Grey District Council has adopted their Annual Report for 2022/2023 at its Council meeting held today, Tuesday 31 October 2023.
The Annual Report reviews progress Council has made in the previous financial year and measures Council’s performance against the Annual Plan and Long Term Plan targets. The Annual Report for 2022/2023 reports against year two of the Long Term Plan 2021/2031.
Mayor Tania Gibson acknowledged the challenges faced by the community over the past financial year, saying “in the backdrop of a rapidly rising inflation rate in New Zealand, the resulting cost of living crisis has been felt by Grey District residents. This economic environment led to increased costs in materials as well as contractor and consultant usage, limiting our ability to complete work within existing budgets.”
Council fell short of its aspirations for activity-based performance targets. “Following the release of the Resident Satisfaction Survey results in June 2023, Council immediately began taking steps to improve. We are wholeheartedly committed to addressing this and have already seen improvements in key areas, such as customer service, with the addition of Snap Send Solve and multiple other initiatives. We are confident we will see an improvement in performance target measures for the upcoming 2023/2024 year”, says Mayor Gibson.
Council recorded a total operating deficit of $(3.9) million, reflecting the financial challenges faced during the period.
Total revenue for the year was $37.3 million, surpassing the budget of $31.5 million with a favourable $5.8 million variance. This increase is attributed largely to the rise in subsidies and grants received, particularly from Kanoa (previously the provincial growth fund) Projects and Three Waters funding.
However, total expenditure stood at $41.3 million compared to the budget of $33.4 million, resulting in a $7.8 million unfavourable variance. $5.4 million of the unfavourable variance is due to other expense including increased costs associated with consultants and contractors as well as professional fees to ensure continued compliance with local government legislation and the final stage of the customer focused council project. Depreciation increased with $2.5million as an unfavourable variance to budget.
A revaluation of Council’s Three Waters and roading assets contributed to a significant increase in comprehensive revenue, adding $47.1 million in gains and totalling $43.1 million in surplus. This increase in value is directly linked to the increasing costs to replace assets.
Council’s debt remains unchanged from the previous year at $30.6 million.
Other notes of importance:
- Three bridges (Moonlight, Rough River, William Stewart) have been replaced, and two more (Seven Mile and Clear Creek) are currently under construction.
- Council’s fixed assets are now $556 million, an increase of $46 million from the prior financial year, primarily driven by a revaluation of Council’s infrastructure assets and the works programme undertaken over the last year.
- The introduction of kerbside recycling to the ‘greater Greymouth’ area has resulted in a reduction in the volume of waste being dumped in the landfill. This has a long-term positive impact as the landfill facility can offer a longer useful life.
- 322 building consent applications processed and 236 LIMs processed.
Grey District Council is committed to creating a thriving, resilient and connected Grey District through maintaining financial prudence, optimising community development, and addressing the evolving needs of the Grey District community.
The Annual Report 2022/2023 will be available shortly on the Grey District Council website. An Annual Report summary will also be available in the coming weeks.