and other resources are used sustainably. The District Plan, adopted in 2001 after public consultation, contains specific policies relating to land and resource use in the city. We administer the District Plan, regulating developments to ensure they are safe, sustainable and meet public expectations. Specific activities, including issuing resource consents, monitoring compliance and dealing with complaints about environmental matters, are covered by this activity.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community40%
Individuals60%

The main beneficiaries of this work are the individual people and businesses involved in land subdivision and development or use of other resources. This work helps ensure the developments are safe, sustainable and meet legal obligations.

There is also a significant public benefit. By controlling the safety and environmental effects of developments, we help prevent harm to members of the public both now and in the future.

Who should pay?
Whole community50%
Individuals50%

While individuals receive an estimated 60 percent of the benefit from the Council’s development control work, our ability to recover costs from those individuals is limited. User charges for some activities are set by law or regulation. For some activities, the law prevents us from charging at all. In addition, while individuals causing damage to the environment should bear the costs of dealing with their actions, it is not always possible to identify them.

To meet 60 percent of the costs of resource consents through user charges would require raising them to a level that may create a disincentive for growth and development of the city, potentially harming the economy.

These factors mean that, historically, we have been able to recover only about a third of the cost of this activity through user charges.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges50%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate50%
Total100%
Activity 6.2.3: Earthquake risk mitigation – built environment

Earthquake Resilience is a key focus for Wellington City Council. The Council has a statutory responsibility under the Building Act to mitigate the risks that earthquakes may have on structures. This activity covers that work and also the contribution that the Council may make to localised earthquake assessments.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate100%
Total100%
Activity 6.2.4: building Control and facilitiation – weathertiGht homes
Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

Resolving weathertight homes issues provides benefits to the Community as a whole.  Through no fault of their own, individuals are stuck with leaky homes which can, in the worst circumstances, affect the health and well-being of those living there.  Ensuring homes get fixed improves the health and well-being of individuals and reduces the call on the Community’s health services.  It also ensures the quality of housing stock available to residents in the City.

It is not considered that the actions or inactions of any individuals or group have directly contributed to the requirement to address the resolution of weathertight homes issues.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

Since the activity benefits the community as a whole, the fairest and most effective way to ultimately fund it is from general rates.  The quantum of the liability required to be funded will likely necessitate the use of borrowings to spread the cost and ensure that the affordability of any rates funding requirement is considered and managed.

Given the specific nature of the cost it is important that any borrowing and rate funding associated with this activity are transparent and that these funds are effectively ring fenced and only used for the specific purpose of settling weathertight homes claims and the associated interest costs from any related borrowings.  There are minimal costs associated with a decision to fund this activity distinctly from other activities.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate100%
Total100%

Transport

Providing quality connections

We’re responsible for Wellington’s extensive transport network, and for planning for the city’s future transport needs. We see a high-quality transport system as critical to the city’s economy and quality of life. Our transport activities include looking after hundreds of kilometres of city roads, as well as accessways, footpaths, cycleways, parking facilities, traffic signs and signals, street lighting and pedestrian crossings. We also manage parking areas and have an ongoing programme of safety promotion.

Operating activities

The funding sources for this area are illustrated in the table below.

Activity Area Activity Grouping Activity   User Fees Other Income Rates General Residential Targeted Commercial Targeted DOWNTOWN TARGETED
Transport Transport 7.1.1 Transport planning 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    7.1.2 Vehicle network 0% 5% 95% 95% 0% 0% 0%
    7.1.3 Cycle network 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    7.1.4 Passenger transport network 0% 65% 35% 35% 0% 0% 0%
    7.1.5 Pedestrian network 0% 0% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0%
    7.1.6 Network-wide control and management 15% 15% 70% 70% 0% 0% 0%
    7.1.7 Road safety 0% 20% 80% 80% 0% 0% 0%
  Parking 7.2.1 Parking 100% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0%
Capital Expenditure

The interest and depreciation costs relating to capital expenditure are incorporated in the operating costs of each activity.

Transport capital expenditure projects are funded through a combination of NZTA subsidies, rates funded depreciation and borrowings.

Transport – activity funding commentary
7.1 Transport
Activity 7.1.1: Transport planning

The mixed modes and changing demands on transportation means that transportation planning becomes increasingly important. The Council’s work in this area is closely linked to the work that we carry out under urban development. We also incorporate travel demand management planning as a component part of our overall transport and urban planning work.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

This activity is of benefit to the whole community.

