I hereby give notice that an ordinary meeting of the Budget Committee will be held on:

 

Date:                      

Time:

Meeting Room:

Venue:

 

Monday, 26 May 2014

3.00pm

Reception Lounge
Auckland Town Hall
301-305 Queen Street
Auckland

 

Budget Committee

 

OPEN ADDENDUM AGENDA

 

 

 

MEMBERSHIP

 

Chairperson

Mayor Len Brown, JP

 

Deputy Chairperson

Cr Penny Webster

 

Members

Cr Anae Arthur Anae

Cr Calum Penrose

 

Cr Cameron Brewer

Cr Dick Quax

 

Cr Dr Cathy Casey

Cr Sharon Stewart, QSM

 

Cr Bill Cashmore

Member David Taipari

 

Cr Ross Clow

Member John Tamihere

 

Cr Linda Cooper, JP

Cr Sir John Walker, KNZM, CBE

 

Cr Chris Darby

Cr Wayne Walker

 

Cr Alf Filipaina

Cr John Watson

 

Cr Hon Christine Fletcher, QSO

Cr George Wood, CNZM

 

Cr Penny Hulse

 

 

Cr Denise Krum

 

 

Cr Mike Lee

 

 

(Quorum 11 members)

 

 

 

Mike Giddey

Democracy Advisor

 

22 May 2014

 

Contact Telephone: (09) 307 7565

Email: mike.giddey@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz

Website: www.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz

 

 

 


Budget Committee

26 May 2014

 

 

ITEM   TABLE OF CONTENTS                                                                                        PAGE

  

9          Adoption of amendments to the Local Boards Funding Policy                               5   

 

    


Budget Committee

26 May 2014

 

 

Adoption of amendments to the Local Boards Funding Policy

 

File No.: CP2014/10539

 

  

 

Purpose

1.       This report advises the Budget Committee on the adoption for public consultation of a Statement of Proposal to amend the Local boards funding policy and the Long-term Plan 2012-2022, including a preferred option.

Executive summary

2.       The council is required to have a Local boards funding policy that provides each local board with an equitable capacity to enhance well-being.  This review is an opportunity to adopt a policy that is fairer than the status quo which is based on former councils’ decisions.

3.       In February and March workshops were held with local boards on the Local boards funding policy options agreed by the Governing Body in February. The policy proposed splitting local activities into two categories with different funding mechanisms for each. The key issues considered by the review in determining funding options have been the:

·     fair distribution of services across local boards

·     alignment of decision making on service levels and expenditure with decision making on funding.

4.       All local boards have distinguishing characteristics.  However, Great Barrier Island is the only local board that is significantly impacted by all the options for funding locally driven initiatives. Accordingly it is recommended that they are treated separately and their funding set by the Governing Body in the planning process. Waiheke Island is also an outlier in terms of impact under the policy options, although not to the same degree.

Funding local asset based services

5.       The policy proposed continuing to fund local asset based services ($299m in 2013/2014), such as swimming pools and parks, from the general rate. Local boards have an advocacy role in Governing Body decisions on local asset based services and make decisions within parameters set by the Governing Body. There was general agreement from local boards on this funding approach. Local boards also supported the service level equity review for local asset based services. However, they raised the following key issues with local services:

·    concern that the total funding of $332m (in 2013/2014) for local activities was not sufficient to fully discharge their role

·    desire for the scope of their role under the allocation of decision making to be wider

·    request that the method for allocating overheads is reviewed and improved.

 

6.       The Governing Body will consider these issues in development of the Long-term Plan 2015-2025. There will be engagement with local boards when these issues are considered and they will have an advocacy role in the decision making process.

Funding locally driven initiatives

7.       The key decision for the review is to determine how to fund locally driven initiatives ($32m in 2013/2014), such as events and community programmes, where local boards currently have decision making on how a level of budget set by the Governing Body is spent within their area. Currently these budgets are not distributed fairly across all local boards (except in so far as the current policy required no change to budgets inherited from prior councils). When considering the funding method for locally driven initiatives the key issue is whether the Governing Body or local boards should make decisions on the level of expenditure and rates. The funding options proposed were:

1.   Local rate:  where local boards determine size of their budget, service levels and who pays from their local board area

2.   General rates: where the Governing Body determines total budget and how it is allocated to each local board through a formula (using factors such as population, etc)

3.   Combination of both: Governing Body and local boards share decisions.

 

8.       Local boards had a majority preference for funding locally driven initiatives from general rates using a formula to allocate budget to each local board. Two local boards supported funding all local activities from a local rate subject to further work being undertaken on this option.

9.       Staff recommend that locally driven initiatives be funded by a local rate because it creates better alignment between decisions on expenditure and decisions on funding. Funding locally driven initiatives from a local rate will not materially impact on affordability of rates. 

General rate allocation formula

10.     If locally driven initiatives are to be funded from general rates then the Governing Body will need to determine the formula used to allocate budget to each local board. There is a majority preference from local boards for the allocation formula to use population with support for adjustments for deprivation and geography although at different levels. There was also limited support for using rates collected.

11.     Staff recommend that the main factor should be population with any adjustment for deprivation being small (5 percent). Geography and rates collected are not recommended.

12.     The allocation formula should be phased in over three years to allow local boards time to manage the change in their budgets. This is because it is cost neutral and those who are receiving increases would fund the transition for those facing decreases. Local boards would still be able to use local targeted rates to maintain current expenditure levels.

Other issues

13.     This report also contains recommendations on:

·    funding for capital expenditure

·    how fees and charges are used.

 

14.     The attached report “Summary of local board feedback on the local boards funding policy” summarises the feedback and includes the complete resolutions from local board meetings in March and April.

15.     A draft Statement of Proposal and proposed amendments to the Local boards funding policy are attached to this report.  They are written to facilitate implementation of decisions and do not align with staff recommendations. They are based on an assessment of the preferences expressed in the Budget Committee workshop on 15 May. They will be updated to reflect decisions made at this meeting.

16.     Changes to the Local boards funding policy must be adopted by mid-August 2014 so that the draft Long-term Plan 2015-2025 can be prepared using the new policy. To meet this timeline a decision on the draft policy will need to be made before the end of May so that public consultation can be undertaken in June and July 2014.


 

Recommendation/s

That the Budget Committee:

a)      adopt for consultation the Statement of proposal to amend the Local boards funding policy and Long-term Plan 2012-2022 including a preferred option based on

i)        separating local activities into two parts, as defined in the report:

1.      local asset based services

2.      locally driven initiatives.

ii)       the costs of asset based services being funded from general rates, in accordance with asset management plans and the regional budgeting process

iii)      a)      the costs for locally driven initiatives being funded from a local rate set at different levels in each local board area and that no transition mechanism is used (staff recommendation), or

b)      each local board being allocated a share of a total general rate funded budget for locally driven initiatives set by the Governing Body each year with 95 percent of the total budget being allocated to each local board based on their share of population and 5 percent of the total budget being allocated to each local board based on their share of average deprivation; and that the transition be managed by phasing the changes to locally driven initiative budgets over 3 years

iv)      there being no allocation of discretionary capital expenditure to local boards and that local boards are able to make investment decisions, within Governing Body parameters, providing the local board can meet the consequential operating costs from their locally driven initiatives budget

v)      a)      funding for local activities on Great Barrier Island is agreed each year during the budgeting process (staff recommendation), or

b)      funding for local activities on Great Barrier Island and Waiheke is agreed each year during the budgeting process

b)      delegate authority for updating the Amendments to the local Boards funding policy and the Statement of proposal to reflect the decisions made at this meeting and to make minor editorial changes or correction of minor errors to the Chairperson or Deputy Chairperson of the Budget Committee, and the Chief Finance Officer.

c)      note that further work will be undertaken as part of the long-term plan programme to:

i)        determine the appropriate amount of budget for local boards to successfully deliver on their role as part of the overall prioritisation

ii)       determine whether more activities and the corresponding budget should sit in the locally driven initiatives category as part of the review of the allocation of decision making

iii)      improve the methodology of allocating overheads to all council activities, including local activities

d)      appoint a Hearings Panel of five members to hear submissions, deliberate and make recommendations to the Budget Committee on the review of the Local Board Funding Policy.

e)      delegate the Chairperson or the Deputy Chairperson of the Budget Committee the authority to make replacement or additional appointments to the hearings panel.

 

 

Background

 

17.     Workshops were undertaken with local boards in February and March on the policy options agreed by the Governing Body on 20 February. This report reflects local board resolutions following those workshops. A summary of the local board’s views and the full local board resolutions are included in the attached report “Summary of local board feedback on the local boards funding policy”.

18.     Legislation requires that the Local boards funding policy have regard to a number of different factors. These factors have been considered in the development of the proposals in this report and have been covered in previous advice.

19.     The policy options proposed splitting local activities into two categories with different funding mechanisms as set out in the table below.

Service classification

Examples

Nature of decision making

Budget 2013/2014

Funding option

Local asset based services

Primarily those services delivered from facilities.

Includes other services where funding and service levels are set by the Governing Body

Parks swimming pools and community centres

Citizenship ceremonies

Governing Body decides:

·      base service levels

·      total expenditure

·      funding sources

 

Local boards:

·      advocate on funding and service levels via AMPs

·      make decisions within Governing Body  parameters

·      may enhance service levels as a locally driven initiative

$299 million

General rates to fund service levels set by Governing Body after considering local board advocacy

Locally driven initiatives

Where local boards determine services and service levels

Local events, community safety initiatives, fund service improvements for local asset based services

Local boards make service level and expenditure decisions within overall budget set by Governing Body

$32 million

3 options as discussed in following section

 

20.     When determining options for funding local activities the key issues for the Governing Body and local boards to consider are:

·    who is best placed to determine what is a fair distribution of services across local boards?

·    who is best placed to determine what residents and ratepayers can afford?

·    how do you ensure the link between accountability to ratepayers and decision making on how rates are spent?

 

21.     The review has provided an opportunity to consider options for a fairer and transparent means of funding local activities.  The current distribution of funding is not fair in any dimension except in so far as it required no change to budgets.  The different dimensions of fairness are reflected in the criteria adopted by the Governing Body in May 2012. These have been used to evaluate policy options based on legislative requirements and the core principles in the Revenue and financing policy:

·    equitable capacity for each local board to enhance well-being

·    paying for benefits received (those who use services should pay for them)

·    alignment between decisions on funding and decisions on expenditure

·    affordability

·    administrative effectiveness

·    minimising change.


Discussion

Funding local asset based services

22.     The policy proposed continuing to fund local asset based services ($299m), such as swimming pools and parks, from the general rate. Local boards have an advocacy role in decisions on local asset based services and make decisions within parameters set by the Governing Body. There was general agreement from local boards on the approach to split local asset based services and locally driven initiatives and to continue to fund local asset based services from the general rate.

23.     Service level equity issues for local asset based services ($299m) are a key concern for local boards as they are more material than locally driven initiatives ($32m). Local boards strongly support the Governing Body review of service level equity for local asset based services. The local boards have made requests on how the review proceeds which have been incorporated, where possible, into the work programme.

24.     With respect to local activities, local boards raised the following issues relating to the role that local boards play within the decision making process:

·    concern that the total funding of $332m for local activities was not sufficient to fully discharge their role

·    desire for the scope of their role under the allocation of decision making to be wider

·    request that the method for allocating overheads is reviewed and improved.

 

25.     The Governing Body will consider these issues in development of the long-term plan. The long-term plan will include setting expenditure and service levels for local activities and it will also include a review of the:

·    allocation of activities between regional and local

·    allocation of decision making for local activities

·    method for allocating overheads, including those for local activities

 

26.     There will be engagement with local boards when these issues are considered and local boards will have an advocacy role within the decision making process.

Funding locally driven initiatives

27.     As there is general agreement on funding for local asset based services, the key focus of the review is determining how to fund locally driven initiatives ($32m), such as events and community programmes. These are services where local boards have full decision making control. The key issue when determining the funding method is whether the Governing Body or local boards should make decisions on the level expenditure and rates.


28.     The Governing Body proposed three options for funding locally driven initiatives. The table below sets these out and the decision making roles that the Governing Body and local boards have under each option.

Operating expenditure

Size of budget

Distribution of budget between local boards

Level of service

Detail on assets and services e.g.: location, colour, etc.

Distribution of rates between ratepayers

Option 1: Local rates fund locally driven initiatives

Any rate will appear as a separate line item on the rates invoice

Governing Body

Advocacy

Advocacy

Advocacy

Advocacy

Sets local rates for LB’s

Local Boards

Decision making

Decision making

Decision making

Decision making

Decision making

Option 2: General rates allocation funds locally driven initiatives

Governing Body

Decision making

Decision making - formula

Advocacy but may also set parameters

Advocacy but may also set parameters

Decision making

Local Boards

Advocacy

Advocacy

Decision making

Decision making

Advocacy

Option 3: Combined general rate allocation and local rate

 

Governing Body

Decision making for each element of funding is divided as per options 1. and 2. above.

General rate allocation based on each board receiving the current minimum per head of population allocation and local rate struck to fund difference to budget

Local Boards

29.     For clarity, the following table sets out the different forms of rates that the council has available to use.

Rate type/descriptor

Funding use in local board context and wider context

General rate

·      General council activities

·      Local asset based services and/or locally driven initiatives

Targeted rate

·      Specific rate for those who receive service e.g. solid waste targeted rate

·      Specific rate for particular parts of the city e.g. former ARC public transport rate

Local targeted rate

·      Set within a local board area to fund one or more locally driven initiatives

30.     Under the local rate option, the Governing Body allocates decisions on the rates requirements for locally driven initiatives to each local board. Transition management is not recommended for options that use a local rate as the rates impact is small.

31.     Under the allocation and combined options the Governing Body sets the budget available to local boards to fund locally driven initiatives and the allocation formula used to distribute it. Local boards can only advocate for increases in the budget and changes to the formula.

32.     Each option has been assessed against the criteria set out earlier. The table below sets out a summary of this assessment ranked low to high.

Assessment criteria

Status quo

Option 1: Local rate

Option 2: General rate allocation

Option 3: Combined general rate allocation and local rate

1.     Equitable capacity to enhance wellbeing*

Low

High

High

High

2.     Pay for benefits received

Low

High

Low

Medium

3.     Alignment with decision making

Low

High

Low

Medium

4.     Affordability

High

Medium

High

Medium

5.     Administrative effectiveness

High

High

High

Medium

6.     Minimise change

High

High

Medium

High

* all options except the status quo deliver an equitable capacity to enhance well-being.  The different ways in which this is achieved are reflected in the assessment of criteria 2 to 4.

33.     The status quo is not fair in any dimension (except in so far as no change to budgets is required) in terms of how funding is distributed to local boards as there is no connection to any measure of equity, e.g. population, and the funding provided.

34.     The local rate and combined options result in the least change to local board budgets and the change to rates is small.  The local rate provides the best alignment between expenditure and funding decisions and the combined options has better alignment than the general rate option. The allocation option is best for affordability as it doesn’t change the incidence of rates.

35.     Local boards had a majority preference for funding locally driven initiatives from general rates using a formula to allocate budget to each local board. Two local boards supported funding all local activities from the local rate, subject to further work being undertaken, and none supported the combined general rate allocation and local rate option.

36.     Under all options for funding locally driven initiatives, a local board may propose a local rate to fund all or part of a local activity.

General rate allocation options

37.     The Governing Body will need to determine the formula used to allocate budget to each local board if locally driven initiatives are to be funded from general rates.

38.     Population size has a strong relationship to cost of services and should be a key consideration in an allocation formula.  However, there is no objective evidence to inform the relationship between budget requirements and attributes like deprivation and geography.   Defining the factors to be used in a funding formula is therefore subjective.

39.     Rates collected in each local board area are not an appropriate factor to use in a funding formula as this was considered in developing the rating policy. Local rates achieve the same effect with increased transparency, while giving local boards more control. Deprivation was also indirectly considered in developing the rating policy.

40.     It is recommended that geography should not be used in the allocation formula as this has a high distortion affect on the end allocation which does not align with need. Although the costs for providing services could be increased by the relatively low distribution of population, this is at least partially off set by the increased costs of providing services in urbanised areas.

41.     Local boards agreed that population should be the primary factor in any allocation formula. However there are mixed views on what and how any others factors should be included. The distribution of views are set out in the table below.

Attribute

Local boards in support

Weighting to be applied

Population

21

Significant

Deprivation

17

None to low

Geography

16

None to low

Rates

6

None to low

 

42.     Transition to the new funding allocation should be phased in over 3 years to allow boards to manage change in their budgets. Phasing in the budget changes will mean that those local boards receiving increases would fund the transition for those facing decreases. Phasing in the changes would be cost neutral and move local boards to a fair funding level within the triennial long-term plan cycle. Those local boards facing decreases could maintain their existing budgets by using a local rate.


43.     There are no transition options available to ensure that no local board faces a reduction in its budget that are both affordable and timely.  The table below sets out the estimated impact of alternate options, based on an allocation formula using 95 percent population and 5 percent deprivation.

Transition Option

Great Barrier Island treated separately

Great Barrier Island and Waiheke Island treated separately

1.     1. All boards moved to the highest per capita funding level immediately

(actual funding would vary between boards based on the formula)

$85 million

$12 million

2.     2. Movement to formula based funding achieved only by use of growth in funding*

38 years

9 years

3.     3. Movement to formula based funding achieved with a top up and by use of growth in funding* over five years

$67 million

$5 million

* assumed to be 4 per cent per annum being  the projected growth in rates revenue which is the sum of 2.5 per cent inflation and 1.5 per cent growth in the rating base

 

44.     Attachment D sets out the impact on local boards of each of the options discussed above.  Two sets of impacts have prepared, one set where Great Barrier Island has been removed and a second set where both Great Barrier Island and Waiheke has been removed.

