The New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) has completed its review of Funding Assistance Rates (FAR) and the Wairoa District Council is certainly pleased with the final outcome.
Wairoa District Council Engineering Manager, Jamie Cox, says that “the final decisions of the review have basically confirmed that overall funding for Wairoa is not going to be reduced and that they are actually going to increase our funding rate. This is fantastic news for Wairoa.”
“We were actively engaged in the review process, wrote a submission to the review panel and were part of a delegation of local authorities who presented to Transport Minister, Gerry Brownlee. “
“All our work has paid off and now we’re likely to see a seven percentage point increase in our rate over the next 10 years. We will be moving from a funding assistance rate of 68% to 75%. In real terms this means that 75% of our approved land transport programme is going to be covered by central government, and is great news for us”, says Mr Cox.
The funding assistance rates review began in late 2012 and was set up as a response to the local government sector being unhappy with the current system. It was also set up to determine the most appropriate method for setting funding assistance rates.
“There was a bit of uncertainty for us with this review taking place.”
“The Local Government Commission in its proposal for reorganising local government in Hawke’s Bay noted that we are more reliant on government grants and subsidies and that any changes to roading subsidy rates are likely to put further pressure on our district’.”
“This is not now going to be the case. Now that we have this certainty, that our funding assistance rate is actually going to increase, this gives us confidence in our ability to sustain our land transport infrastructure in the coming years”, Mr Cox says.
The Funding Assistance Rate determines the proportion of the approved costs for land transport activities being undertaken by a council. It is funded from the National Land Transport Fund (NLTF) and is administered by the New Zealand Transport Agency.
5 July 2016
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