Whanganui District Council's organisation will be under the microscope again as management try to deliver more efficiencies that councillors have called for.

The council faces significant costs in the coming years, driven mainly by the replacement wastewater treatment plant, and councillors are looking for savings across the board of its operations.

Chief executive officer Kym Fell has already rung the changes, disestablishing two senior management roles, corralling other management positions and giving them broader roles.

But Mr Fell said he would be reviewing the administration's organisational structure to find further savings in the coming financial year. He said the $150,000 savings in the 2016-17 Annual Plan specifically relate to the expected net variance in savings from the three senior roles after redundancy payments have been made.


He said each year after that council will be more efficient by $250,000 annually when the old management structure is compared to the new executive leadership team structure he has introduced.

And it won't stop there.

"Each of the general managers will be tasked with finding further efficiencies. However, this may not necessarily be in personnel savings. It's more likely to be found in the procurement of external products and services," Mr Fell said.

He was also looking at how council could ensure that all its staff were paid at least the "living wage" and would be reporting back on how this could be achieved in 2016-17.

The Civil Defence team has been boosted with council approving the employment of a full-time emergency management officer, a decision which requires an additional $65,000 from rates.

Mr Fell said it was one of the recommendations that came in the wake of the June 2015 floods and the new officer would work specifically on response and recovery.

"This will help our planning and preparation for Civil Defence welfare, engagement with the community on preparedness for emergencies, and ensure that operationally we are better prepared to respond in an emergency," he said.

Other specific spending within council's headquarters includes borrowing $98,000 to upgrade the council chamber sound system. The current system is inconsistent and makes it hard for those in the public gallery to hear what councillors are saying.

And council has added another $20,000 to its waste minimisation budget to create a hazardous waste depot at the Whanganui Resource Recovery Centre in Maria Pl. The centre currently accepts used oils and car batteries but the funding will let it take household chemicals, garden chemicals, solvents and other household hazardous waste.