Other issues

45.     Great Barrier Island local activities should be funded from general rates based on the level agreed with the Governing Body. Funding locally driven initiatives for Great Barrier Island from local rates would not be affordable. Waiheke Island is also an outlier in terms of impact under the policy options, although not to the same degree. It has also been suggested that Franklin, Rodney and Waitakere Ranges are also special cases.  All local boards have individual characteristics that distinguish them. Staff consider that only Great Barrier Island is unique enough to justify separate treatment.

46.     Although not recommended by staff, the Governing Body may wish to treat Waiheke in the same way as it treats Great Barrier Island.

47.     Implementing a new local boards funding policy presents a range of other issues. These issues have been addressed in the earlier advice and there have been no changes to this advice. The issues are summarised below:

·    growth:

asset management planning will provide for the investments required to meet growth in demand for local asset based services

those boards whose population is growing faster will receive an increasing share of the total funding for local activities made available by the Governing Body under a general rate allocation

local rates revenue will grow with growth in rateable properties

·    treatment of fees and charges revenue: the Governing Body will set a base level of fees and charges for asset based services. Revenue from the base level of fees and charges will be used to offset the general rates funding requirement. A local board may change the level of fees and charges within parameters set by the Governing Body. Any increase in revenue will accrue to the local boards locally driven initiatives budget. Any shortfall in revenue will need to be met from the local boards locally driven initiatives budget


 

·    capital expenditure: capital expenditure will be allocated to local boards for investment decisions made by the Governing Body. The Governing Body will also allocate budget for consequential operating costs (interest, depreciation, etc) associated with the investment.  There will be no allocation of discretionary capital expenditure to local boards.  Capital expenditure will be allocated to local boards to fund their investment decisions within Governing Body parameters providing they can meet the consequential operating costs from their locally driven initiatives budgets.

 

Consultation and hearings

48.     There is a legislative requirement that a special consultative procedure be conducted to amend the policy. Consultation on amending the policy is not expected to have high public interest given that the policy deals with funding mechanisms rather than budgets. The level of public interest is expected to be lowest if there are no proposed changes to the rating policy.

49.     Council’s existing channels will be used where possible (eg: libraries, council website), however due to the lead in times required notice is unable to be included in Our Auckland. A public notice will be placed in the NZ herald as well as advertisements in the suburban newspapers. Consultation material will also be available from local board offices.

50.     No public meetings are planned as the policy primarily impacts on internal processes. However, local boards may hold their own public meetings if they wish.

51.     The consultation period will run from 9 June to 9 July. Hearings will be scheduled in the week 21 to 25 July. This report contains recommendations for the appointment of members to the hearings panel.

Consideration

Local board views

52.     The key issues raised in local board feedback are discussed above. The attached report “Summary of local board feedback on the local boards funding policy” summarises the feedback and includes the complete resolutions from local board meetings in March and April.

53.     A strategic issue for local boards is the share of budget allocated for local activities.  Local boards note that the locally driven initiatives budget accounts for one per cent of total operating costs, and asset based services account for ten per cent of council’s total operating costs.  Local boards have recommended that further work be undertaken to:

·    determine whether 11 per cent of Auckland Council’s budget is an appropriate share for local activities

·    determine the appropriate amount of budget for local boards to successfully deliver upon their role noting that the current allocation is based on a cut of legacy council budgets and was determined at a time when little was understood about the local board role

·    determine whether more activities and the corresponding funding should sit in the locally driven initiatives category

·    identify programme budgets to move to local board budgets as current local budgets are dominated by overhead costs with little funding for programmes

·    investigate programme budgets held by the Community Development, Arts and Culture department, in particular, given the key role for local boards in community development

·    investigate and improve the methodology of allocating overheads across the local boards as currently different approaches are used across activities.


54.     In their feedback local boards identified three service areas they considered should be moved from the locally driven initiatives category to local asset based services.  In response staff re-categorised these service areas as asset based services:

·    local environmental and heritage protection

·    BID overhead allocations

·    citizenship ceremonies.

Maori impact statement

55.     Maori could be impacted by the options discussed in this report in the following ways:

·    under a general rate allocation model the level of locally driven initiative budget available to a local board may change

·    under a local rate funding model the level of rates paid may change.

 

56.     The impacts will depend on which option is chosen for implementation and how each local board responds to any changes.

57.     Maori may benefit from a funding formula that has greater emphasis on deprivation, based on 2013 census data, as this will provide more funding to local boards with higher Maori populations. How Maori are impacted would depend on how the local boards choose to use their locally driven initiatives budget.

58.     The review of the local boards funding policy will not change the Maori freehold land rates remission and postponement policy.

 

Attachments

No.

Title

Page

aView

Draft Statement of Proposal

15

bView

Draft amendments to the Local boards funding policy

21

cView

Summary of local boards feedback

25

dView

Modelling funding options - reduced options

79

      

Signatories

Authors

Aaron Matich - Principal Advisor Modelling

Andrew Duncan - Manager Financial Policy

Authorisers

Matthew Walker - Manager Financial Plan Policy and Budgeting

Andrew McKenzie - Chief Finance Officer

 


Budget Committee

26 May 2014

 

 

Statement of proposal to amend Auckland Councils local boards funding policy

 

Background

 

The local boards funding policy[1] sets out how the council will fund local activities. This provides local boards with certainty about the level of funding and an equitable capacity to enhance wellbeing.  The policy covers funding for:

1.   local activities

2.   funding allocated for non-dedicated purposes

3.   administrative support for local boards

No changes are proposed to 2 and 3 above.

 

Details of proposal

 

The council proposes to amend its local boards funding policy as set out in full in the following section. The proposed amendments to the policy separate local activities into two categories to better align decisions on services with decisions on funding.

 

Local asset based services

(2013/2014 $299 million)

 

Locally driven intiativies

(2013/2014 $32 million)

 

Examples

·      Parks

·      Swimming pools

·      Community centres

·      Citizenship ceremonies

Examples

·      Local events

·      Community safety initiatives

·      Improvements above regional standards for local asset based services

 

               

Funding for local asset based services

1.   Region wide service levels for local asset based services will be set by the Governing Body. This determines the cost of providing local asset based services

2.   Baseline fee levels will be set by the Governing Body for local asset based services

3.   Baseline fees and other revenue from local asset based services in each local board area will offset the general rates funding requirement for local asset based services for that local board area

4.   General rate funding will be provided to each local board to meet the balance of the cost of providing local asset based services in their local board area as determined in the long-term or annual plan.

 

Funding for locally driven initiatives

1.   Total general rate funded budget available for allocation to local boards for locally driven initiatives will be determined for each year by the Governing Body in the long-term plan or the annual plan

2.   Each local board will be allocated a share the funding in 1 above, less the funding for Great Barrier Island and Waiheke, in proportion to their share of the population (95 percent) and deprivation (5 percent) excluding the population and deprivation figures for Great Barrier Island and Waiheke. 

3.   Local boards may change the level of fees for services in their area. Increased revenue as a result of this will be available to each local board to fund locally driven initiatives. Decreased revenue will be required to be funded from each local boards locally driven initiative budget

4.   Local boards may ask the Governing Body to set a targeted rate to fund locally driven initiative expenditure in excess of that funded from the general rate, fees and other revenue

5.   Locally driven initiative expenditure for Waiheke and Great Barrier Island will be funded from the general rate, local fees and other revenue to the level agreed with the Governing Body in the local board agreement each year.

 

The respective decision making roles are therefore as set out in the table below.

Governing Body

Advocacy

Advocacy

Advocacy

Advocacy

Sets local rates for LB’s

Local Boards

Decision making

Decision making

Decision making

Decision making

Decision making

 

 

Impact on long-term plan

The policy does not set service levels or expenditure for local activities. These are set in local board agreements between the Governing Body and local boards each year in the long-term plan or the annual plan. Draft local board agreements will be consulted on alongside the Draft Long-term Plan 2015-2025.

 

Reasons for proposal

 

Local asset based services funding

Local asset based services are provided to Aucklanders from a network of facilities across the region.  The council’s planning process gives consideration to all the dimensions of need that influence the impact on well-being and the demand for these services.

 

Funding for these services should come from general rates because:

·      service areas do not align with local board boundaries and are provided to Aucklanders rather than the residents of individual local boards

·      decisions on service levels and funding are made at a regional level to ensure that an equitable level of service is provided

                                               

Locally driven initiatives funding

 

The current per capita funding for locally driven initiatives varies widely across the region as set out in the table below.

 

Great Barrier ($1,511)

Franklin ($25)

Maungakiekie-Tamaki ($19)

Waiheke ($122)

Upper Harbour ($24)

Puketapapa ($18)

Papakura ($31)

Rodney ($23)

Henderson-Massey ($18)

Mangere-Otahuhu ($28)

Kaipatiki ($21)

Waitemata ($18)

Devonport-Takapuna ($28)

Whau ($21)

Hibiscus and Bays ($16)

Waitakere Ranges ($27)

Howick ($21)

Albert-Eden ($16)

Otara-Papatoetoe ($25)

Manurewa ($19)

Orakei ($13)

 

The general rate funding available for locally driven initiatives will be set out in the long-term plan and annual plans allowing for the appropriate resourcing of these activities relative to the councils other priorities.

 

It is proposed to treat Great Barrier Island and Waiheke separately because of their unique characteristics.

 

Allocating the remainder of the funding to each board based on population adjusted for deprivation ensures each board has an equitable capacity to enhance the wellbeing of their residents. Population is included as it is the key driver of demand for, and cost of, providing locally driven initiatives.  While there is no evidence to support a strong link between locally driven initiatives and socio-economic factors like as deprivation the council has judged that it is appropriate to provide a small extra resource to those areas with greater deprivation.  Other factors considered and rejected were rates paid and geography. Neither has evidence to support its inclusion. Where the rates are collected was a key element considered in developing the rating policy and should be considered in that context. Using geography causes some significant shifts in the allocation of funding that aren’t justified on the basis of need.

 

The proposed approach will result in changes to the levels of general rates funded budget available to each local board for locally driven initiatives. The estimated per capita funding and locally driven initiative budget changes based on the 2013/2014 budgets are set out in the table below.

 

Papakura: $22.10

(-29.60%)

Upper Harbour: $20.76

(-12.77%)

Maungakiekie-Tamaki:$21.45

(11.50%)

Devonport-Takapuna: $20.83

(-25.56%)

Rodney: $20.99

(-9.15%)

Henderson-Massey: $20.85

(13.41%)

Waitakere Ranges: $21.23

(-22.58%)

Howick: $20.36

(-2.21%)

Puketapapa: $21.55

(16.74%)

Mangere-Otahuhu: $21.76

(-22.57%)

Kaipatiki: $20.77

(-1.34%)

Waitemata: $20.96

(18.43%)

Franklin: $20.81

(-15.37%)

Whau: $21.25

(1.55%)

Hibiscus and Bays: $20.49

(25.41%)

Otara-Papatoetoe: $21.58

(-14.05%)

Manurewa: $21.27

(9.09%)

Albert-Eden: $20.73

(33.25%)

 

Orakei: $20.45

(55.04%)

 

The impact of these will be mitigated by the phased implementation of this policy over a three year period. This will allow local boards to:

·      adjust their budgets to focus on the services that make the most difference for their communities

·      propose a local targeted rate to fund any shortfall in revenue.

 

Options

 

The council considered there were no practicable alternative options for funding local asset based services. Local asset based services are provided to Aucklanders rather than the residents of local boards from a network that doesn’t align with local board boundaries.  Funding for local asset based services cannot be shared out amongst local boards without creating major funding anomalies. The council has considered the following two options for locally driven initiatives.

 


Local rates funding for locally driven initiatives:

 

Each local board would decide on the level of locally driven initiatives to be provided in their area and the rates required to fund these.

 

The general rate requirement would reduce as the local rate would now recover the costs of locally driven initiatives.  The local rate for each local board area would show as a separate line on the rates bill.

 

The table below shows the average changes to rates in each local board area to maintain 2013/2014 locally driven initiative budgets.  Local boards would decide on the actual level of expenditure and local rate as part of the Local board agreement for the 2015/2016 year. The average rates in each local board area would change with some increasing and others falling.   The changes to rates are relatively small and are set out in the table below. 

 

Waiheke ($119)

Whau ($21)

Rodney (-$1)

Papakura ($52)

Henderson-Massey ($17)

Upper Harbour (-$11)

Waitakere Ranges ($44)

Franklin ($15)

Hibiscus and Bays (-$11)

Otara-Papatoetoe ($47)

Puketapapa ($13)

Albert-Eden (-$25)

Mangere-Otahuhu ($55)

Kaipatiki ($13)

Maungakiekie-Tamaki (-$29)

Manurewa ($29)

Devonport-Takapuna ($1)

Orakei (-$46)

Howick ($1)

Waitemata (-$77)

 

This option provides a strong connection between decisions by local boards on the services to be provided and the cost of funding them.  This option was rejected because locally driven initiatives are a core council service and should be funded from general rates.

 

The respective decision making roles are therefore as set out in the table below.

Governing Body

Decision making

Decision making - formula

Advocacy but may also set parameters

Advocacy but may also set parameters

Decision making

Local Boards

Advocacy

Advocacy

Decision making

Decision making

Advocacy

 

 

Combined general rates allocation and local rates funding

A combination of a general rates allocation and local rates was also considered.  Under this option each local board would be provided with the minimum current level of funding for local activities of $13 per head of population.  Each local board would then set a targeted rate to bring their funding up to a level required to meet the level of expenditure to fund their decisions on the level of locally driven initiatives.

 


This option has elements of both the proposal and other alternative above.  It results in the least change to the current situation but leaves some of the decision making on what is a fair level of funding to the Governing Body.  The impact of this option on rates is set out in the table below.

 

Waiheke ($116)

Devonport-Takapuna ($6)

Howick (-$5)

Papakura ($32)

Whau ($3)

Puketapapa (-$5)

Waitakere Ranges ($22)

Manurewa ($3)

Maungakiekie-Tamaki (-$18)

Mangere-Otahuhu ($31)

Kaipatiki ($1)

Hibiscus and Bays (-$15)

Otara-Papatoetoe ($21)

Rodney (-$1)

Albert-Eden (-$23)

Franklin ($7)

Upper Harbour (-$5)

Waitemata (-$36)

Henderson-Massey (-$3)

Orakei (-$33)

 

 

This option was rejected as it adds complexity to funding and doesn’t provide substantial benefits over the proposal.

 

Transition options

The council considered options for managing the impact of changing to the proposed policy.  These were designed to ensure that no board would receive less locally driven initiative funding than their present allocation.

 

The table below sets out the cost and/or time of alternative transition options.

Transition Option

Great Barrier Island treated separately

Great Barrier Island and Waiheke Island treated separately

1.   1. All boards moved to the highest per capita funding level immediately

(actual funding would vary between boards based on the deprivation factor)

$85 million

$12 million

2.   2. Movement to formula based funding achieved only by use of growth in funding[2]

38 years

9 years

3.   3. Movement to formula based funding achieved with a top up and by use of growth in funding over five years

$67 million

$5 million

 

These options were rejected because of the additional costs and/or the extended time taken to move to new funding levels.

 

How this proposal will amend the Long –term Plan 2012-2022

This proposal will amend the long-term plan by replacing the current sections of the local boards funding policy with the amendments set out in the following section.


Budget Committee

26 May 2014

 

 




Budget Committee

26 May 2014

 

 

Summary of local board feedback on the Local Boards Funding Policy

 

 

Introduction

(1)  This memo provides a summary of local board feedback on the draft funding policy amendments drawn from resolutions passed by each local board.  An analysis of these and a full set of the resolutions are attached. 

 

Strategic issues

(2)  The local board funding policy’s main focus is on funding deemed to be discretionary for local boards ($36 million or 1% of Council’s operating budget).  While local boards have commented on this, all local boards have focused on strategic issues which they see as fundamental to any funding policy being adopted.

 

(3)  A key issue for local boards is around equity in asset and service provision.  They note that while council has moved towards a single rating system resulting in the region being rated on an equal basis, asset and service provision largely reflects legacy budgets.  Local boards are not necessarily arguing for uniform service levels across the region but for a consistent approach and the establishment of standard service levels.  This is fundamental to local board funding, local board plans and local board agreements.

 

(4)  Given (3) local boards support the 20 February 2014 Finance and Performance Committee resolution directing staff to consider service level equity issues for local asset based services as part of the development of the Long Term Plan and asset management plans to engage with local boards on this and to report back on a timetable.

 

Through their resolutions local boards have requested that:

·      the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) includes a staging of the key deliverables, with prioritised asset classes and service levels for review be presented to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party on 6 May 2014; and

·      the engagement process and the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) is agreed with the local board.

 

(5)  Another strategic issue for local boards relates to the share of Council’s budget earmarked for local activities.  They note that that locally driven initiatives (e.g local events, local community development, local economic development, local environmental programmes) account for one per cent of Council’s budget, and local asset based services (e.g community centres, swimming pools, libraries, parks) account for ten per cent of council’s total operating costs.  The local boards recommend that further work is undertaken to:

 

·      determine whether 11 per cent of Auckland Council’s budget is an appropriate share for local activities;

·      determine the appropriate amount of budget for local boards to successfully deliver upon their role noting that the current allocation is based on a cut of legacy council budgets and was determined at a time when little was understood about the local board role;

·      determine whether more activities and the corresponding funding should sit in the locally driven initiatives category;

·      identify programme budgets to move to local board budgets as current local budgets are dominated by overhead costs with little funding for programmes;

·      investigate programme budgets held by the Community Development, Arts and Culture department, in particular, given the key role for local boards in community development; and

·      investigate and improve the methodology of allocating overheads across the local boards as currently different approaches are used across activities.

