I ahu mai te pūtea i hea? How is this being funded?
The estimated gross cost for the scheme concept is $22.5 million.
The community steering group, in partnership with Rotorua Lakes Council, applied for and secured $6.5 million from the Ministry for the Environment and $0.75 million from the Bay of Plenty Regional Council.
In addition to using its balance sheet for the upfront borrowings ($14.0 mil) to progress and construct the scheme, Rotorua Lakes Council is contributing $1500 to offset costs for each property.
The cost to property owners – based on the concept estimates, less the funding subsidies – is approximately $33,000 incl. GST (per property) which is to be paid on completion of the scheme under the Council’s current funding policy for the project.
Due to concerns from the local community, expressed in feedback and consultations in early 2021, that some in the Tarawera community (an estimated 25%) may not be able to make a lump sum repayment in three years’ time when the scheme is exprected to be completed, a funding sub-committee has been formed. The sub-committee will consider repayment options for those who may not be able to pay in a lump sum and will develop a set of criteria that lays out clear and viable repayment options for those property owners. The committee consists of council officers, Rotorua Lakes Community Board, elected members, a BOPRC local member and Tarawera community representatives.
In line with the direction of its 2021-31 Long-term Plan, Council is progressing the detailed design and obtaining a binding construction offer in order to get more cost certainty and finalise repayment options.
Council is also working with the community to try and source additional external funding.
A report for Council consideration on the outcomes of these activities is expected to be presented in March/April 2022.
The current estimated capital cost of approximately $22.5m is based on 550 household units (there are currently 446 units and council has allowed for some additional growth). The estimated cost is also based on Council’s experience of unit cost prices for the East Rotoiti/Rotomā scheme.
The estimate will be updated following detailed design (which will fully validate the specific engineering and geotechnical needs for each property) and after construction tenders are received.
Future operational, maintenance and renewal costs will be carried by all ratepayers in the district connected to the council wastewater networks as part of wastewater targeted rate (an estimated extra $30-40 annually).