A well planned transportation network plays an important part in making the city more liveable. It provides for the efficient movement of freight and it allows for people to be better connected, aiding social cohesion.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%
Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate100%
Total100%
Activity 7.1.2: Vehicle network

We manage a vehicle network that includes 699 kilometres of urban and rural roads, 1,236 kilometres of kerbs and channels, 76 bridges and large culverts and four tunnels, as well as all related pavements and service lanes. As steward of the roads in a hilly harbour city, we are also responsible for maintaining more than 3,200 retaining walls, sea walls and accessway walls that support and protect transport corridors. Network maintenance activities include planned work as well as responding to unexpected events, such as removing debris and returning roads to service after storms or slips.

Port access is also part of our vehicle network management activities, as the efficient movement of freight to and from the port is an important contributor to the city’s economy. We work with port authorities to find appropriate solutions to the movement of freight which minimise negative impacts for other users of the vehicle network.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

The city’s vehicle network is a vital public asset. Roads are available for all residents and visitors to use. It benefits all residents by providing the means for safe, efficient travel. This benefits the economy and is also important for social reasons. An efficient vehicle network allows people to travel to work, visit friends and family, and get their children to school.

This ‘public good’ aspect of the vehicle network is reflected in the fact that Council’s responsibility for providing and maintaining the network is enshrined in law. Under the current law, we cannot charge anyone for using it. The vehicle network is not in competition with any privately-provided alternative.

The direct beneficiaries of the vehicle network are road users. This includes everyone who drives private cars, as well as businesses that use roads for commercial purposes such as transporting goods. There are also many indirect beneficiaries, including people who do not often leave their homes but receive road-based services like meals on wheels or mail deliveries.

Who should pay?
Whole community95%
Other5%

It could be argued that the commercial sector receives a higher direct benefit than city residents, and that heavy commercial vehicles also cause more wear and tear on the roading network than private cars. However, it’s not possible to reasonably assess how much cost and benefit is directly attributable to different groups of road users, and Council currently has no legal means to impose direct costs on road users.

This means that because the community as a whole benefits, the fairest approach is to fund costs in this activity from general rates.

However, a small percentage of our costs are actually funded by the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) through National Land Transport Fund (NLTF) subsidies, which pass on funding from fuel taxes gathered by Central Government. The amount subsidised by NZTA varies from year to year depending on the work programme (which affects eligibility for subsidy) and the amount of funding that NZTA has made available for qualifying activities. This income is leveraged to reduce the rates funding requirement for the vehicle network activity.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue5%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate95%
Total100%
Activity 7.1.3: Cycle network

Council has committed to an extensive cycleways improvement programme to improve access for people on bikes in the city and suburbs. Over the past 15 years, six out of ten new commuters have chosen to walk or cycle to work. With as many as 50,000 to 80,000 additional people expected to settle in Wellington by 2043, continuing this trend is vital if we want to minimise the need for costly road capacity improvements.

Cycleways require regular maintenance to remain safe – surfaces need to be smooth, lanes need to be clearly marked, and cycle stands and maintenance stations need to be provided at appropriate parking points. Maintaining cycleways to a high standard is critical if we want more people to see cycling as a safe and attractive transport choice.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

Cycleways are available to all and provide significant benefits to the whole community, supporting the health, wellbeing and prosperity of the people who live, work, play and invest in our city.

The direct beneficiaries of the city’s cycleways are the people who use them. This includes cyclists and pedestrians who use the cycleways as de facto walkways. Cycleways provide these users with both transport and recreational opportunities. There are also many indirect beneficiaries, because as part of a multi-model transport network, cycleways contribute towards reducing the amount of vehicle traffic, which in turn makes the city’s roads safer and less congested.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

Because the community as a whole benefits from our provision of the cycleway network, the fairest approach is to fund costs in this activity from general rates.

Identifying and charging individual users would be both inefficient and impractical. It’s likely that imposing a user charge would discourage people from using cycleways, meaning that the health, sustainability and transport benefits of cycleways would be lost.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate100%
Total100%
Activity 7.1.4: Passenger transport network

While Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) is responsible for the provision of public transport services, Council is committed to playing a key role in supporting the city’s public transport network. Our aim is to encourage greater use of the bus and rail networks, as this delivers social and sustainability benefits, including improved energy efficiency and reduced pollution.

The Lambton Quay Bus Interchange is owned and operated by Council (this is because legislation in force at the time prevented GWRC from owning this asset). GWRC contributes a capped amount of funding towards the operation and maintenance of the Bus Interchange. Subsidised expenditure includes utilities costs, cleaning, maintenance and security services.