 

(6)  Majority of local boards have also recognised that population based formulas are unlikely to work for Great Barrier and Waiheke. They have requested clarity on the treatment for these two local boards, including implications for all other local boards.

 

Timeline

(7)  Majority of the local boards have endorsed the process and timelines for the Local Boards Funding Policy, provided that the work on service level equity issues (including asset provision) and related work as noted above is progressed in parallel to the local boards funding policy.

 

(8)  Two local boards (Franklin and Papakura) have expressed concerns about the timeline and Franklin recommends that if no clear policy or direction is achieved on equity in asset and service provision prior to the adoption of the LTP, then the status quo should remain in place to avoid possible greater inequities.  Manurewa has also noted the risk of a further review of the funding policy being needed if comprehensive work on all related issues including service levels and asset management plans is not undertaken.

 

Funding sources for asset based services and locally driven initiatives

(9)  Majority of local boards (19) support asset based services being funded by a general rate, as proposed in the draft policy.  Two local boards (Franklin and Rodney) have requested that further work is undertaken on local rate options for all local funding (asset based and locally driven). Orakei local board while supporting a general rate funding for asset based services has also requested further work on local rates for all local funding. 

 

(10) Majority of local boards (19) support locally driven initiatives being funded by the general rate.  They do not agree with the options in the draft funding policy of a local (targeted) rate being used for locally driven initiatives.  They note that local rates can lead to inequity and affordability issues.  As noted above Franklin, Rodney and Orakei support further work on local rates for all local funding, not just for locally driven initiatives.

 

(11) Majority of local boards have noted that a targeted rate can be used to enhance service levels once standard service levels across the region have been determined.  This tool is already available to local boards through the Auckland legislation. 

 

General rate funding allocation for locally driven initiatives

(12) All local boards have resolved on the general rate allocation options for locally driven initiatives including Franklin and Rodney. While Franklin and Rodney would prefer more work to be done on local rate funding, they have indicated preferences for the general rate allocation method in case that is the only funding method adopted.

(13) Most local boards requested that further work be undertaken to develop additional general rate allocation scenarios (potentially phased in over time) where no local board receives any reduction in funding.  This is based on the fact that current locally driven initiative allocations allow for minimal discretion for most local boards (overheads rather than programmes dominate budgets) and any reduction will impact on existing service levels.

 

(14) For the general rate funding allocation formula:

·      All local boards recommend that population should be the main attribute to allocate locally driven initiatives.

 

·      17 out of 21 local boards recommend that deprivation also be included (this attribute is not supported by Devonport-Takapuna, Hibiscus and Bays, Kaipatiki and Upper Harbour).

 

·      16 out of 21 local boards recommend that geographic isolation also be included (this attribute is not supported by Manurewa, Papakura, Puketapapa, Upper Harbour and Whau).

 

·      Six out of 21 local boards recommend that rates collected are used as a factor for allocating general rates funding.  The draft local board funding policy did not model this option because general rates have an element of both tax and payment for services received.  The distribution of rates across rate payers was considered in the development of the rating policy.  The local boards supporting this are Devonport-Takapuna, Upper Harbour, Hibiscus and Bays, Howick, Orakei. Great Barrier supports it, but not for itself. 

 

·      Three local boards (Franklin, Rodney and Hibiscus and Bays) suggested that growth should be factored in to any locally driven initiatives allocation.

 

 


Budget Committee

26 May 2014

 

 

AC new logo_horz_b&wAC new logo_horz_b&wAnalysis of local board recommendations on the review of the Local Boards Funding Policy

 

Recommendation

Local boards that support this recommendation

Total

Notes that council has moved towards a single rating system resulting in the region being rated on an equal basis.  However, equity in asset and service provision has not yet been addressed

Albert-Eden

Great Barrier

Mangere-Otahuhu

Orakei

Puketapapa

Waitakere Ranges

Kaipatiki

Devonport-Takapuna

Henderson-Massey

Manurewa

Otara-Papatoetoe

Rodney

Waitemata

Franklin

Howick

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Papakura

Waiheke

Whau

19

Notes that locally driven initiatives and local asset based services account for approximately one and ten percent, respectively, of council’s total operating costs, and recommend that further work is undertaken to determine whether 11 percent of Auckland Council’s budget is an appropriate share for local activities

Albert-Eden

Henderson-Massey

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Papakura

Upper Harbour

Waitemata

Manurewa

Devonport-Takapuna

Hibiscus and Bays

Orakei

Puketapapa

Waiheke

Whau

Franklin

Mangere-Otahuhu

Otara-Papatoetoe

Rodney

Waitakere Ranges

Kaipatiki

19

Support the 20 February 2014 Finance and Performance Committee resolution directing staff to consider service level equity issues for local asset based services as part of the development of the Long Term Plan and asset management plans and engage with local boards on this and report back on a timetable

Albert-Eden

Henderson-Massey

Mangere-Otahuhu

Orakei

Puketapapa

Waiheke

Kaipatiki

Devonport-Takapuna

Hibiscus and Bays

Manurewa

Otara-Papatoetoe

Rodney

Waitemata

Franklin

Howick

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Papakura

Upper Harbour

Whau

19

Request that the engagement process and the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) is agreed with the local boards

Albert-Eden

Henderson-Massey

Manurewa

Otara-Papatoetoe

Upper Harbour

Whau

Devonport-Takapuna

Hibiscus and Bays

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Papakura

Waiheke

Kaipatiki

Franklin

Mangere-Otahuhu

Orakei

Puketapapa

Waitemata

17

Endorse the process and timelines for the Local Boards Funding Policy, provided that the work on service level equity issues (including asset provision) is progressed in parallel to the local boards funding policy

Albert-Eden

Henderson-Massey

Mangere-Otahuhu

Orakei

Puketapapa

Waitakere Ranges

 

Devonport-Takapuna

Hibiscus and Bays

Manurewa

Otara-Papatoetoe

Rodney

Waitemata

Howick

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Papakura

Upper Harbour

Whau

Kaipatiki

18

Request that the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) includes a staging of the key deliverables, with prioritised asset classes and service levels for review be presented to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party on 6 May 2014

Albert-Eden

Hibiscus and Bays

Manurewa

Otara-Papatoetoe

Upper Harbour

Waitemata

Devonport-Takapuna

Howick

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Papakura

Waiheke

Whau

Henderson-Massey

Mangere-Otahuhu

Orakei

Puketapapa

Waitakere Ranges

Kaipatiki

18

Recommend that clarity on the treatment of both the Waiheke and Great Barrier local boards, and understanding the implications for the other local boards is required prior to the adoption of the policy

Albert-Eden

Howick

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Papakura

Waiheke

Kaipatiki

Devonport-Takapuna

Mangere-Otahuhu

Orakei

Puketapapa

Waitemata

Whau

Great Barrier

Franklin

Manurewa

Otara-Papatoetoe

Rodney

17

Request that work be undertaken to determine the appropriate amount of budget for local boards to successfully deliver upon their role, noting the current allocation is based on legacy council budgets

Albert-Eden

Henderson-Massey

Manurewa

Otara-Papatoetoe

Rodney

Waitemata

Howick

Devonport-Takapuna

Hibiscus and Bays

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Papakura

Upper Harbour

Whau

Franklin

Mangere-Otahuhu

Orakei

Puketapapa

Waitakere Ranges

Kaipatiki

19

Request that work be undertaken to determine whether more activities and the corresponding funding should sit in the locally driven initiatives category

Albert-Eden

Great Barrier

Mangere-Otahuhu

Orakei

Puketapapa

Waitemata

Devonport-Takapuna

Henderson-Massey

Manurewa

Otara-Papatoetoe

Rodney

Whau

Franklin

Hibiscus and Bays

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Papakura

Upper Harbour

Kaipatiki

18

Request that work be undertaken to identify programme budgets to move to local board budgets as current local budgets are dominated by overhead costs with little funding for programmes

Albert-Eden

Henderson-Massey

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Waiheke

Kaipatiki

Devonport-Takapuna

Hibiscus and Bays

Orakei

Waitemata

Franklin

Otara-Papatoetoe

Rodney

Whau

13

Request that work be undertaken to investigate programme budgets held by the Community Development, Arts and Culture department, in particular, given the key role for local boards in community development

 

In addition, several local boards noted that other council business units (for example, Economic Development) should also be included within the review of programmes budgets

Albert-Eden

Henderson-Massey

Orakei

Upper Harbour

Waitakere Ranges

Whau

Papakura

Devonport-Takapuna

Hibiscus and Bays

Manurewa

Otara-Papatoetoe

Waiheke

Kaipatiki

Puketapapa

Franklin

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Waitemata

Rodney

Waitemata

Mangere-Otahuhu

20

Request that work be undertaken to investigate and improve the methodology of allocating overheads across the local boards as currently different approaches are used across activities

Albert-Eden

Henderson-Massey

Rodney

Waitemata

Devonport-Takapuna

Hibiscus and Bays

Upper Harbour

Whau

Franklin

Orakei

Waiheke

Kaipatiki

12

Request that work be undertaken to determine whether Business Improvement District (BIDs) corporate overheads should be shifted to local asset based services, as the administrative components (i.e. staffing) are allocated based on the rate collected via the BID, and agreed by the BID and the governing body, not the local boards

Albert-Eden

Hibiscus and Bays

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Puketapapa

Waitemata

Devonport-Takapuna

Mangere-Otahuhu

Orakei

Upper Harbour

Whau

Henderson-Massey

Manurewa

Papakura

Waitakere Ranges

Kaipatiki

15

Notes that current locally driven initiative allocations allow for minimal discretion for most local boards and any reduction will impact on existing service levels

Albert-Eden

Henderson-Massey

Manurewa

Otara-Papatoetoe

Rodney

Waitemata

Devonport-Takapuna

Hibiscus and Bays

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Papakura

Upper Harbour

Whau

Franklin

Mangere-Otahuhu

Orakei

Puketapapa

Waitakere Ranges

Kaipatiki

18

Note that each of the general rate reallocation scenarios (scenarios A, B and F) will lead to funding increases and decreases across the local boards

Albert-Eden

Great Barrier

Mangere-Otahuhu

Orakei

Puketapapa

Waitemata

Devonport-Takapuna

Henderson-Massey

Manurewa

Otara-Papatoetoe

Rodney

Whau

Franklin

Howick

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Papakura

Waiheke

Kaipatiki

18

Recommend that general rate allocation scenarios are developed (potentially phased in over time) where no local board receives any reduction in funding

Albert-Eden

Mangere-Otahuhu

Orakei

Puketapapa

Waitemata

Devonport-Takapuna

Manurewa

Otara-Papatoetoe

Waiheke

Whau

Howick

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Papakura

Waitakere Ranges

Kaipatiki

15

Note a targeted rate is available to enhance service levels above an agreed standard service level, once standard service levels are established

Albert-Eden

Henderson-Massey

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Papakura

Waitemata

Devonport-Takapuna

Mangere-Otahuhu

Orakei

Puketapapa

Whau

Franklin

Manurewa

Otara-Papatoetoe

Rodney

Kaipatiki

15

Recommend that asset based service levels are funded by the general rate

Albert-Eden

Henderson-Massey

Mangere-Otahuhu

Orakei

Puketapapa

Waitakere Ranges

Kaipatiki

Devonport-Takapuna

Hibiscus and Bays

Manurewa

Otara-Papatoetoe

Upper Harbour

Waitemata

Great Barrier

Howick

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Papakura

Waiheke

Whau

19

Locally driven initiatives are funded via the general rate as local initiatives are core council activities, essential to cohesive communities and Auckland being the world’s most liveable city

Albert-Eden

Henderson-Massey

Mangere-Otahuhu

Orakei

Puketapapa

Waitemata

Kaipatiki

Devonport-Takapuna

Hibiscus and Bays

Manurewa

Otara-Papatoetoe

Upper Harbour

Waiheke

Great Barrier

Howick

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Papakura

Waitakere Ranges

Whau

19

Note that local rates can lead to inequity and affordability issues and can lock in legacy council funding models

Albert-Eden

Hibiscus and Bays

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Puketapapa

Waitemata

Devonport-Takapuna

Mangere-Otahuhu

Otara-Papatoetoe

Upper Harbour

Whau

Henderson-Massey

Manurewa

Papakura

Waitakere Ranges

Kaipatiki

15

Recommend that that population should be the main factor, as population tends to be a key driver of the demand for services

Albert-Eden

Great Barrier

Howick

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Papakura

Upper Harbour

Waitemata (80% weighting)

Devonport-Takapuna

Henderson-Massey

Mangere-Otahuhu

Orakei

Puketapapa

Waiheke

Whau

Franklin1

Hibiscus and Bays

Manurewa

Otara-Papatoetoe

Rodney[3]

Waitakere Ranges

Kaipatiki

21

That an adjustment for deprivation should also be applied, as areas of deprivation have characteristics that may indicate a greater dependency on local services

Albert-Eden (a small adjustment)

Henderson-Massey

Manurewa

Otara-Papatoetoe

Rodney (10% max weighting)

Waitemata (10% weighting)

Franklin (10% max weighting)

Howick

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Papakura

Waiheke

Whau

Great Barrier

Mangere-Otahuhu

Orakei[4]

Puketapapa

Waitakere Ranges

Devonport-Takapuna[5]

18

That an adjustment for geographic isolation should also be applied

Albert-Eden

Henderson-Massey

Howick

Orakei

Waiheke

Kaipatiki

Devonport-Takapuna

Hibiscus and Bays (10% max weighting)

Mangere-Otahuhu

Otara-Papatoetoe

Waitemata (10% weighting)

Franklin (no less than deprivation)

Great Barrier

Maungakiekie-Tamaki

Rodney

Waitakere Ranges

16


 

Additional recommendations on policy approaches made by local boards

Funding source for locally driven initiatives

Recommendation

Local Board

Note that while local rates can lead to inequity and affordability issues, it is unlikely that any funding model will provide for regional equity or address affordability issues if council is to achieve the aspirations of the Auckland Plan

Rodney

Franklin

Expresses its concern that it may have to impose a targeted rate to retain current service levels in the event that the governing body sets the new regional service levels at a level that is below the current service level in their area

Devonport-Takapuna

Notes that a local rate is not an option for Great Barrier as the island’s small population would mean that insufficient funds would be generated to achieve the aim of a local rate

Great Barrier

Requests that, for general rates as a funding basis, further work is undertaken on local rates to fund locally driven initiatives and local asset based services, potentially considering also how assets that cover several local boards could be included.

Orakei

Considers that a local rate set, if at a large enough level, can make for transparency in that communities pay for the services they receive and enable local boards to modify the rates paid to their local community

Franklin

 

General rate allocation formula for locally driven initiatives


Recommendation

Local board(s)

That the effect of population includes resident population within a local board area as well as non-resident population (e.g. working, studying, recreating and visiting populations).

Devonport-Takapuna

Notes that the 10% weighting for deprivation in the rate allocation scenarios does not make any discernible difference to funding for deprived areas. A higher weighting for deprivation is required to ensure deprivation issues are realistically addressed.

Henderson-Massey

·      In the wold’s most liveable city the polarisation between wealth and poverty should be minimal and some factors to achieve this can be addressed by Auckland Councils investment in those areas with high levels of deprivation

·      Investments in areas where there is deprivation have proved highly cost effective in that for each dollar spent there is a multiplier.

Papakura

Requests again that further general rate reallocation scenarios increasing the deprivation percentage in 10% intervals to 50% are presented to the boards.

Henderson-Massey

·      Recommend that general rate allocation scenarios are developed (phased in over time via an equity transition fund) and that no local board receives any reduction in funding

·      Population should be reviewed annually to allow for growth.

Kaipatiki

·      Argues that consideration needs to be given to excluding its area from the funding formula, based on its unique nature within the Auckland region; or that the funding policy needs to be revised to take account of that uniqueness.

·      All the scenarios provided in the draft funding policy result in either a big reduction in funding for the Waitakere Ranges area, or an increase in rates to keep the same service levels.

·      The Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area is recognised as being of national significance and is the only land area in the Auckland region that has a specific piece of national legislation over it.

·      The Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area Act 2008 places an obligation on council which needs to be reflected through the funding policy

·      The Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area programme to protect and enhance the heritage area has been allocated as a shared decision making responsibility between the governing body and the local board.

·      Stewardship of the Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area extends throughout our budget, and includes environmental programmes delivered with a community development ethos.

·      The failure to recognise natural and green assets in the funding policy, and the value of programmes that maintain these assets, is of particular concern to the board.

·      The need for a special approach to the Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area (WRHA) was recognised by Auckland Council in March 2012 (RDO/2012/45), when the then Regional Development and Operations Committee created a shared work programme to be delivered by the Governing Body and the Waitakere Ranges Local Board. The shared work programme is strongly aligned to the regional objectives of the Auckland Plan, and the priorities of the Waitakere Ranges Local Board Plan.

·      The proposed service cuts for the Waitakere Ranges area of around 40 percent in Options A and B in the locally driven initiatives (LDI) category would severely undermine the ability of the local board to perform its stewardship role for the Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area, deliver on its local board plan priorities, and respond to local needs.

