If you pay rates and also use facilities such as council-run pools, halls or gyms, your wallet might be in for a double hit.

Bay Venues Limited wants to hike both fees to use its facilities and its ratepayer-funded operating subsidy to fill an estimated $550,000 operational funding shortfall.

It's the first time the council-controlled organisation, created in 2014, has asked Tauranga City for an increase in its subsidy beyond an annual rise tied to the Consumer Price Index. User fees and charges have been increased in the past.

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For the current financial year, Bay Venues' rates-funded subsidy was $2.67m and it was expected to make just over $3m from user fees, against about $6m in operating expenses.

The Tauranga City Council had agreed to consider a proposed "hybrid" funding model that would spread the burden between ratepayers and users.

The current proposal, to be considered through the draft Annual Plan 2020-21 process, would see fees and charges hiked to raise $400,000 extra revenue and the rest funded by a $150,000 increase to Bay Venues' subsidy.

Until now, revenue growth had covered higher expenses such as minimum wage increases and higher maintenance and health and safety compliance costs, but that had been overtaken.

An external review of Bay Venues pricing found the CPI increases were not keeping pace with operational cost increases.

Bay Venues chief executive Gary Dawson told the council on Thursday the organisation had increased revenue by 54 per cent since 2014, with more profitable facilities such as Mount Hot Pools helping to subsidise community facilities.

Visitor numbers were up 24 per cent and the organisation's reliance on rates funding had dropped from $1.67 per ratepaying household to $1.27.

He said the new pricing system would also be simpler and easier to understand.


The draft annual plan will go through a prioritisation process before being put out for public feedback later this year.

Average price increases proposed

Aquatic general entry - 7.4 per cent
Aquatic lane and squad - 17.6 per cent
Aquatics memberships - 24.3 per cent
Indoor court facilities - 19.6 per cent
Community halls - 13 per cent
Community centres - 26.4 per cent

Funded network total - 14.6 per cent

Source: Tauranga City Council