At the extra ordinary meeting of Ōpōtiki District Council last week (Friday 30 June), Council adopted the 2017-18 Annual Plan.
Annual Plans support long term plans and provide the basis for setting and assessing rates for each year. In accordance with the amendments to the Local Government Act in 2014, Council has been able to save ratepayers the cost of conducting a full consultation process this year as there are no significant changes from the content of the Long Term Plan.
Based on the Annual Plan budgets, the annual plan will see a rates rise of 3.65%, well below the forecast 6.3% in the Long Term Plan.
Some of the highlights in the Annual Plan include funds set aside for Hukutaia Domain's Centenary Project next year, new playground equipment, and works on the Tirohanga Military Track section of the cycleway.
You can read a full copy of the document on our Annual Plans page.
Ōpōtiki District Council is currently considering the future of a section of land on the corner of Ford and Church Streets that includes the Rose Gardens, children's playground, pre-school, a historic building and a water fountain.
Twenty thousand dollars has been set aside in the 2017/18 Annual Plan to consider alternative layouts that allow better use of the site for wider public amenity.
"We have a unique site close to the centre of town and it is well-used by the community. We have the opportunity to make the most of this space for the best use. For example, we have a strong demand for a good quality children's playground in town, additional greenspace and a recreational area.
"We have set aside some money in the Annual Plan to look into this further so that we can get some ideas for the best use of this site. It will be a chance to get professional input and thoughts from the wider community," Mr Houghton said.
The site has been home to many public amenities over the years including the Ōpōtiki Women's Bowling Club before it became the Rose Gardens more recently.