·      The Waitakere Ranges are ecologically significant and contribute greatly to the strategic directions in Chapter 7 of the Auckland Plan. It is one of the largest areas of coastal and lowland forest with intact sequences remaining in the region. It supports a wide diversity of habitats including forest, shrubland, freshwater streams and rivers, sand flats, dunes, coastal turfs and wetlands. The heritage area as a whole is the home of 93 nationally-threatened species, and has 148 plant species that are considered to be regionally threatened.

·      The failure to recognise natural and green assets in the funding policy, and the value of programmes that maintain these assets, is of particular concern to the Waitakere Ranges Local Board as it has a big impact on its area.

·      Notion of land area be expanded to include a weighting for all land matters including environmental protection and enhancement

·      That there should not be an adjustment for rates collected.

Waitakere Ranges


 

Service level equity issues

Recommendation

Local Board

That further work be undertaken prior to the draft policy being confirmed on local asset based services to determine:

·      levels of service required to be funded from general rates to enable regional consistency

·      identify gaps in network provision and funding inequities

·      the appropriate mechanism to fund these activities (i.e. the general rate, local rate, targeted rate or a combination of all)

·      the impacts any change will have on the decision-making allocation.

Franklin

Rodney

Notes that the service level equity work will need to establish the catchment of the asset based services and identify where the catchments cross local board boundaries. The principle should be that the budget for an asset lies in the local board for where the asset is located. This may result in significant differences in local board budgets for local asset based services.

Kaipatiki

Requests that local boards are always involved and have direct input into the setting of regional service levels

Orakei

Requests that further work be undertaken to address service level equity issues and to increase local board funding to a realistic level funded from reallocations from the local asset based services area to the locally driven initiatives area for consideration and approval by local boards as a prerequisite to implementation of the local board funding policy.

Great Barrier

·      Believes the structure of the Local Boards Funding Policy Review should commence by an examination of the total Auckland Council budget and what is required for local boards and the governing body to undertake their respective governance roles balanced against revenue projections. This should take into account the wider planning and budgetary process and the financial impact of maintaining existing services and work programmes as well as developing new facilities across the city in line with the Auckland Plan.

·      Considers that without examining the total budget and also having all the decision making information available, such as asset management plans and service levels, undertaking the review will be problematic resulting in a less than comprehensive outcome. This in turn will mean that within a short period a further review will be required unless all the relevant information is available to those undertaking the governance of Auckland Council.

Manurewa

 


 

Treatment of Great Barrier and Waiheke local boards

Recommendation

Local board(s)

·      Supports the officers position that the Great Barrier Local Board not be funded by any of the local board funding scenarios being considered  on the basis that it is impossible for the Great Barrier Local Board area to meet any of the criteria for such an approach.

·      Requests that officers urgently identify a specific proposal by which Great Barrier is to be funded and recommends that this be based on funding level which is no less than the historic 2011-2014 annual plan levels adjusted as appropriate for inflation.

·      Further notes that for the past three financial years on average 56 percent of the board’s discretionary budget has been allocated to community groups and that over 50 percent of this budget has funded infrastructure on private land which is available for public use which elsewhere in Auckland would be funded directly by Auckland Council.

·      Notes its rationale for this position being that the community relies heavily on local board funding given that with the exception of the library, all community services and facilities which would be provided or funded elsewhere in the region by Auckland Council are provided by local community groups which rely heavily on local board funding.

Great Barrier

·      Believes that the Waiheke and Great Barrier Local Boards should not be funded by any of the local board funding scenarios being considered  on the basis that it is likely to be quite difficult for it to meet any of the criteria, particularly population, likely to be adopted

·      Requests that officers identify a specific proposal by which the Waiheke Local Board is to be funded at no less than current levels for locally driven initiatives

Waiheke

The funding and service delivery differences between urban and rural local boards and the future policy must reflect this difference.

Franklin

Rodney

Recommend that the treatment of both the Waiheke and Great Barrier local boards gradually be transitioned into a self-sustainable model, as opposed to one of subsidisation.

Hibiscus and Bays

Upper Harbour

Supports Great Barrier Local Board being excluded from the funding policy because of its special attributes: a small population, large land area, and geographical isolation.

Waitakere Ranges

 


 

Budget issues to support locally driven initiatives

Recommendation

Local Board

·      Some activities seen as discretionary are in fact obligatory, eg Citizenship Ceremonies and ANZAC Day.

·      The Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area work programme budget ($225,173 opex) should be moved from the LDI category as this is part of the shared work programme with the governing body. It needs to be recognised, however, that the heritage area programme is much broader than the single WRHA programme budget line in the local board budget, and we ask that council staff work alongside the local board to identify the greater area of the programme within the programmes currently grouped under the LDI category.

Waitakere Ranges

 

Process and timelines to develop the policy

Recommendation

Local Board

·      Notes that Auckland Council is required to adopt a Local Boards Funding Policy and currently has one based predominately on legacy council service levels and funding decisions. As this has now been operational for over three years it is recognised that it is timely to review the policy based on:

experience arising from conferred, allocated and delegated decision making

asset maintenance programmes

service levels arising from adopted policies put in place to implement the Auckland Plan

lessons gained from day to day governance by local boards and the governing body.

·      Looks forward to a comprehensive review of the Local Boards Funding Policy that moves from a largely legacy informed development to one based on taking Auckland Council forward. The board believes one of the key elements of the policy, apart from being fully informed, will be the essential issues of addressing equity in asset and service provision. The board recognises that Auckland Council has moved towards a single rating system which is staged over a number of years resulting in the region being rated on the same basis. It also notes that in respect of a wide range of activities the council is progressing to form a single approach rather than being based on legacy council practices.

Manurewa

·      Recognises that Auckland Council is required to have a Local Board Funding Policy in place and is choosing to review the current policy in line with the timetable for the ten year Long Term Plan commencing 2115 -2016. It is considered that this timetable is too ambitious for the task given there is lack of significant information available on which to base decisions.

·      That the work also includes renewals along with the engagement process and the work programme to address service level equity and asset provision. That this be agreed with the local boards recognising that the ideal situation would be for local boards and the governing body progressing this together.

Papakura

 


Budget Committee

26 May 2014

 

 

AC new logo_horz_b&wAll local board recommendations on the draft Local Boards Funding Policy

 

Albert-Eden Local Board

Resolution number AE/2014/64

MOVED by Member MJ Watson, seconded by Member LA Corrick: 

That the Albert-Eden Local Board:

a.   receives the Local boards feedback on Local Boards Funding Policy review report.

b.   delegates to Chair Peter Haynes and Deputy Chair Glenda Fryer the authority to  prepare on behalf of the Board, its feedback to the Local Boards Funding Policy review following a workshop discussion.

 

Delegated feedback

That the Albert-Eden Local Board:

 

a.   Notes that council has moved towards a single rating system resulting in the region being rated on an equal basis.  However, equity in asset and service provision has not yet been addressed

b.   Notes that locally driven initiatives and local asset based services account for approximately one and ten percent, respectively, of council’s total operating costs, and recommend that further work is undertaken to determine whether 11 percent of Auckland Council’s budget is an appropriate share for local activities

c.   Support the 20 February 2014 Finance and Performance Committee resolution directing staff to consider service level equity issues for local asset based services as part of the development of the Long Term Plan and asset management plans and engage with local boards on this and report back on a timetable

d.   Request that the engagement process and the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) is agreed with the local boards

e.   Endorse the process and timelines for the Local Boards Funding Policy, provided that the work on service level equity issues (including asset provision) is progressed in parallel to the local boards funding policy

f.    Request that the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) includes a staging of the key deliverables, with prioritised asset classes and service levels for review be presented to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party on 6 May 2014

g.   Recommend that clarity on the treatment of both the Waiheke and Great Barrier local boards, and understanding the implications for the other local boards is required prior to the adoption of the policy

h.   Request that work be undertaken to:

i.    determine the appropriate amount of budget for local boards to successfully deliver upon their role, noting the current allocation is based on legacy council budgets

ii.    determine whether more activities and the corresponding funding should sit in the locally driven initiatives category

iii.   identify programme budgets to move to local board budgets as current local budgets are dominated by overhead costs with little funding for programmes.

iv.   investigate programme budgets held by the Community Development, Arts and Culture department, in particular, given the key role for local boards in community development

v.   investigate and improve the methodology of allocating overheads across the local boards as currently different approaches are used across activities

vi.   determine whether Business Improvement District (BIDs) corporate overheads should be shifted to local asset based services, as the administrative components (i.e. staffing) are allocated based on the rate collected via the BID, and agreed by the BID and the governing body, not the local boards

i.    Notes that current locally driven initiative allocations allow for minimal discretion for most local boards and any reduction will impact on existing service levels

j.    Note that each of the general rate reallocation scenarios (scenarios A, B and F) will lead to funding increases and decreases across the local boards

k.   Recommend that general rate allocation scenarios are developed (potentially phased in over time) where no local board receives any reduction in funding.

l.    Note a targeted rate is available to enhance service levels above an agreed standard service level, once standard service levels are established

m.  Recommend that:

i.    asset based service levels are funded by the general rate.

ii.    locally driven initiatives are funded via the general rate as local initiatives are core council activities, essential to cohesive communities and Auckland being the world’s most liveable city

n.   Note that local rates can lead to inequity and affordability issues and can lock in legacy council funding models

o.   Recommend that with respect to the allocation method for locally driven initiatives under general rate funding, agree that population should be the main factor, as population tends to be a key driver of the demand for services:

i.    and that a relatively small adjustment for deprivation should also be applied, as areas of deprivation have characteristics that may indicate a greater dependency on local services

ii.    and that an adjustment for geographic isolation should also be applied.

p.   Forward these resolutions to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party and the Finance and Performance Committee for their consideration

 

Devonport-Takapuna Local Board

Resolution number DT/2014/81

MOVED by Chairperson MA Cohen, seconded by Deputy Chairperson JM Bergin: 

That the Devonport-Takapuna Local Board:

a.   notes that Auckland Council has moved towards a single rating system resulting in the region being rated on the same basis, however, equity in asset and service provision has not yet been addressed.

b.   notes that locally driven initiatives and local asset based services account for approximately one and ten percent, respectively, of Auckland Council’s total operating costs, and recommend that further work is undertaken to determine whether 11 percent of Auckland Council’s budget is an appropriate share for local activities.

c.   supports the 20 February 2014 Finance and Performance Committee resolution directing staff to consider service level equity issues for local asset based services as part of the development of the Long Term Plan and asset management plans, and engage with local boards on this and report back on a timetable.

d.   requests that the engagement process and the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) is agreed with local boards.

e.   endorses the process and timelines for the Local Boards Funding Policy, provided that the work on service level equity issues (including asset provision) is progressed in parallel to the Local Boards Funding Policy.

f.    requests that the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) includes a staging of the key deliverables, with prioritised asset classes and service levels for review be presented to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party on 6 May 2014.

g.   recommends that clarity on the treatment of both the Waiheke and Great Barrier local boards, and understanding the implications for the other local boards is required prior to the adoption of the Local Boards Funding Policy.

h.   requests that work be undertaken to:

i.    determine the appropriate amount of budget for local boards to successfully deliver upon their role, noting the current allocation is based on legacy council budgets.

ii.    determine whether more activities and the corresponding funding should sit in the locally driven initiatives category.

iii.   identify programme budgets to move to local board budgets, as current local budgets are dominated by overhead and direct Auckland Council staffing costs with little funding for programmes.

iv.   investigate programme budgets held by the Community Development, Arts and Culture department in particular, given the key role for local boards in community development.

v.   investigate and improve the methodology of allocating overheads and direct Auckland Council staffing costs across the local boards as currently different approaches are used across activities.

vi.   determine whether Business Improvement District (BIDs) corporate overheads should be shifted to local asset based services, as the administrative components (i.e. staffing) are allocated based on the rate collected via the BID, and agreed by the BID and the governing body, not the local boards.

i.    notes that current locally driven initiative allocations allow for minimal discretion for most local boards and any reduction will impact on existing service levels.

j.    notes that each of the general rate reallocation scenarios (scenarios A, B and F) will lead to funding increases and decreases across the local boards.

k.   recommends that general rate allocation scenarios are developed where no local board receives any reduction in funding for consideration.

l.    notes a targeted rate is already available as provided by legislation, but should not be relied upon to enhance service levels above an agreed standard service level once standard service levels are established.

m.  expresses its concern that it may have to impose a targeted rate to retain current service levels in the event that the governing body sets the new regional service levels at a level that is below the current service level in the Devonport-Takapuna Local Board area.

n.   recommends that:

i.    asset based service levels are funded by the general rate.

ii.    locally driven initiatives are funded via the general rate as local initiatives are core council activities, essential to cohesive communities and Auckland being the world’s most liveable city.

o.   notes that the proposed local rates are an inadequate funding model that can lead to inequity and affordability issues.

p.   recommends that, with respect to the allocation methodology for locally driven initiatives under general rate funding, agrees that population should be the main factor, as population tends to be a key driver of the demand for services, and:

i.    that the effect of population include resident population within a local board area as well as non-resident population (e.g. working, studying, recreating and visiting populations).

ii.    that an adjustment for geographic isolation should also be applied.

iii.   advise Auckland Council that if it decides to include deprivation in any funding formula, a corresponding adjustment for amount of rates collected should also be applied.

q.   forwards these resolutions to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party and the Finance and Performance Committee for their consideration.

 

Franklin Local Board

Resolution number FR/2014/64

MOVED by Chairperson AP Baker, seconded by Member BS Crompton:

a.   That the Franklin Local Board considers the policy framework for the Local Board Funding Policy Review and provides the following formal feedback on the issues discussed and other associated issues.

b.   That the Franklin Local Board notes that council has moved towards a single rating system resulting in the region being rated on an equal basis.  However, equity in asset and service provision has not yet been addressed.

c.   That the Franklin Local Board requests that if no clear policy or direction is able to be achieved that addresses equity in asset and service provision prior to the adoption of the Draft Long Term Plan then status quo remains in place until such a policy or direction is achieved to avoid confusion and possible greater inequities.

d.   That the Franklin Local Board recommends that further work be undertaken prior to the draft policy being confirmed on local asset based services to determine:

i.    levels of service required to be funded from general rates to enable regional consistency

ii.    identify gaps in network provision and funding inequities

iii.   the appropriate mechanism to fund these activities (i.e. the general rate, local rate, targeted rate or a combination of all)

iv.   the impacts any change will have on the decision-making allocation

v.   determine the appropriate level of budget for local boards to successfully deliver upon their role, noting the current allocation is based on legacy council budgets

vi.   determine whether more activities and the corresponding funding should sit in the locally driven initiatives category

vii.  identify programme budgets to move to local board budgets as current local budgets are dominated by overhead costs with little funding for programmes

viii. investigate and identify programme budgets held by the Community Development, Arts and Culture department, in particular, given the key role for local boards in community development

ix.   investigate and improve the methodology of allocating overheads across the local boards as currently different approaches are used across activities

e.   That the Franklin Local Board recommends, where appropriate and in accordance with recommendation (d) above, that Local Board funding be supported by a local rate (based on further work), as this will:

i.    provide transparency to local communities as they will understand the local services they are funding

ii.    make local boards more accountable for the decisions they make in providing local services to their communities

iii.   create greater relevancy for Local Board Plans and community aspirations, by giving local boards great control of their budgets and determining delivery of local services.

f.    That the Franklin Local Board supports the 20 February 2014 Finance and Performance Committee resolution directing staff to consider service level equity issues for local asset based services as part of the development of the Long Term Plan and asset management plans and engage with local boards on this and report back on a timetable, but notes recommendation (c) above.

g.   That the Franklin Local Board requests as a priority the re-establishment of a full Local Board Funding Policy Political Working Party membership, with the governing body and local board members, to schedule a number of key meetings prior to the adoption of the draft policy to ensure robust and full discussion of the local boards’ views.

h.   That the Franklin Local Board requests that work on service level equity issues is progressed in parallel to the Local Board Funding Policy and a work programme agreed with the local boards.

i.    That the Franklin Local Board requests that work be undertaken prior to the draft policy being confirmed to:

j.    That the Franklin Local Board notes that current locally driven initiative allocations allow for minimal discretion for most local boards and any reduction will impact on existing service levels.

k.   That the Franklin Local Board notes that each of the general rate reallocation scenarios (scenarios A, B and F in the proposed policy) will lead to funding increases and decreases across the local boards.

l.    That the Franklin Local Board supports retaining the ability for local boards to propose a targeted rate to enhance service levels above an agreed standard service level, once standard service levels are established.

m.  That the Franklin Local Board notes that while local rates can lead to inequity and affordability issues, it is unlikely that any funding model will provide for regional equity or address affordability issues if council is to achieve the aspirations of the Auckland Plan.

n.   That the Franklin Local Board recommends that if their feedback in regard to local rates is not accepted in the draft Local Board Funding Policy that the allocation methodology for locally driven initiatives under general rate funding should have population as the main factor, as population tends to be a key driver of the demand for services:

i.    and that an adjustment for deprivation should also be applied, as areas of deprivation have characteristics that may indicate a greater dependency on local services and this should be no greater than 10%.

ii.    and that an adjustment for geographic isolation should be applied at a level no less than deprivation.

iii.   and that an adjustment for growth should also be applied to ensure that local boards who are experiencing growth has this factored into any locally driven initiatives allocation.

o.   That the Franklin Local Board recommends clarity on:

i.    the treatment of both the Waiheke and Great Barrier local boards, and an understanding of the implications for the other local boards is required prior to the adoption of the policy.

ii.    the funding and service delivery differences between urban and rural local boards and the future policy must reflect this difference.

p.   That the Franklin Local Board notes that locally driven initiatives and local asset based services account for approximately one and ten percent, respectively, of council’s total operating costs, and recommends that further work is undertaken to determine whether 11 percent of Auckland Council’s budget is an appropriate share for local activities.

q.   That the Franklin Local Board forward these resolutions to the Local Board Funding Policy Political Working Party and the Finance and Performance Committee for their consideration.

