25 Jun 2019

Christchurch rates rise to be lower than expected - mayor

5:56 pm on 25 June 2019

Christchurch residents' rates are to rise 4.79 percent next year.

Christchurch mayor Lianne Dalziel speaks to reporters at the Christchurch City Council offices.

Christchurch mayor Lianne Dalziel Photo: RNZ / Simon Rogers

Christchurch City Council voted this afternoon in its Annual Plan to increase rates, and discussed plans on budgeting for the city's most pressing needs.

The rise in rates is more than half a percent less than forecast in the Long Term Plan.

The council discussed its main focuses on maintenance and repairs for roads and footpaths, a new multicultural centre, and removing chlorine from the city's water supply.

Mayor Lianne Dalziel said she was pleased with the outcome of the lower-than-planned rates.

"We [council] took a relatively steady-as-you-go approach," she said.

Savings on this year's annual plan included funding cuts for planning agency Regenerate Christchurch. Most of this saving will be spent on resealing roads and footpaths and improving parks, and sea-level rise work at Southshore and South Brighton.

Ms Dalziel was also adamant chlorine would be removed from Christchurch's drinking supply.

"We are committed to providing safe drinking water that is without chlorine. Chlorine treatment is unnecessary."

The council this year heard about 250 submissions on its draft annual plan - the lowest number of submissions in several years. The draft annual plan was released on 1 March - a week prior to the 15 March mosque attacks.

By the end of June 2020, the council is expected to have debt of close to $2 billion.

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