27 Oct 2010

Council mulls rate rise to pay for leaky homes

1:50 pm on 27 October 2010

Potential job cuts, asset sales and rates rises are all on the table for the Wellington City Council as it takes a serious look at how to pay for its multi-million dollar leaky homes bill.

The council opted into the Government's leaky homes rescue package earlier this year, meaning it must contribute 25% of the cost of repairs.

The mayor at the time, Kerry Prendergast, estimated the cost to the council would be $120 million - $240 million.

The council has just $18 million in its budget to pay the bill, and must now consider rates rises, more borrowing or making cuts to jobs and services.

Council spokesperson Richard MacLean says savings could be made through attrition, or selling assets such as the council's 33% share in the airport.

The council's chief executive, Garry Poole, will brief councillors next month about where savings can be made.