 

Great Barrier Local Board

Resolution number GBI/2014/44

MOVED by Chairperson IM Fordham, seconded by Deputy Chairperson SP Daly: 

That the Great Barrier Local Board:

a.   Notes that although Auckland Council has moved towards a single rating system resulting in the region being rated on an equal basis, equity in asset and service provision has not yet been addressed.

b.   Notes that locally driven initiatives over which local boards have decision making authority account for less than one percent of council’s total operating costs and that up to 40 percent of this amount is in general budgets such as staff allocations and overheads over which local boards have no authority.

c.   Considers that the principle of equitable funding for all local boards which is the basis of pursuing the local board funding policy can never be achieved if boards have full decision making authority over less than one percent of total operating costs and that this percentage is totally inadequate if the co-governance model Auckland Council is operating under is to be effective and given the scope and importance of work delivered by local boards and the extensive resources already applied by Auckland Council to this delivery.

d.   Requests that further work be undertaken to address service level equity issues and to increase local board funding to a realistic level funded from reallocations from the local asset based services area to the locally driven initiatives area for consideration and approval by local boards as a prerequisite to implementation of the local board funding policy.

e.   Supports the officers position that the Great Barrier Local Board not be funded by any of the local board funding scenarios being considered  on the basis that it is impossible for the Great Barrier Local Board area to meet any of the criteria for such an approach.

f.    Requests that officers urgently identify a specific proposal by which Great Barrier is to be funded and recommends that this be based on funding level which is no less than the historic 2011-2014 annual plan levels adjusted as appropriate for inflation.

g.   Notes its rationale for this position being that the community relies heavily on local board funding given that with the exception of the library, all community services and facilities which would be provided or funded elsewhere in the region by Auckland Council are provided by local community groups which rely heavily on local board funding.

h.   Further notes that for the past three financial years on average 56 percent of the board’s discretionary budget has been allocated to community groups and that over 50 percent of this budget has funded infrastructure on private land which is available for public use which elsewhere in Auckland would be funded directly by Auckland Council.

i.    Notes that officers current recommendations will lead to funding increases and decreases across the local boards and recommends that general rate allocation scenarios are developed where no local board receives any reduction in funding

j.    Recommends that both asset based service levels and locally driven initiatives are funded by the general rate as they are core council activities, essential to cohesive communities and Auckland being the world’s most liveable city.

k.   Notes that a local rate is not an option for Great Barrier as the island’s small population would mean that insufficient funds would be generated to achieve the aim of a local rate.

l.    Recommends that with the exception of the Great Barrier and Waiheke local board areas, funding for locally driven initiatives should be based on population with adjustments for deprivation, geographic isolation and the amount of rates collected being applied as appropriate.

m.  Forwards these resolutions to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party and the Finance and Performance Committee for their consideration and to the Waiheke Local Board for its information.

 

Henderson-Massey Local Board

Resolution number HM/2014/69

MOVED by Member WW Flaunty, seconded by Member BA Brady: 

That the Henderson-Massey Local Board:

a.   Does not support local rates

b.   Notes a targeted rate is already available to enhance service levels above an agreed standard service level, once standard service levels are established

c.   Note that local rates can lead to inequity and affordability issues.

d.   Note that local rates could lock in legacy council funding models

e.   Notes that under the policy a single Board cannot add a budget line to the locally driven initiatives fund as the entire budget line would be divided between all 21 local boards, leaving the originating board unable to fund the project. The Board believes this will reduce the ability of individual boards to act strategically and will make operation of the policy unwieldy.

f.    Notes that staff have advised the board that the figures in the local board policy review document are likely to change.

g.   Points out that if the figures in the local board funding policy review document change, the review document may not represent the final outcomes at all.

h.   The board is disappointed that the information presented to decision makers is constantly changing. Presentations appear to be tailored to specific audiences, with important information being omitted or changed. Feedback is difficult to provide when the content changes regularly.

i.    Notes that the 10% weighting for deprivation in the rate allocation scenarios does not make any discernible difference to funding for deprived areas. A higher weighting for deprivation is required to ensure deprivation issues are realistically addressed.

j.    Requests again that further general rate reallocation scenarios increasing the deprivation percentage in 10% intervals to 50% are presented to the boards.

k.   Notes that council has moved towards a single rating system resulting in the region being rated on an equal basis.  However, equity in asset and service provision has not yet been addressed

l.    Notes that locally driven initiatives represent 1% of Auckland Council opex and local asset based services account for 10% of Auckland Council opex, and recommends that an independent review is undertaken to determine whether 11 percent of Auckland Council’s budget is an appropriate share for local activities

m.  Supports the 20 February 2014 Finance and Performance Committee resolution directing staff to consider service level equity issues for local asset based services as part of the development of the Long Term Plan and asset management plans by engaging with local boards on this and reporting back on a timetable

n.   Requests that the engagement process and the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) is agreed with the local boards

o.   Endorse the process and timelines for the Local Boards Funding Policy, provided that the work on service level equity issues (including asset provision) is progressed in parallel to the local boards funding policy

p.   Request that the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) includes a staging of the key deliverables, with prioritised asset classes and service levels for review be presented to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party on 6 May 2014

q.   Requests that work be undertaken to:

i.    determine the appropriate amount of budget for local boards to successfully deliver their role, noting the current allocation is based on legacy council budgets

ii.    determine whether more activities and the corresponding funding should sit in the locally driven initiatives category

iii.   identify programme budgets to move to local board budgets as current local budgets are dominated by overhead costs with little funding for programmes.

iv.   Investigate and reallocate programme budgets held by the Community Development, Arts, Events, Community Safety, Planning, Economic Development, Streetscape and Environmental Services, in particular, given the statutory and key role for local boards in all these areas.

v.   investigate and improve the methodology of allocating overheads across the local boards as currently different approaches are used across activities

vi.   determine whether Business Improvement District (BIDs) corporate overheads should be shifted to local asset based services, as the administrative components (i.e. staffing) are allocated based on the rate collected via the BID, and agreed by the BID and the governing body, not the local boards

r.    Notes that current locally driven initiative allocations allow for minimal discretion for most local boards and any reduction will impact on existing service levels

s.   Note that each of the general rate reallocation scenarios (scenarios A, B and F) will lead to funding increases and decreases across the local boards

t.    Strongly recommends that:

i.    asset based service levels are funded by the general rate.

ii.    locally driven initiatives are funded via the general rate as local initiatives are core council activities, essential to cohesive communities and Auckland being the world’s most liveable city

u.   Recommend that with respect to the allocation methodology for locally driven initiatives under general rate funding, agree that population should be the main factor, as population tends to be a key driver of the demand for services.

v.   An adjustment for deprivation should also be applied, as areas of deprivation have characteristics that may indicate a greater dependency on local services

w.   An adjustment for geographic area should also be applied

x.   Prefers scenario B of the options provided, that takes account of population, deprivation and geographic land area however, the board recommends that further work be done to develop a more impactful weighting for deprivation.

y.   Forward these resolutions to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party and the Finance and Performance Committee for their consideration.


 

Hibiscus and Bays Local Board

Resolution number HB/2014/68

MOVED by Chairperson JG Parfitt, seconded by Member J Fitzgerald: 

That the Hibiscus and Bays Local Board:

a.   do not support the use of local rates to fund core council services, e.g. local driven initiatives and asset based services noting that:

i.    local rates can lead to inequity and affordability issues and can lock in legacy council funding models.

b.   note that locally driven initiatives and local asset based services account for approximately one and ten percent, respectively, of council’s total operating costs, and recommend that further work is undertaken to determine whether 11 percent of Auckland Council’s budget is an appropriate share for local activities, as the Hibiscus and Bays Local Board believe that 11 percent is not enough.

c.   support the 20 February 2014 Finance and Performance Committee resolution directing staff to consider service level equity issues for local asset based services as part of the development of the Long-term Plan and asset management plans and engage with local boards on this and report back on a timetable.

d.   request that the engagement process and the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) is agreed with the local boards and includes a staging of the key deliverables, with prioritised asset classes and service levels for review, be presented to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party on 6 May 2014.

e.   endorse the process and timelines for the Local Boards Funding Policy, provided that the work on service level equity issues (including asset provision) is progressed in parallel to the local boards funding policy.

f.    recommend that the treatment of both the Waiheke and Great Barrier local boards gradually be transitioned into a self sustainable model, as opposed to one of subsidisation.

g.   request that work be undertaken to:

i.    determine the appropriate amount of budget for local boards to successfully deliver upon their role, noting the current allocation is based on legacy council budgets and are dominated by overhead costs with little funding for programmes;

ii.    determine whether more activities and the corresponding funding should sit in the locally driven initiatives category;

iii.   investigate and identify programme budgets held by departments and move these to local board budgets, given the key role for local boards in community development;

iv.   investigate and improve the methodology of allocating overheads across the local boards as currently different approaches are used across activities;

v.   determine whether Business Improvement District (BIDs) corporate overheads should be shifted to local asset based services, as the administrative components (i.e. staffing) are allocated based on the rate collected via the BID and agreed by the BID and the governing body, not the local boards.

h.   recommend that general rate allocation scenarios are developed, as current locally driven initiative allocations allow for minimal discretion for most local boards and any reduction will impact on existing service levels.

i.    recommend that:

i.    asset based service levels are funded by the general rate;

ii.    locally driven initiatives are funded via the general rate as local initiatives are core council activities, essential to cohesive communities and Auckland being the world’s most liveable city.

j.    recommend that with respect to the allocation methodology for locally driven initiatives under general rate funding, agree that population should be the main factor, as population tends to be a key driver of the demand for services:

i.    an adjustment for rates collected should be applied;

ii.    that the local board does not support any model utilising deprivation;

iii.   an adjustment for geographic isolation should be applied and be no greater than 10%;

iv.   an adjustment for growth should also be applied to ensure that local boards who are experiencing high growth have this factored into any locally driven initiatives allocation.

k.   forward these resolutions to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party and the Finance and Performance Committee for their consideration.

l.    delegate to the Finance Portfolio Holder, Lisa Whyte, to finalise the local board’s feedback to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party and Governing Body as required.

 

Howick Local Board

Resolution number HW/2014/44

MOVED by Member L Schwaner, seconded by Member RD Wichman: 

That the Howick Local Board:

a.   Notes that council has moved towards a single rating system resulting in the region being rated on an equal basis.  However, equity in asset and service provision has not yet been addressed.

b.   Notes that the current local board budgets are a cut of legacy council budgets and have not been built to reflect the role of local boards envisaged in legislation.

c.   Supports the 20 February 2014 Finance and Performance Committee resolution directing staff to consider service level equity issues for local asset based services as part of the development of the Long Term Plan and asset management plans and engage with local boards on this and report back on a timetable.

d.   Endorses the process and timelines for the Local Boards Funding Policy, provided that the work on service level equity issues is progressed in parallel to the local boards funding policy and the work programme is agreed with the local boards.

e.   Requests that a work programme including a staging of the key deliverables, with prioritised asset classes and service levels for review be presented to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party on 6 May 2014.

f.    Recommends that clarity on the treatment of both the Waiheke and Great Barrier local boards, and understanding the implications for the other local boards is required prior to the adoption of the policy.

g.   Notes that each of the general rate reallocation scenarios (scenarios A, B and F) will lead to funding increases and decreases across the local boards.

h.   Recommends that general rate allocation scenarios are developed that minimise the change in funding for each local board by increasing the total allocation of funds for locally driven initiatives, and to ensure that no local board receives any reduction in funding.

i.    Supports a local rate to enhance service levels above an agreed standard service level, once standard service levels are established.

j.    Recommends that:

i.    asset based service levels are funded by the general rate.

ii.    locally driven initiatives are funded via the general rate as local initiatives are core council activities, essential to cohesive communities and Auckland being the world’s most liveable city.

k.   Agrees that with respect to the allocation methodology for locally driven initiatives under general rate funding, that population should be the main factor, as population tends to be a key driver of the demand for services as well as the following:

i.    that a weighting for deprivation should also be applied, as areas of deprivation have characteristics that may indicate a greater dependency on local services

ii.    that a weighting for geographic isolation should also be applied

iii.   that rates collected should also be applied.

l.    Forwards these resolutions to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party and the Finance and Performance Committee for their consideration.

m.  delegates the Chair and Deputy Chair authority to forward any amendments or additional resolutions to the Political Working Party.

 

Kaipatiki Local Board

Resolution number KT/2014/66

MOVED by Chairperson K McIntyre, seconded by Member D Grant: 

That the Kaipātiki Local Board:

a.   delegate to Chairperson K McIntyre, Deputy Chairperson A Hartley and Member L Pigg, to approve the resolutions based on the tabled document, “including any changes that may arise from further work”, and to provide formal feedback on the Local Boards Funding Policy Review and report back to the board.

 

Delegated feedback

That the Kaipātiki Local Board:

a.   Notes that council has moved towards a single rating system resulting in the region being rated on an equal basis.  However, equity in asset and service provision has not yet been addressed

b.   Notes that locally driven initiatives and local asset based services account for approximately one and ten percent, respectively, of council’s total operating costs, and recommend that further work is undertaken to determine whether 11 percent of Auckland Council’s budget is an appropriate share for local activities

c.   Support the 20 February 2014 Finance and Performance Committee resolution directing staff to consider service level equity issues for local asset based services as part of the development of the Long Term Plan and asset management plans and engage with local boards on this and report back on a timetable.

d.   Request that the engagement process and the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) is agreed with the local boards

e.   Endorse the process and timelines for the Local Boards Funding Policy, provided that the work on service level equity issues (including asset provision costs) is progressed in parallel to the local boards funding policy

f.    Notes that this work will need to establish the catchment of the asset based services and identify where the catchments cross local board boundaries. The principle should be that the budget for an asset lies in the local board for where the asset is located. This may result in significant differences in local board budgets for local asset based services.

g.   Request that the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) includes a staging of the key deliverables, with prioritised asset classes and service levels for review be presented to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party on 6 May 2014

h.   Recommend that clarity on the treatment of both the Waiheke and Great Barrier local boards, and understanding the implications for the other local boards is required prior to the adoption of the policy

i.    Request that work be undertaken to:

i.    determine the appropriate amount of budget for local boards to successfully deliver upon their role, noting the current allocation is based on legacy council budgets

ii.    determine whether more activities and the corresponding funding should sit in the locally driven initiatives category

iii.   identify programme budgets to move to local board budgets as current local budgets are dominated by overhead costs with little funding for programmes.

iv.   investigate programme budgets held by the Community Development, Arts and Culture department, in particular, given the key role for local boards in community development

v.   investigate and improve the methodology of allocating overheads across the local boards as currently different approaches are used across activities

vi.   determine whether Business Improvement District (BIDs) corporate overheads should be shifted to local asset based services, as the administrative components (i.e. staffing) are allocated based on the rate collected via the BID, and agreed by the BID and the governing body, not the local boards

j.    Notes that current locally driven initiative allocations allow for minimal discretion for most local boards and any reduction will impact on existing service levels

k.   Note that each of the general rate reallocation scenarios (scenarios A, B and F) will lead to funding increases and decreases across the local boards

l.    Recommend that general rate allocation scenarios are developed (phased in over time via an equity transition fund) and that no local board receives any reduction in funding.

m.  Note a targeted rate is available to enhance service levels above an agreed standard service level, once standard service levels are established

n.   Recommend that:

i.    asset based service levels are funded by the general rate.

ii.    locally driven initiatives are funded via the general rate as local initiatives are core council activities, essential to cohesive communities and Auckland being the world’s most liveable city

o.   Note that local rates can lead to inequity and affordability issues and can lock in legacy council funding models

p.   Recommend that with respect to the allocation method for locally driven initiatives under general rate funding, agree that population should be the main factor, as population tends to be a key driver of the demand for services. Population should be reviewed annually to allow for growth:

i.    and that an adjustment for geographic isolation should also be applied

q.   Forward these resolutions to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party and the Finance and Performance Committee for their consideration

 


Mangere-Otahuhu Local Board

Resolution number MO/2014/64

MOVED by Member CF O'Brien, seconded by Member EP Skelton: 

That the Māngere-Ōtāhuhu Local Board:

a.   Notes that council has moved towards a single rating system resulting in the region being rated on an equal basis.  However, equity in asset and service provision has not yet been addressed.

b.   Notes that locally driven initiatives and local asset based services account for approximately one and ten percent, respectively, of council’s total operating costs, and recommend that further work is undertaken to determine whether 11 percent of Auckland Council’s budget is an appropriate share for local activities.

c.   Support the 20 February 2014 Finance and Performance Committee resolution directing staff to consider service level equity issues for local asset based services as part of the development of the Long Term Plan and asset management plans and engage with local boards on this and report back on a timetable

d.   Request that the engagement process and the work programme to address service level equity issues and asset provision is agreed with the local boards.

e.   Endorse the process and timelines for the Local Boards Funding Policy, provided that the work on service level equity issues and asset provision is progressed in parallel to the local boards funding policy.

f.    Request that the work programme to address service level equity issues and asset provision includes a staging of the key deliverables, with prioritised asset classes and service levels for review be presented to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party on 6 May 2014.

g.   Recommend that clarity on the treatment of both the Waiheke and Great Barrier local boards, and understanding the implications for the other local boards is required prior to the adoption of the policy

h.   Request that work be undertaken to:

i.    determine whether more activities and the corresponding funding should sit in the locally driven initiatives category.

ii.    understand which council business units have corporate overheads, activity and programming budgets that have a direct relationship with the role of local boards and their decision-making (in particular budgets held by the Community Development, Arts and Culture department), with a view to shift these budgets to local boards, or increase their ability to influence and change budgets to deliver services that reflect their communities.

iii.   investigate whether Business Improvement District (BIDs) corporate overheads should be shifted to local asset based services, as the administrative components (i.e. staffing) are allocated based on the rate collected via the BID, and agreed by the BID and the governing body, not the local boards.

i.    Support work to determine the appropriate amount of budget for local boards to successfully deliver upon their role, noting the current allocation is based on legacy council budgets.

j.    Notes that current locally driven initiative allocations allow for minimal discretion for most local boards and any reduction will impact on existing service levels.

k.   Note that each of the general rate reallocation scenarios (scenarios A, B and G) will lead to funding increases and decreases across the local boards

l.    Recommend that general rate allocation scenarios are developed where no local board receives any reduction in funding for consideration.

m.  Note a targeted rate is available to enhance service levels above an agreed standard service level, once standard service levels are established.

n.   Recommend that:

i.    asset based service levels are funded by the general rate.

ii.    locally driven initiatives are funded via the general rate as local initiatives are core council activities, essential to cohesive communities and Auckland being the world’s most liveable city.

o.   Note that local rates can lead to inequity and affordability issues and can lock in legacy council funding models.

p.   Recommend that with respect to the allocation method for locally driven initiatives under general rate funding, agree that population should be the main factor, as population tends to be a key driver of the demand for services:

i.    and that an adjustment for deprivation should also be applied, as areas of deprivation have characteristics that may indicate a greater dependency on local services.

ii.    and that an adjustment for geographic isolation should also be applied to rural areas (Rodney & Franklin).

q.   Forward these resolutions to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party and the Finance and Performance Committee for their consideration.

