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TDC finally adopts its Annual Report

October 27th, 2016
[TDC press release]

The Tasman District Council was able to adopt its Annual Report today at the first Council meeting of the new three-year term.

The report was initially held up by questions Audit NZ had about how Nelson Airport treated its assets in their accounts. As the Council is a major shareholder in the Airport, the treatment could have affected how we reported the airport's position in the Council's Annual Report.

After some time, Audit NZ are now satisfied with the Airport's reporting process and have as a result given the green light for the Council's Annual Report.

As previously reported the Audit NZ questions would not have affected the Council's result in any way.

"The delay in adopting the report has not affected what is a great result, and it's one that ratepayers will reap the benefits of in coming years - whether through reduced rates demands, debt repayment, continuing to rebuild our emergency fund or increased spending on community infrastructure and facilities," said Tasman Mayor Richard Kempthorne.

Tasman's wrap-up of its finances and achievements confirms the Council's strong financial performance continues, with net debt reduced from $141 million in 2015 to $129 million at the end of June 2016.

The current debt is $44 million less than the $173 million forecast in the Tasman District Council's Annual Plan 2015-2016. The Council also recorded an underlying operational surplus of $13.2 million.

Richard said the Council's strong balance sheet means it is in a good position to retire more debt, continue to rebuild the emergency fund, carry funding forward for projects that were delayed this year, and deliver lower rate increases than forecast in future years.

He said the numbers in the Annual Report were the result of significant operational savings, increased forestry revenue, less spending needed on emergency works and disaster clean-ups, delays to some capital works and higher debt repayment.

Population growth, low inflation and low interest rates had also contributed.

It is likely the Council's debt will continue to track well below the level anticipated in the Long Term Plan 2015-2025.

The Council spent $26.9 million on capital works projects over the year, including the Golden Bay Community Recreation Facility, Motueka Wastewater Treatment Plant upgrade, Saxton Velodrome and design plans for the Richmond Central infrastructure upgrades (which includes the Queen Street upgrade).

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