Council provides and maintains the special bus lane markings on roads throughout the city. Council has also committed to a significant programme of local bus priority capex improvements (which will affect this activity through higher interest charges).

Council was previously responsible for managing the cleaning and maintenance of bus shelters, bus stops and bus signs, with costs being reimbursed by GWRC. Responsibility for this work was transitioned across to GWRC in 2016, at which time we removed both the expenditure and the income (GWRC cost recoveries) from the LTP. This change had a net nil impact on the amount of rates funding required for this activity.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

The city’s public transport network is a vital public asset which is available for all residents and visitors to use. It benefits the whole community by providing the means for safe, efficient travel. This benefits the economy and is also important for social reasons. An efficient public transport network allows people to travel to work, visit friends and family, and get their children to school.

While individual users of public transport receive the most direct benefit, there are also many indirect beneficiaries. As part of a multi-model transport network, public transport services contribute towards reducing the amount of vehicle traffic, which in turn makes the city’s roads safer and less congested. Encouraging the use of public transport also has wider sustainability benefits for the community, including improved energy efficiency and reduced pollution.

Who should pay?
Whole community35%
Other65%

Because the community as a whole benefits, the fairest approach is to fund costs in this activity from general rates.

However, Council receives a share of the revenue generated from Adshel advertising on bus shelters and pedestrian canopies in the city. This income is leveraged to reduce the rates funding requirement for the passenger transport activity.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue65%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate35%
Total100%
Activity 7.1.5: Pedestrian network

Over the past 15 years, six out of ten new commuters have chosen to walk or cycle to work. With as many as 50,000 to 80,000 additional people expected to settle in Wellington by 2043, continuing this trend is vital if we want to minimise the need for costly road capacity improvements.

Maintaining a safe and connected pedestrian network is an important part of our transport strategy. We maintain more than 893 kilometres of footpaths as well as pedestrian (street) furniture such as canopies, seats, bollards and fountains.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

The pedestrian network is available to all and provides significant benefits to the whole community, supporting the health, wellbeing and prosperity of the people who live, work, play and invest in our city.

The direct beneficiaries of the city’s pedestrian network are the people who use them. Footpaths and access ways provide these users with both transport and recreational opportunities. There are also many indirect beneficiaries, because as part of a multi-modal transport network, the pedestrian network contributes towards reducing the amount of vehicle traffic, which in turn makes the city’s roads safer and less congested.

Who should pay?
Whole community100%

Because the community as a whole benefits from our provision of the pedestrian network, the fairest approach is to fund costs in this activity from general rates.

Identifying and charging individual users would be both inefficient and impractical. It’s likely that imposing a user charge would discourage people from using footpaths and accessways, meaning that the health, sustainability and transport benefits of cycleways would be lost.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate100%
Total100%
Activity 7.1.6: Network-wide control and management

Network management is crucial in a modern, efficient vehicle network.

Our traffic control system includes 117 sets of traffic lights, closed circuit television cameras and a central traffic computer system which allows us to optimise traffic flows to ensure the safe, efficient and balanced flow of traffic. This minimises safety risks, congestion, delays and pollution.

Road markings and signs provide information and guidance to drivers and assist with traffic flow, traffic control and traffic safety, especially at night and in poor weather conditions. This significantly enhances safety for all users of our transport networks, and also supports efficient parking management.

Other network management activities include the administration of National legislation and Council’s bylaws and policies relating to the non-ordinary, temporary use of the transport network.

We manage Corridor Access Requests (around 6,000 per year) for works in the Transport Corridor (now mainly utility works approvals under the National Code of Practice for Utility Access to Transport Corridors), as well as monitoring, inspecting and auditing these works to ensure compliance during the work and reinstatement.

We also review and approve Temporary Traffic Management Plans (around 1,000 per year), as well as managing delegations for self-approvals, which are administered in line with NATA’s Code of Practice for Temporary Traffic Management.

Other network management activities include issuing and managing licences and permits for other uses of the transport network, such as for construction loading zones, trading, sandwich boards, events, busking, street appeals, temporary signage and overweight vehicles.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcomes:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

Traffic control, signs and marking work allows for better traffic flows. Controlling traffic flows allows us to manage the diverse and competing demands of motorists, pedestrians, cyclists and public transport users. It improves the safety and efficiency of our transport system, which delivers social and commercial benefits by improving connections between communities and the city.