 

Manurewa Local Board

Resolution number MR/2014/69

MOVED by Chairperson AM Dalton, seconded by Member AL Cunningham-Marino: 

a.   That the Manurewa Local Board delegate authority to the Chairperson, Angela Dalton, and Deputy Chair, Simeon Brown, to draft feedback on the Local Boards Funding Policy Review noting the feedback is required by 30 April 2014.

 

Delegated feedback

 

That the Manurewa Local Board

a.   notes that Auckland Council is required to adopt a Local Boards Funding Policy and currently has one based predominately on legacy council service levels and funding decisions. As this has now been operational for over three years it is recognised that it is timely to review the policy based on:

i.    experience arising from conferred, allocated and delegated decision making

ii.    asset maintenance programmes

iii.   service levels arising from adopted policies put in place to implement the Auckland Plan

iv.   lessons gained from day to day governance by local boards and the governing body.

b.   believes the structure of the Local Boards Funding Policy Review should commence by an examination of the total Auckland Council budget and what is required for local boards and the governing body to undertake their respective governance roles balanced against revenue projections. This should take into account the wider planning and budgetary process and the financial impact of maintaining existing services and work programmes as well as developing new facilities across the city in line with the Auckland Plan.

c.   considers that without examining the total budget and also having all the decision making information available, such as asset management plans and service levels, undertaking the review will be problematic resulting in a less than comprehensive outcome. This in turn will mean that within a short period a further review will be required unless all the relevant information is available to those undertaking the governance of Auckland Council.

d.   now looks forward to a comprehensive review of the Local Boards Funding Policy that moves from a largely legacy informed development to one based on taking Auckland Council forward. The board believes one of the key elements of the policy, apart from being fully informed, will be the essential issues of addressing equity in asset and service provision. The board recognises that Auckland Council has moved towards a single rating system which is staged over a number of years resulting in the region being rated on the samel basis. It also notes that in respect of a wide range of activities the council is progressing to form a single approach rather than being based on legacy council practices. .

e.   recommends that further work is undertaken to determine whether a higher percentage of Auckland Council’s budget would be a more appropriate share for local activities given that locally driven initiatives and local asset based services account for approximately one and ten per cent, respectively, of council’s total operating costs.

f.    supports the 20 February 2014 Finance and Performance Committee resolution directing staff to consider service level equity issues for local asset based services as part of the development of the long-term plan and asset management plans as well as engaging with local boards and reporting back on a timetable. In supporting the resolution it is important to highlight that the Local Boards Funding Policy Review is not solely relevant to local boards but to all involved in the governance of Auckland Council. This reinforces the need for both the governing body and local boards to develop and progress the policy together. As a result the engagement process and the work programme to address service level equity issues and asset provision should be agreed by both the governing body and the local boards.

g.   endorses the process and timelines for the Local Boards Funding Policy Review, provided that the work on service level equity issues and asset provision is progressed in parallel. The work programme to address service level equity issues and asset provision must include a staging of the key deliverables, with prioritised asset classes and service levels for review.  This would be presented to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party on 6 May 2014.

h.   identifies that clarity on the treatment of both the Waiheke and Great Barrier Local Boards, and understanding the implications for the other local boards is required prior to the adoption of the policy.

i.    emphasises the need for additional areas of work to be undertaken to help with the comprehensive nature of the review and that all involved in the governance of Auckland Council have the information required for good quality decision making. Additional work is required on the following areas:

i.    determine whether more activities and the corresponding funding should sit in the locally driven initiatives category

ii.    understand which council business units have corporate overheads, activity and programming budgets that have a direct relationship with the role of local boards and their decision-making (in particular budgets held by the Community Development, Arts and Culture department), with a view to shift these budgets to local boards, or increase their ability to influence and change budgets to deliver services that reflect their community needs

iii.   determine whether Business Improvement District (BIDs) corporate overheads should be shifted to local asset based services, as the administrative components (i.e. staffing) are allocated based on the rate collected via the BID, and agreed by the BID and the governing body, not the local boards

iv.   determine the appropriate amount of budget for local boards to successfully deliver upon their role, noting the current allocation is based on legacy council budgets. In doing so the principal that the resources follow the decision making that is either conferred by legislation, within the approved allocation of decision making or has been delegated to local boards by the governing body. 

j.    notes that current locally driven initiative allocations allow for minimal discretion for most local boards and any reduction will impact on existing service levels.

k.   recommends that an alternative be considered that addresses a general rate allocation where no local board receives any reduction in funding but additional operational costs are made available based on population and equity. The board notes that each of the general rate reallocation scenarios (scenarios A, B and F) will lead to funding increases and decreases across the local boards.

l.    notes a targeted rate is available to enhance service levels above an agreed standard service level, once standard service levels are established.

m.  notes that local rates can lead to inequity and affordability issues and run a significant risk of locking in legacy council funding models, where historical under investment in some areas would continue.

n.   recommends that:

i.    asset based service levels are funded by the general rate.

ii.    locally driven initiatives are funded via the general rate as local initiatives are core council activities, essential to cohesive communities and Auckland being the world’s most liveable city

o.   recommends that with respect to the allocation method for locally driven initiatives under general rate funding, that population should be the main factor and that an adjustment for deprivation should also be applied, as areas of deprivation have characteristics that may indicate a greater dependency on local services

p.   forward this feedback to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party and the Finance and Performance Committee for their consideration

 

Maungakiekie-Tamaki Local Board

Resolution number MT/2014/7

MOVED by Chairperson SD Randall, seconded by Deputy Chairperson CL Makoare: 

That the Maungakiekie-Tāmaki Local Board:

a.   notes that council has moved towards a single rating system resulting in the region being rated on an equal basis.  However, equity in asset and service provision has not yet been addressed.

b.   notes that locally driven initiatives and local asset based services account for approximately one and ten percent, respectively, of council’s total operating costs, and recommend that further work is undertaken to determine whether 11 percent of Auckland Council’s budget is an appropriate share for local activities.

c.   supports the 20 February 2014 Finance and Performance Committee resolution directing staff to consider service level equity issues for local asset based services as part of the development of the Long Term Plan and asset management plans and engage with local boards on this and report back on a timetable.

d.   requests that the engagement process and the work programme to address service level equity issues and asset provision is agreed with the local boards.

e.   endorses the process and timelines for the Local Boards Funding Policy, provided that the work on service level equity issues and asset provision is progressed in parallel to the local boards funding policy.

f.    requests that the work programme to address service level equity issues and asset provision includes a staging of the key deliverables, with prioritised asset classes and service levels for review be presented to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party on 6 May 2014.

g.   recommends that clarity on the treatment of both the Waiheke and Great Barrier local boards, and understanding the implications for the other local boards is required prior to the adoption of the policy.

h.   requests that work be undertaken to:

i.    determine whether more activities and the corresponding funding should sit in the locally driven initiatives category.

ii.    understand which council business units have corporate overheads, activity and programming budgets that have a direct relationship with the role of local boards and their decision-making (in particular budgets held by the Community Development, Arts and Culture department), with a view to shift these budgets to local boards, or increase their ability to influence and change budgets to deliver services that reflect their communities.

iii.   determine whether Business Improvement District (BIDs) corporate overheads should be shifted to local asset based services, as the administrative components (i.e. staffing) are allocated based on the rate collected via the BID, and agreed by the BID and the governing body, not the local boards.

i.    supports work to determine the appropriate amount of budget for local boards to successfully deliver upon their role, noting the current allocation is based on legacy council budgets.

j.    notes that current locally driven initiative allocations allow for minimal discretion for most local boards and any reduction will impact on existing service levels.

k.   notes that each of the general rate reallocation scenarios (scenarios A, B and F) will lead to funding increases and decreases across the local boards.

l.    recommends that general rate allocation scenarios are developed where no local board receives any reduction in funding for consideration.

m.  notes that a targeted rate is available to enhance service levels above an agreed standard service level, once standard service levels are established

n.   recommends that:

i.    asset based service levels are funded by the general rate

ii.    locally driven initiatives are funded via the general rate as local initiatives are core council activities, essential to cohesive communities and Auckland being the world’s most liveable city.

o.   notes that local rates can lead to inequity and affordability issues and can lock in legacy council funding models.

p.   recommends that with respect to the allocation method for locally driven initiatives under general rate funding, agree that population should be the main factor, as population tends to be a key driver of the demand for services: [other options for boards to consider including]

i.    and that an adjustment for deprivation should also be applied, as areas of deprivation have characteristics that may indicate a greater dependency on local services.

ii.    and that an adjustment for geographic isolation should also be applied.

q.   forward these resolutions to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party and the Finance and Performance Committee for their consideration.

 

Orakei Local Board

Resolution number OR/2014/21

MOVED by Chairperson DEC Simpson, seconded by Member CRJ Davis: 

That the Orākei Local Board:

a.   delegates authority to Chairperson Simpson and Deputy Chairperson Thomas to prepare the Board’s feedback on the Local Board Funding Policy by 17 April 2014.

 

Delegated feedback

That the Orakei Local Board:

a.   Notes that council has moved towards a single rating system resulting in the region being rated on an equal basis, however, equity in asset and service provision has not yet been addressed.


b.   Notes that locally driven initiatives and local asset based services account for approximately one and ten percent, respectively, of council’s total operating costs, and recommend that further work is undertaken to determine whether 11 percent of Auckland Council’s budget is an appropriate share for local activities.

c.   Supports the 20 February 2014 Finance and Performance Committee resolution directing staff to consider service level equity issues for local asset based services as part of the development of the Long Term Plan and asset management plans and engage with local boards on this and report back on a timetable.

d.   Requests that the engagement process and the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) is agreed with the local boards.

e.   Endorses the process and timelines for the Local Boards Funding Policy, provided that the work on service level equity issues (including asset provision) is progressed in parallel to the local boards funding policy.

f.    Requests that the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) includes a staging of the key deliverables, with prioritised asset classes and service levels for review be presented to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party on 6 May 2014.

g.   Recommends that clarity on the treatment of both the Waiheke and Great Barrier local boards, and understanding the implications for the other local boards is required prior to the adoption of the policy

h.   Requests that work be undertaken to:

i.    determine the appropriate amount of budget for local boards to successfully deliver upon their role, noting the current allocation is largely based on legacy council budgets.

ii.    determine whether more activities and the corresponding funding should sit in the locally driven initiatives category.

iii.   identify programme budgets to move to local board budgets as current local budgets are dominated by overhead costs with little funding for programmes.

iv.   investigate programme budgets held by the Community Development, Arts and Culture department, in particular, given the key role for local boards in community development.

v.   investigate and improve the methodology of allocating overheads across the local boards as currently different approaches are used across activities.

vi.   determine whether Business Improvement District (BIDs) corporate overheads should be shifted to local asset based services, as the administrative components (i.e. staffing) are allocated based on the rate collected via the BID, and agreed by the BID and the governing body, not the local boards.

i.    Notes that current locally driven initiative allocations allow for minimal discretion for most local boards and any reduction will impact on existing service levels.

j.    Notes that each of the general rate reallocation scenarios (scenarios A, B and F) will lead to funding increases and decreases across the local boards.

k.   Recommends that general rate allocation scenarios are developed where no local board receives any reduction in funding.

l.    Notes a targeted rate is available to enhance service levels above an agreed standard service level, once standard service levels are established.


m.  Recommends that:

i.    asset based service levels are funded by the general rate.

ii.    locally driven initiatives are funded via the general rate as local initiatives are core council activities, essential to cohesive communities and Auckland being the world’s most liveable city.

n.   Recommend that with respect to the allocation method for locally driven initiatives under general rate funding, agree that population should be the main factor, as population tends to be a key driver of the demand for services:

i.    and that an adjustment for deprivation may also be applied, only if evidence supports as areas of deprivation have characteristics that may indicate a greater dependency on local council services.

ii.    and that an adjustment for geographic isolation may also be applied.

iii.   and that an adjustment for rates collected should also be applied.

o.   Considers that the principle of equitable funding for all local boards intended in the development of a local board funding policy can never be achieved for locally driven initiatives if local boards have full decision-making authority over a very small percentage of total Council operating costs.

p.   Requests that Local Boards are always involved and have direct input into the setting of regional service levels.

q.   Requests that, notwithstanding our support in M. for general rates as a funding basis, further work is undertaken on local rates to fund locally driven initiatives and local asset based services, potentially considering also how assets that cover several local boards could be included.

r.    Considers that a local rate set, if at a large enough level, can make for transparency in that communities pay for the services they receive and enable local boards to modify the rates paid to their local community.

s.   Forwards these resolutions to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party and the Finance and Performance Committee for their consideration.

 

Otara-Papatoetoe Local Board

Resolution number OP/2014/44

MOVED by Chairperson E Collins, seconded by Member JR McCracken: 

That the Ōtara-Papatoetoe Local Board:

a.   Notes that council has moved towards a single rating system resulting in the region being rated on an equal basis.  However, equity in asset and service provision has not yet been addressed.

b.   Notes that locally driven initiatives and local asset based services account for approximately one and ten percent, respectively, of council’s total operating costs, and recommend that further work is undertaken to determine whether 11 percent of Auckland Council’s budget is an appropriate share for local activities.

c.   Supports the 20 February 2014 Finance and Performance Committee resolution directing staff to consider service level equity issues for local asset based services as part of the development of the Long Term Plan and asset management plans and engage with local boards on this and report back on a timetable.

d.   Requests that the engagement process and the work programme to address service level equity issues and asset provision is agreed with the local boards.

e.   Endorses the process and timelines for the Local Boards Funding Policy, provided that the work on service level equity issues and asset provision is progressed in parallel to the local boards funding policy.

f.    Requests that the work programme to address service level equity issues and asset provision includes a staging of the key deliverables, with prioritised asset classes and service levels for review be presented to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party on 6 May 2014.

g.   Recommends that clarity on the treatment of both the Waiheke and Great Barrier local boards, and understanding the implications for the other local boards is required prior to the adoption of the policy.

h.   Requests that work be undertaken to:

i.    determine whether more activities and the corresponding funding should sit in the locally driven initiatives category

ii.    understand which council business units have corporate overheads, activity and programming budgets that have a direct relationship with the role of local boards and their decision-making (in particular budgets held by the Community Development, Arts and Culture department), with a view to shift these budgets to local boards, or increase their ability to influence and change budgets to deliver services that reflect their communities.

i.    Supports work to determine the appropriate amount of budget for local boards to successfully deliver upon their role, noting the current allocation is based on legacy council budgets.

j.    Notes that current locally driven initiative allocations allow for minimal discretion for most local boards and any reduction will impact on existing service levels.

k.   Notes that each of the general rate reallocation scenarios (scenarios A, B and F) will lead to funding increases and decreases across the local boards.

l.    Recommends that general rate allocation scenarios are developed where no local board receives any reduction in funding for consideration.

m.  Notes a targeted rate is available to enhance service levels above an agreed standard service level, once standard service levels are established and that the Board wishes to ensure that this option is maintained.

n.   Recommends that:

i.    asset based service levels are funded by the general rate

ii.    locally driven initiatives are funded via the general rate as local initiatives are core council activities, essential to cohesive communities and Auckland being the world’s most liveable city.

o.   Notes that local rates can lead to inequity and affordability issues and can lock in legacy council funding models.

p.   Recommends that with respect to the allocation method for locally driven initiatives under general rate funding, agree that population should be the main factor, as population tends to be a key driver of the demand for services:

i.    and that an adjustment for deprivation should also be applied, as areas of deprivation have characteristics that may indicate a greater dependency on local services

ii.    and that an adjustment for geographic isolation should also be applied

q.   Forward these resolutions to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party and the Finance and Performance Committee for their consideration


 

Papakura Local Board

Resolution Number PPK/2014/76

MOVED by Deputy Chairperson MV Turner, seconded by Member KJ Winn: 

