There could be more spent to retire debt or fix stormwater - but Whanganui councillors have agreed to put their annual plan out for consultation.

It comes with an average rates rise of 3.9 per cent - not the 3.5 per cent they intended, but less than in many other districts.

The document needed to be read alongside the council's 10-Year Plan, because it mainly listed departures from that.

One is extra spending on Whanganui's port. Another is a 50 cent increase in the price of going to a council swimming pool.

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Whanganui Mayor Hamish McDouall would have been happier with a higher rates increase and more debt retired. Cr Alan Taylor would have liked more spent on the stormwater network.

"It's going to be under a lot of pressure. It's falling to bits much faster than we are actually fixing it," he said.

Cr Philippa Baker-Hogan would have liked more detail about what the council was doing long-term. Cr Rob Vinsen said the plan wasn't very exciting because it lacked that. But Cr Kate Joblin did find it exciting.

McDouall said the increase in swimming pool fees wasn't revenue gathering, it was just covering costs, and that last year he was as bothered about stormwater as Cr Taylor.

He was pleased extra money was going to the port, because it needed it.

"We have cut some things, and added some things, and reached a fairly good landing pad," he said.

He understood individual councillors would have individual responses to the plan, and said they can speak as individuals about the things they disagree with.

The councillors agreed to put Whanganui District Council's 2019/20 Annual Plan out for consultation until April 24. They are to hear submitters on May 8 and 9.