In response to Alan Deverson (
, November 6) we wish to clarify some matters for your readers in the interests of accuracy.
Staffing has not increased at council. As you reported (August 24), a review of council's structure (excluding council-controlled organisations/CCOs) resulted in changes but no increase in staff numbers. The review was undertaken to ensure we can deliver on the direction of council and community needs.
InfraCore is a CCO, reporting to council quarterly but with its own management and governing board. Council is not involved in day-to-day CCO operations or contract negotiations.
While council debt increased this past financial year, it is lower than was anticipated in the 2015-25 Long-term Plan and remains within council's debt ceiling. It was anticipated no debt increase would occur but the following meant that was, ultimately, not possible:
• Our closed museum is currently not contributing revenue but still incurring costs because core staff continue to deliver essential museum activity.
• Funding allocated to the 2017/18 year for the library building was brought forward due to progress on the project.
• Council purchased a museum storage facility it previously leased but which came up for sale, providing the opportunity for savings in the longer term.
• Kerbside collections and landfill operations have remained within budgets but the amount of waste going to landfill has not reduced as much as was anticipated so landfill disposal costs were higher than budgeted.
Members of the public are welcome to contact council with questions or to verify information, call (07) 348 4199 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rotorua Lakes Council
Council v council
As one of the ratepayers that some councillors purport to be sticking up for in regards to wasting my hard earned rates cash I am more concerned with the thought that our regional council has to resort to legal action to ensure that our local council is meeting its environmental obligations.
In this situation I am irked that some of our councillors feel they should be exempt from the same regulatory oversight as others in our regional community.
I look forward to the judgment in court as to the truth of this matter and shall ignore the fake news that my rates are being wasted.