That the Papakura Local Board:

a.   agree to consider the policy framework for the Local Boards Funding Policy Review and provide formal feedback on the issues discussed and other associated issues

b.   Delegate to Members Turner and Purdy to provide the feedback on the Local Board Funding Policy Review due by 28 April 2014

 

Delegated feedback

 

a.   Recognises that Auckland Council is required to have a Local Board Funding Policy in place and is choosing to review the current policy in line with the timetable for the ten year Long Term Plan commencing 2115 -2016. It is considered that this timetable is too ambitious for the task given there is lack of significant information available on which to base decisions.

b.   Notes that the Auckland Council has moved towards a single rating system resulting in all areas of Auckland being rated on the same basis.  Whilst rating is moving towards a single system the distribution of assets and service provision has not yet been addressed resulting in an inequitable spread across Auckland. It is recognised that this is historical and will take some years to rebalance and that a well considered Local Boards Funding Policy could assist the process.

c.   Current information indicates that local initiatives and asset based services account for around one and ten percent, respectively, of council’s total operating costs. It is recommended that work be undertaken to determine whether a higher percentage of Auckland Council’s budget would be more appropriate for local activities. This would extend the review from its current focus on operating costs as they are allocated to local boards to examine the whole of council’s budget.

d.   Supports the 20 February 2014 Finance and Performance Committee resolution directing staff to consider service level equity issues for local asset based services as part of the development of the Long Term Plan and asset management plans. In so doing to work with local boards and report back on a timetable. Additionally that this work also includes renewals along with the engagement process and the work programme to address service level equity and asset provision. That this be agreed with the local boards recognising that the ideal situation would be for local boards and the governing body progressing this together.

e.   Endorses the process for the Local Boards Funding Policy, but has reservations about the timetable as progress can only be made provided that the work on service level equity issues and asset provision runs in parallel to the Local Board Funding Policy Review.

f.    Requests that the work programme to address service level equity issues and asset provision includes a staging of the key deliverables, with prioritised asset classes and service levels for review be presented to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party on 6 May 2014

g.   Requests clarity on the treatment of both the Waiheke and Great Barrier local boards, and understanding the implications for the other local boards is required prior to the adoption of the policy

h.   Requests that work be undertaken to:

i.    determine whether more activities and the corresponding funding should sit in the locally driven initiatives category

ii.    understand which council business units have corporate overheads, activity and programming budgets that have a direct relationship with the role of local boards and their decision-making (in particular budgets held by the Community Development, Arts and Culture department), with a view to shift these budgets to local boards, or increase their ability to influence and change budgets to deliver services that reflect their communities

iii.   determine whether Business Improvement District (BIDs) corporate overheads should be shifted to local asset based services, as the administrative components (i.e. staffing) are allocated based on the rate collected via the BID, and agreed by the BID and the governing body, not the local boards

i.    Supports work to determine the appropriate amount of budget for local boards to successfully deliver upon their role, noting the current allocation is based on legacy council budgets

j.    Notes that current locally driven initiative allocations allow for minimal discretion for most local boards and any reduction will impact on existing service levels

k.   Notes that each of the general rate reallocation scenarios (scenarios A, B and F) will lead to funding increases and decreases across the local boards. It is therefore recommend that general rate allocation scenarios are developed for consideration which show where no local board receiving any reduction in funding.

l.    Notes a targeted rate is available to enhance service levels above an agreed standard service level, once standard service levels are established

m.  Recommends that both asset based service levels are funded by the general rate along with locally initiatives. The rationale being that local initiatives are core council activities, essential to cohesive communities and Auckland being the world’s most liveable city

n.   Notes that local rates can lead to inequity and affordability issues and can contain a risk of perpetuating legacy council funding models.

o.   Recommends that the allocation method for locally driven initiatives under general rate funding, that population should be the main factor, linked to an adjustment for deprivation. The latter should be applied for several reasons including:

i.    in the wold’s most liveable city the polarisation between wealth and poverty should be minimal and some factors to achieve this can be addressed by Auckland Councils investment in those areas with high levels of deprivation

ii.    investments in areas where there is deprivation have proved highly cost effective in that for each dollar spent there is a multiplier.

iii.   the use of public services from libraries to community houses is far greater

p.   Forward these resolutions to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party and the Finance and Performance Committee.

 

Puketapapa Local Board

Resolution number PKTPP/2014/23

MOVED by Member MP Wood, seconded by Member NJ Turnbull: 

That the Puketāpapa Local Board:

a.   notes that council has moved towards a single rating system resulting in the region being rated on an equal basis.  However, equity in asset and service provision has not yet been addressed

b.   notes that locally driven initiatives and local asset based services account for approximately one and ten percent, respectively, of council’s total operating costs, and recommend that further work is undertaken to determine whether 11 percent of Auckland Council’s budget is an appropriate share for local activities

c.   supports the 20 February 2014 Finance and Performance Committee resolution directing staff to consider service level equity issues for local asset based services as part of the development of the Long Term Plan and asset management plans and engage with local boards on this and report back on a timetable

d.   requests that the engagement process and the work programme to address service level equity issues and asset provision is agreed with the local boards

e.   endorses the process and timelines for the Local Boards Funding Policy, provided that the work on service level equity issues and asset provision is progressed in parallel to the local boards funding policy

f.    requests that the work programme to address service level equity issues and asset provision includes a staging of the key deliverables, with prioritised asset classes and service levels for review be presented to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party on 6 May 2014

g.   recommends that clarity on the treatment of both the Waiheke and Great Barrier local boards, and understanding the implications for the other local boards is required prior to the adoption of the policy

h.   requests that work be undertaken to:

i.    determine whether more activities and the corresponding funding should sit in the locally driven initiatives category

ii.    understand which council business units have corporate overheads, activity and programming budgets that have a direct relationship with the role of local boards and their decision-making (in particular budgets held by the Community Development, Arts and Culture department), with a view to shift these budgets to local boards, or increase their ability to influence and change budgets to deliver services that reflect their communities

iii.   determine whether Business Improvement District (BIDs) corporate overheads should be shifted to local asset based services, as the administrative components (i.e. staffing) are allocated based on the rate collected via the BID, and agreed by the BID and the governing body, not the local boards

i.    supports work to determine the appropriate amount of budget for local boards to successfully deliver upon their role, noting the current allocation is based on legacy council budgets

j.    notes that current locally driven initiative allocations allow for minimal discretion for most local boards and any reduction will impact on existing service levels

k.   notes that each of the general rate reallocation scenarios (scenarios A, B and F) will lead to funding increases and decreases across the local boards

l.    recommends that general rate allocation scenarios are developed where no local board receives any reduction in funding for consideration

m.  notes a targeted rate is available to enhance service levels above an agreed standard service level, once standard service levels are established

n.   recommends that:

i.    asset based service levels are funded by the general rate.

ii.    locally driven initiatives are funded via the general rate as local initiatives are core council activities, essential to cohesive communities and Auckland being the world’s most liveable city

o.   noted that local rates can lead to inequity and affordability issues and can lock in legacy council funding models

p.   recommends that with respect to the allocation method for locally driven initiatives under general rate funding, agree that population should be the main factor, as population tends to be a key driver of the demand for services: [other options for boards to consider including]:

i.    and that an adjustment for deprivation should also be applied, as areas of deprivation have characteristics that may indicate a greater dependency on local services

q.   forward these resolutions to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party and the Finance and Performance Committee for their consideration.

 

Rodney Local Board

Resolution number RD/2014/72

That the Rodney Local Board:

 

a.   note that council has moved towards a single rating system resulting in the region being rated on an equal basis. However, equity in asset and service provision has not yet been addressed.

b.   note that locally driven initiatives and local asset based services account for approximately one and ten percent, respectively, of council’s total operating costs, and recommend that further work is undertaken to determine whether 11 percent of Auckland Council’s budget is an appropriate share for local activities.

c.   support the 20 February 2014 Finance and Performance Committee resolution directing staff to consider service level equity issues for local asset based services as part of the development of the Long Term Plan and asset management plans and engage with local boards on this and report back on a timetable.

d.   recommend that further work be undertaken prior to the draft policy being confirmed on local asset based services to determine:

i.    levels of service required to be funded from general rates to enable regional consistency

ii.    identify gaps in network provision and funding inequities

iii.   the appropriate mechanism to fund these activities (i.e. the general rate, local rate, targeted rate or a combination of all)

iv.   the impacts any change will have on the decision-making allocation

v.   determine the appropriate level of budget for local boards to successfully deliver upon their role, noting the current allocation is based on legacy council budgets

vi.   determine whether more activities and the corresponding funding should sit in the locally driven initiatives category

vii.  identify programme budgets to move to local board budgets as current local budgets are dominated by overhead costs with little funding for programmes

viii. investigate and identify programme budgets held by the Community Development, Arts and Culture department, in particular, given the key role for local boards in community development

ix.   investigate and improve the methodology of allocating overheads across the local boards as currently different approaches are used across activities.

e.   recommend, where appropriate and in accordance with recommendation (d) above that Local Board funding be supported by a local rate (based on further work) as this will:

i.    provide transparency as local communities will understand the local services they are funding

ii.    make local boards more accountable for the decisions they make in providing local services to their communities

iii.   create greater relevance for Local Board Plans and community aspirations, by giving local boards greater control of their budgets and determining delivery of local services.

f.    request as a priority that the full Local Board Funding Policy Political Working Party with the governing body and local board members, schedule a number of key meetings prior to the endorsement of the draft policy to ensure robust and full discussion of the local boards’ views.

g.   recommend that if the work requested in recommendation (e) is not accepted prior to the adoption of the draft Local Board Funding Policy that the Rodney Local Board agrees that the allocation methodology for locally driven initiatives under general rate funding should have population as the main factor, as population tends to be a key driver of the demand for services:

i.    that an adjustment for deprivation should also be applied, as areas of deprivation have characteristics that may indicate a greater dependency on local services and this should be no greater than 10%.

ii.    that an adjustment for geographic isolation should also be applied at a ;eve; no less than deprivation

iii.   that an adjustment for growth should also be applied to ensure that local boards who are experiencing growth has this factored into any locally driven initiatives allocation

iv.   that rates collected is not supported and should not be applied.

h.   recommend that clarity on:

i.    the treatment of both the Waiheke and Great Barrier local boards, and understanding the implications for the other local boards is required prior to the adoption of the policy

ii.    the funding and service delivery differences between urban and rural local boards and the future policy must reflect this difference.

i.    note that current locally driven initiative allocations allow for minimal discretion for most local boards and any reduction will impact on existing service levels.

j.    note that each of the general rate reallocation scenarios (scenarios A, B and F) will lead to funding increases and decreases across the local boards

k.   supports the ability for local boards to propose a targeted rate to enhance service levels above an agreed standard service level, once standard service levels are established

l.    note that local rates can lead to inequity and affordability issues and it is unlikely that any funding model will provide for regional equity or address affordability issues if council is to achieve the aspirations of the Auckland Plan.

m.  forward these resolutions to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party and the Finance and Performance Committee for their consideration.

 

Upper Harbour Local Board

Resolution number UH/2014/57

MOVED by Chairperson BK Neeson, seconded by Member CK Rankin-MacIntyre: 

That the Upper Harbour Local Board:

a.   do not support the use of local rates to fund core council services, e.g. local driven initiatives and asset based services noting that:

i.    local rates can lead to inequity and affordability issues and can lock in legacy council funding models.

b.   note that locally driven initiatives and local asset based services account for approximately one and ten percent, respectively, of council’s total operating costs, and recommend that further work is undertaken to determine whether 11 percent of Auckland Council’s budget is an appropriate share for local activities, as the Upper Harbour Local Board believe that 11 percent is not enough.

c.   support the 20 February 2014 Finance and Performance Committee resolution directing staff to consider service level equity issues for local asset based services as part of the development of the Long Term Plan and asset management plans and engage with local boards on this and report back on a timetable.


d.   request that the engagement process and the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) is agreed with the local boards and includes a staging of the key deliverables, with prioritised asset classes and service levels for review, be presented to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party on 6 May 2014.

e.   endorse the process and timelines for the Local Boards Funding Policy, provided that the work on service level equity issues (including asset provision) is progressed in parallel to the local boards funding policy.

f.    recommend that the treatment of both the Waiheke and Great Barrier local boards gradually be transitioned into a self-sustainable model, as opposed to one of subsidisation.

g.   request that work be undertaken to:

i.    determine the appropriate amount of budget for local boards to successfully deliver upon their role, noting the current allocation is based on legacy council budgets and are dominated by overhead costs with little funding for programmes;

ii.    determine whether more activities and the corresponding funding should sit in the locally driven initiatives category;

iii.   investigate and identify programme budgets held by departments and move these to local board budgets, given the key role for local boards in community development;

iv.   investigate and improve the methodology of allocating overheads across the local boards as currently different approaches are used across activities;

v.   determine whether Business Improvement District (BIDs) corporate overheads should be shifted to local asset based services, as the administrative components (i.e. staffing) are allocated based on the rate collected via the BID, and agreed by the BID and the governing body, not the local boards.

h.   recommend that general rate allocation scenarios are developed, as current locally driven initiative allocations allow for minimal discretion for most local boards and any reduction will impact on existing service levels.

i.    recommend that:

i.    asset based service levels are funded by the general rate;

ii.    locally driven initiatives are funded via the general rate as local initiatives are core council activities, essential to cohesive communities and Auckland being the world’s most liveable city.

j.    recommend that with respect to the allocation methodology for locally driven initiatives under general rate funding, agree that population should be the main factor, as population tends to be a key driver of the demand for services:

i.    and that an adjustment for rates collected should also be applied;

ii.    and that the board does not support any model utilising deprivation or geographic isolation as a driver for allocations.

k.   forward these resolutions to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party and the Finance and Performance Committee for their consideration.

l.    delegate to the Deputy Chairperson, Lisa Whyte, to finalise the board’s feedback to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party and Governing Body as required.


 

Waiheke Local Board

Resolution number WHK/2014/96

MOVED by Member JP Meeuwsen, seconded by Chairperson PA Walden:

That the Waiheke Local Board:

a.   Notes that although Auckland Council has moved towards a single rating system resulting in the region being rated on an equal basis, equity in asset and service provision has not yet been addressed

b.   Considers that the principle of equitable funding for all local boards intended in the development of a local board funding policy can never be achieved for locally driven initiatives if local boards have full decision making authority over a very small percentage of total Council operating costs

c.   Notes that locally driven initiatives and local asset based services account for only approximately one and ten per cent, respectively, of council’s total operating costs, and recommends that further work is undertaken to determine whether 11 per cent of Auckland Council’s budget is an appropriate share for local board decision making

d.   Considers that Auckland Council should identify programme budgets to move to local board budgets as current local budgets are dominated by overhead costs with little funding for programmes.

e.   Considers that Auckland Council should delegate programme budgets held by the Community Development, Arts and Culture department, in particular, given the key role local boards play in community development

f.    Considers that Auckland Council should investigate and improve the methodology of allocating overheads across the local boards as currently different approaches are used across activities

g.   Notes that officers current recommendations on this funding policy will lead to funding increases and decreases across the local boards and recommends that general rate allocation scenarios are developed where no local board receives any reduction in funding

h.   Recommends that with the exception of the Great Barrier and Waiheke local board areas, funding for locally driven initiatives should be based on population with adjustments for deprivation and geographic isolation

i.    Believes  that  the Waiheke and Great Barrier Local Boards should not be funded by any of the local board funding scenarios being considered  on the basis that it is likely to be quite difficult for it to meet any of the criteria, particularly population,  likely to be adopted

j.    Requests that officers identify a specific proposal by which the Waiheke Local Board is to be funded at no less than current levels for locally driven initiatives

k.   Recommends that clarity on the treatment of both the Waiheke and Great Barrier Local Boards, and understanding the implications for the other local boards, is required prior to the adoption of a policy

l.    Supports the 20 February 2014 Finance and Performance Committee resolution directing staff to consider service level equity issues for local asset based services as part of the development of the Long Term Plan and asset management plans and engage with local boards on this and report back on a timetable

m.  Request that the engagement process and the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) is agreed with the local boards

n.   Request that the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) includes a staging of the key deliverables, with prioritised asset classes and service levels for review be presented to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party on 6 May 2014

o.   Recommends that both asset based service levels and locally driven initiatives are funded by the general rate as they are core council activities, essential to cohesive communities and Auckland being the world’s most liveable city

p.   Forward these resolutions to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party and the Finance and Performance Committee for their consideration and to the Great Barrier Local Board for its information

 

Waitakere Ranges Local Board

Resolution number WTK/2014/20

MOVED by Member S Toms, seconded by Member NR Henderson: 

That the Waitākere Ranges Local Board:

a.   Delegates authority to the Chair, Sandra Coney, and Deputy Chair, Denise Yates, to approve the board’s feedback on the draft Local Boards Funding Policy.

b.   Raises the following points for inclusion in the Local Board’s feedback:

i.    The Waitakere Ranges Local Board was set up to meet the community demands for a local board configured to include the Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area.

ii.    The heritage area is recognised as being of national significance and is the only land area in the Auckland region that has a specific piece of national legislation over it.

iii.   The Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area Act 2008 places an obligation on council which needs to be reflected through the funding policy

iv.   The Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area programme to protect and enhance the heritage area has been allocated as a shared decision making responsibility between the governing body and the local board.

v.   Stewardship of the Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area extends throughout our budget, and includes environmental programmes delivered with a community development ethos.

vi.   The failure to recognise natural and green assets in the funding policy, and the value of programmes that maintain these assets, is of particular concern to the board.

vii.  Land matters were meant to include environmental matters.

viii. Some activities seen as discretionary are in fact obligatory, eg Citizenship Ceremonies and ANZAC Day.

ix.   Does not support the introduction of a local rate as it runs counter to the time, effort and cost associated with introducing a single rating system.