Network management activities optimise accessibility and utilisation of the transport network for a wide variety of activities and users, while minimising the adverse effects on other users of the network. This enables the city to remain internationally competitive by accommodating world class activities and events and promoting vibrancy, innovation and ongoing development of the city and its infrastructure.

Who should pay?
Whole community70%
User charges15%
Other15%

The cost of administering network management activities such as Corridor Access Requests, Temporary Traffic Management Plans, and other approvals or licences for uses of the transport network is largely recovered through user charges. Note that we are constrained by legislation as to what costs we are able to recover for this work. Also note that both the costs and the revenue for this work is a relatively small percentage of the total cost for the network control activity.

Because the community as a whole benefits, the fairest approach is to fund the remaining costs in this activity from general rates.

However, a small percentage of our costs are actually funded by the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) through National Land Transport Fund (NLTF) subsidies, which pass on funding from fuel taxes gathered by Central Government. The amount subsidised by NZTA varies from year to year depending on the work programme (which affects eligibility for subsidy) and the amount of funding that NZTA has made available for qualifying activities. This income is leveraged to reduce the rates funding requirement for the network control activity.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges15%
Other revenue15%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate70%
Total100%
Activity 7.1.7: Road safety

Delivering a safe road network is a fundamental goal of our Transport strategy. Providing and maintaining safety assets such as street lighting, safety fences and rails, as well as leading road education and promotion activities, significantly enhances safety for all users of our transport networks.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community100%

Work funded by this activity reduces accidents and promotes the safety of the transport network. The benefits are felt by the whole community, including road users (private and commercial), pedestrians, cyclists, residents and tourists.

Street and pathway lighting improves safety and personal security through increased visibility. Safety fences and rails protect pedestrians from lateral falls of more than 1 metre, provide assistance to pedestrians negotiating hilly paths, highlight hazards for drivers, and act as protective barriers to ensure the safe and convenient use of the transport network.

Who should pay?
Whole community80%
Other20%

Because the community as a whole benefits, the fairest approach is to fund costs in this activity from general rates.

However, a small percentage of our costs are actually funded by the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) through National Land Transport Fund (NLTF) subsidies, which pass on funding from fuel taxes gathered by Central Government. The amount subsidised by NZTA varies from year to year depending on the work programme (which affects eligibility for subsidy) and the amount of funding that NZTA has made available for qualifying activities. This income is leveraged to reduce the rates funding requirement for the road safety activity.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges0%
Other revenue20%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate80%
Total100%
7.2 Parking
Activity 7.2.1: Parking

The Council provides short-term, metered roadside car parks in the city centre. We aim to have a high turnover of these parks. We also operate coupon and resident parking in areas to give city dwellers on the fringe of the central business district some relief from the daily influx of commuters.

Community outcome

This activity contributes towards the following outcome:

Who benefits?
Whole community25%
Individuals75%

The direct beneficiaries of the Council’s parking services are clearly those people who use car parks. These benefits are private and exclusive. Two people cannot use the same car park at the same time and it is appropriate to charge people for using car parks. The Council’s parking services operate in competition with other private sector providers.

It might also be argued that retailers benefit directly from the Council’s provision of car parks. However, there is no practical way of assessing whether people are using car parks to go shopping or for other purposes such as recreation.

The community as a whole also receives benefits from the Council’s parking activities. On-street car parking is time limited to encourage a high turnover of parks, as this helps bring people into the city and benefits the commercial sector. All ratepayers benefit from the income derived from this activity, as it offsets the cost of providing the vehicle network.

Who should pay?
Individuals100%

Since the principal benefit from the Council’s parking services is to identifiable individuals it is appropriate for them to bear the costs through user charges.

While it might be argued general ratepayers should meet 25 percent of the costs, reflecting the benefit to the community as a whole, this would be inappropriate for a number of reasons. First, the level of demand for car parks suggests people using them believe they represent good value. As the principal benefit is to these individuals, it is appropriate to set user charges at a level the market will accept. Second, the Council’s parking services operate in competition with private car park operators and setting lower fees would unfairly disadvantage those operators and potentially reduce the supply of off-street parking in the city. Third, the individuals using car parking spaces also benefit through being able to use ratepayer-funded roads and footpaths, and their contribution through parking fees offsets the cost of providing these services.

This activity recovers significantly more revenue, through enforcement and meter charges than the operating costs. The Council believes this is appropriate as it supports our transport and retail policies. These policies aim to improve access to on-street parking and increase turnover of parking.

Our funding targets: operating expenses
User charges100%
Other revenue0%
Targeted rate 0%
General rate0%
Total100%