 

Delegated feedback:

1.   The Waitakere Ranges Local Board argues that consideration needs to be given to excluding its area from the funding formula, based on its unique nature within the Auckland region; or that the funding policy needs to be revised to take account of that uniqueness.

2.   All the scenarios provided in the draft funding policy result in either a big reduction in funding for the Waitakere Ranges area, or an increase in rates to keep the same service levels.

Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area

3.   Our local board takes its name from the Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area, which is a nationally significant ecological area established by the Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area Act 2008. The Waitakere Ranges Local Board was set up to meet the community demands for a local board configured to include the heritage area.

4.   The Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area Act 2008 places an obligation on Auckland Council for the area which needs to be reflected through the funding policy.


5.   The need for a special approach to the Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area (WRHA) was recognised by Auckland Council in March 2012 (see Attachment A), when the then Regional Development and Operations Committee created a shared work programme to be delivered by the Governing Body and the Waitakere Ranges Local Board. The shared work programme is strongly aligned to the regional objectives of the Auckland Plan, and the priorities of the Waitakere Ranges Local Board Plan.

Resolution number RDO/2012/45

b)   That the Regional Development and Operations Committee endorses the ongoing planning and delivery of the Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area Programme as a key legacy initiative strongly aligned to the draft Auckland Plan.

c)   That the Regional Development and Operations Committee notes that the responsibility for some of the activities within the Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area programme lie with the Governing Body, and some with the Waitakere Ranges Local Board.

6.   The proposed service cuts for the Waitakere Ranges area of around 40 percent in Options A and B in the locally driven initiatives (LDI) category would severely undermine the ability of the local board to perform its stewardship role for the Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area, deliver on its local board plan priorities, and respond to local needs.

7.   The WRHA Act recognises the pivotal relationship between people and place. Its objectives and underlying philosophy direct that council works with local communities in protecting the WRHA and as a result many programmes are delivered with a community development ethos.

8.   The Sustainable Neighbourhoods Programme, for example, has a community development focus while delivering WRHA Act objectives and biosecurity outcomes. Such programmes may be small scale but have sub-regional and regional benefits. Controlling pest and weeds on private land and outside regional parks land is critical to stopping spread into the regional parks.

9.   The Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area work programme budget ($225,173 opex) should be moved from the LDI category as this is part of the shared work programme with the governing body. It needs to be recognised, however, that the heritage area programme is much broader than the single WRHA programme budget line in the local board budget, and we ask that council staff work alongside the local board to identify the greater area of the programme within the programmes currently grouped under the LDI category.

10.  A report on the Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area work programme to the Regional Development and Operations Committee in September 2012 noted that: “Because of the differences in the way in which budgets are set up and accounted for across different council units and programmes, it is not possible to provide a meaningful financial summary.” Further investigation of this issue needs to be undertaken.

Implementing the Auckland Plan: accounting for ecosystem services provided by the Waitakere Ranges

11.  The Waitakere Ranges are ecologically significant and contribute greatly to the strategic directions in Chapter 7 of the Auckland Plan. It is one of the largest areas of coastal and lowland forest with intact sequences remaining in the region. It supports a wide diversity of habitats including forest, shrubland, freshwater streams and rivers, sand flats, dunes, coastal turfs and wetlands. The heritage area as a whole is the home of 93 nationally-threatened species, and has 148 plant species that are considered to be regionally threatened.

12.  The failure to recognise natural and green assets in the funding policy, and the value of programmes that maintain these assets, is of particular concern to the Waitakere Ranges Local Board as it has a big impact on its area.

13.  To deliver on the strategic direction of the Auckland Plan the Council is required to “acknowledge and account for ecosystem services when making decisions for Auckland”, under directive 7.1 - Chapter 7, Auckland’s Environments, (see Attachment C).


14.  The Waitakere Ranges provide valued ecological services to the region and are a major contributor to Auckland’s conservation estate, with heritage features, significant ecological areas, water catchment areas, outstanding natural landscapes and outstanding natural features. These need to be managed appropriately with programmes that:

i.    Enable Auckland Council to meet its obligations under the WRHA Act.

ii.   Implement the Auckland Plan directives 7.1 – 7.5

iii.   Support the regulatory role in the proposed Unitary Plan, existing district and regional plans

iv.  Support the objectives of the Regional Pest Management Strategy, which is a statutory document.

15.  In the next financial year (2014-2015), the local board has re-focused its budget priorities to include funding for a kauri dieback community coordinator and weed management initiatives which will support council to deliver on its statutory obligations to protect, restore and enhance the heritage area.

16.  There is a need to establish appropriate service levels for environmental, biodiversity, biosecurity and heritage programmes which are implemented locally by the Waitakere Ranges Local Board, while delivering strategic objectives and outcomes for the region.

 

Population and geographical isolation

17.  The heritage area is unique as a conservation area as it is right on the doorstep of metropolitan Auckland and has over 7000 households within the Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area, dispersed in small coastal, bush and rural villages.

18.  Geographical isolation is a feature of households and communities in the heritage area.

19.  Just over 40 percent of households in the local board area as a whole are within the heritage area, with its dispersed population living in relative isolation.  The funding policy does not give an appropriate weighting to geographical isolation in the Waitakere Ranges Local Board area.

20.  Residents of these communities are largely self-reliant, and often run and maintain their own community facilities and services, such as volunteer fire brigades, surf lifesaving clubs, community-run libraries and halls.  Services that are provided elsewhere by government, private enterprise and NGO agencies such as CABs are largely absent.  Council needs to look at how to provide public services to these areas to complement and foster that self-reliance.

21.  The funding policy allows little scope for the local board to be responsive and adaptive to the sometimes idiosyncratic needs of its local communities.

 

Local rates

22.  The Waitakere Ranges Local Board strongly opposes the proposal for local activities to be funded by a local rate as it will create further inequities for ratepayers across the region.

23.  Introducing a local rate runs counter to the objectives of Auckland’s local government amalgamation, and the introduction of a single rating system. The expected benefits of becoming a unitary authority would be undermined.

24.  A local rate would, we believe, prove to be highly unacceptable to communities in the Waitakere Ranges and elsewhere across the region. Its introduction would risk bringing about a similar situation to the so-called “rates revolt” of 2003, which was part of the background that led to Auckland’s local government reorganisation.


 

Citizenship ceremonies and ANZAC day commemorations

25.  Citizenship Ceremonies budgets should not be included in the LDI category as they are not a discretionary activity. 

26.  ANZAC Day commemorations should not be a discretionary locally driven initiative, particularly with regard to the service in Waikumete Cemetery where some 10,000 servicemen and women are buried. A service level with appropriate funding level should be set in recognition of the significance of this national day, which is developing as a true “New Zealand” day.

 

Support for working party recommendations (in part)

27.  The Waitakere Ranges Local Board:

a.   Notes that council has moved towards a single rating system resulting in the region being rated on an equal basis.  However, equity in asset and service provision has not yet been addressed.

b.   Notes that locally driven initiatives and local asset based services account for approximately one and ten percent, respectively, of council’s total operating costs, and recommend that further work is undertaken to determine whether 11 percent of Auckland Council’s budget is an appropriate share for local activities

c.   Support work to determine the appropriate amount of budget for local boards to successfully deliver upon their role, noting the current allocation is based on legacy council budgets

d.   Notes that current locally driven initiative allocations allow for minimal discretion for most local boards and any reduction will impact on existing service levels

e.   Endorse the process and timelines for the Local Boards Funding Policy, provided that the work on service level equity issues and asset provision is progressed in parallel to the local boards funding policy

f.    Request that the work programme to address service level equity issues and asset provision includes a staging of the key deliverables, with prioritised asset classes and service levels for review be presented to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party on 6 May 2014

g.   Supports Great Barrier Local Board being excluded from the funding policy because of its special attributes: a small population, large land area, and geographical isolation.

h.   Request that work be undertaken to:

i.    understand which council business units have corporate overheads, activity and programming budgets that have a direct relationship with the role of local boards and their decision-making (in particular budgets held by the Community Development, Arts and Culture department), with a view to shift these budgets to local boards, or increase their ability to influence and change budgets to deliver services that reflect their communities

ii.    determine whether Business Improvement District (BIDs) corporate overheads should be shifted to local asset based services, as the administrative components (i.e. staffing) are allocated based on the rate collected via the BID, and agreed by the BID and the governing body, not the local boards

i.    Recommend that general rate allocation scenarios are developed where no local board receives any reduction in funding for consideration.


j.    Recommend that:

i.    local rates are not considered as a viable option

ii.    asset based service levels are funded by the general rate.

iii.   locally driven initiatives are funded via the general rate as local initiatives are core council activities, essential to cohesive communities and Auckland being the world’s most liveable city

k.   Note that local rates can lead to inequity and affordability issues and can lock in legacy council funding models

l.    Recommend that with respect to the allocation method for locally driven initiatives under general rate funding, agree that population should be the main factor, as population tends to be a key driver of the demand for services:

i.    and that an adjustment for deprivation should also be applied, as areas of deprivation have characteristics that may indicate a greater dependency on local services

ii.    and that an adjustment for geographic isolation should also be applied

iii.   and that the notion of land area be expanded to include a weighting for all land matters including environmental protection and enhancement

iv.   and that there should not be an adjustment for rates collected.

 

Waitemata Local Board

Resolution number WTM/2014/69

MOVED by Chairperson S Chambers, seconded by Deputy Chairperson PJ Coom: 

That the Waitematā Local Board:

a.   That the Local Board Feedback on the Local Boards Funding Policy Review report be received.

b.   That the Waitemata Local Board:

i.    Notes that council has moved towards a single rating system resulting in the region being rated on an equal basis.  However, equity in asset and service provision has not yet been addressed.

ii.    Notes that locally driven initiatives and local asset based services account for approximately one and ten percent, respectively, of council’s total operating costs, and recommend that further work is undertaken to determine whether 11 percent of Auckland Council’s budget is an appropriate share for local activities.

iii.   Supports the 20 February 2014 Finance and Performance Committee resolution directing staff to consider service level equity issues for local asset based services as part of the development of the Long Term Plan and asset management plans and engage with local boards on this and report back on a timetable.

iv.   Requests that the engagement process and the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) is agreed with the local boards.

v.   Endorses the process and timelines for the Local Boards Funding Policy, provided that the work on service level equity issues (including asset provision) is progressed in parallel to the local boards funding policy.

vi.   Requests that the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) includes a staging of the key deliverables, with prioritised asset classes and service levels for review be presented to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party on 6 May 2014.

vii.  Recommends that clarity on the treatment of both the Waiheke and Great Barrier local boards, and understanding the implications for the other local boards is required prior to the adoption of the policy.

viii. Requests that work be undertaken to:

I. determine the appropriate amount of budget for local boards to successfully deliver upon their role, noting the current allocation is based on legacy council budgets.

II. determine whether more activities and the corresponding funding should sit in the locally driven initiatives category.

III.      identify programme budgets to move to local board budgets as current local budgets are dominated by overhead costs with little funding for programmes.

IV.     investigate programme budgets held by the Community Development, Arts and Culture department, in particular, given the key role for local boards in community development.

a)   investigate and improve the methodology of allocating overheads across the local boards as currently different approaches are used across activities.

b)   address Business Improvement District (BIDs) corporate overheads being shifted to local asset based services, as the administrative components (i.e. staffing) are allocated based on the rate collected via the BID, and agreed by the BID and the governing body, not the local boards, and the spectacularly high cost of Waitemata Local Board area alleged local service delivery bears no relationship to the residential benefits of City Centre and city fringe BID delivered and supported services.

ix.   notes that current locally driven initiative allocations allow for minimal discretion for most local boards and any reduction will impact on existing service levels.

x.   notes that each of the general rate reallocation scenarios (scenarios A, B and F) will lead to funding increases and decreases across the local boards.

xi.   recommends that general rate allocation scenarios are developed where no local board receives any reduction in funding for consideration.

xii.  notes a targeted rate is available to enhance service levels above an agreed standard service level, once standard service levels are established.

xiii. forwards these resolutions to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party and the Finance and Performance Committee for their consideration.

 

Resolution number WTM/2014/68

MOVED by Chairperson S Chambers, seconded by Deputy Chairperson PJ Coom: 

That the Waitematā Local Board:

a.   Recommends that:

i.    Asset based service levels are funded by the general rate.

ii.    Locally driven initiatives are funded via the general rate as local initiatives are core council activities, essential to cohesive communities and Auckland being the world’s most liveable city.

b.   Notes that local rates can lead to inequity and affordability issues and can lock in legacy council funding models.


 

Resolution number WTM/2014/69

MOVED by Chairperson S Chambers, seconded by Deputy Chairperson PJ Coom: 

That the Waitematā Local Board:

a.   Recommends that with respect to the allocation methodology for locally driven initiatives under general rate funding, agree that population should be the main factor (80%), as population tends to be a key driver of the demand for services:

i.    and that a 10% adjustment for deprivation should also be applied, as areas of deprivation have characteristics that may indicate a greater dependency on local services;

ii.    and that a 10% adjustment for geographic isolation should also be applied.

Secretarial Note:  Pursuant to Standing Order 3.15.5, Member RAH Thomas and Member GJ Moyle requested that their dissenting votes be recorded.

 

Whau Local Board

Resolution number WH/2014/55

MOVED by Chairperson CM Farmer, seconded by Deputy Chairperson  Zhu: 

That the Whau Local Board:

a.   Notes that council has moved towards a single rating system resulting in the region being rated on an equal basis.  However, equity in asset and service provision has not yet been addressed

b.   Notes that locally driven initiatives and local asset based services account for approximately one and ten percent, respectively, of council’s total operating costs, and recommend that further work is undertaken to determine whether 11 percent of Auckland Council’s budget is an appropriate share for local activities

c.   Support the 20 February 2014 Finance and Performance Committee resolution directing staff to consider service level equity issues for local asset based services as part of the development of the Long Term Plan and asset management plans and engage with local boards on this and report back on a timetable

d.   Request that the engagement process and the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) is agreed with the local boards

e.   Endorse the process and timelines for the Local Boards Funding Policy, provided that the work on service level equity issues (including asset provision) is progressed in parallel to the local boards funding policy

f.    Request that the work programme to address service level equity issues (including asset provision) includes a staging of the key deliverables, with prioritised asset classes and service levels for review be presented to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party on 6 May 2014

g.   Recommend that clarity on the treatment of both the Waiheke and Great Barrier local boards, and understanding the implications for the other local boards is required prior to the adoption of the policy

h.   Request that work be undertaken to:

i.    determine the appropriate amount of budget for local boards to successfully deliver upon their role, noting the current allocation is based on legacy council budgets

ii.    determine whether more activities and the corresponding funding should sit in the locally driven initiatives category

iii.   identify programme budgets to move to local board budgets as current local budgets are dominated by overhead costs with little funding for programmes.

iv.   investigate programme budgets held by the Community Development, Arts and Culture department, in particular, given the key role for local boards in community development

v.   investigate and improve the methodology of allocating overheads across the local boards as currently different approaches are used across activities

vi.   determine whether Business Improvement District (BIDs) corporate overheads should be shifted to local asset based services, as the administrative components (i.e. staffing) are allocated based on the rate collected via the BID, and agreed by the BID and the governing body, not the local boards.

i.    Notes that current locally driven initiative allocations allow for minimal discretion for most local boards and any reduction will impact on existing service levels

j.    Note that each of the general rate reallocation scenarios (scenarios A, B and F) will lead to funding increases and decreases across the local boards

k.   Recommend that general rate allocation scenarios are developed (potentially phased in over time) where no local board receives any reduction in funding.

l.    Note a targeted rate is available to enhance service levels above an agreed standard service level, once standard service levels are established

m.  Recommend that:

i.    asset based service levels are funded by the general rate.

ii.    locally driven initiatives are funded via the general rate as local initiatives are core council activities, essential to cohesive communities and Auckland being the world’s most liveable city

n.   Note that local rates can lead to inequity and affordability issues and can lock in legacy council funding models

o.   Recommend that with respect to the allocation methodology for locally driven initiatives under general rate funding, agree that population should be the main factor, as population tends to be a key driver of the demand for services: [other options for boards to consider including]

i.    and that an adjustment for deprivation should also be applied, as areas of deprivation have characteristics that may indicate a greater dependency on local services

p.   Forward these resolutions to the Local Boards Funding Policy Political Working Party and the Finance and Performance Committee for their consideration

q.   Supports General Rates fund allocation based on 90% - resident population size and 10% - deprivation index (as per scenario F in the attachment – Page 29).


Budget Committee

26 May 2014

 

 














   

   



[1] The existing policy is included in Auckland Council’s Long-term Plan 2012-2022 as Chapter 9 of Volume Three, which is available from the council’s website.

 

[2] Assumed to be 4 per cent per annum being  the projected growth in rates revenue which is the sum of 2.5 per cent inflation and 1.5 per cent growth in the rating base

[3] It should be noted that whilst the Rodney and Franklin local board supports a local rate to fund LDIs and all local board funding, they have also recommended that if LDIs are supported by the general rate, then the allocation formula comprise of population, deprivation and geographic isolation.

[4] Only if evidence supports as areas of deprivation have characteristics that may indicate a greater dependency on local council services.

[5] Advise Auckland Council that if it decides to include deprivation in any funding formula, a corresponding adjustment for amount of rates collected should also be applied.