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Rates rise of 9.3 per cent tipped

Masterton’s urban ratepayers are facing a rates hike of 9.3 per cent, according to draft budgets for the council’s Long-Term Plan.

Meanwhile, rural Masterton ratepayers are facing a possible 14.8 per cent rise.

On average, this equates to a rise of 10.6 per cent across the district.

The signalled rates rise is subject to outcomes of consultation with the community on several major projects, including the town hall and library, and the town centre refurbishment.

In a report to council, which meets on Wednesday, it is recommended that councillors approve two options for consultation regarding the town centre refurbishment.

The first option, which is “preferred”, is to “do the minimum and only replace critical infrastructure” in Queen St.

This option is estimated to cost $6.48 million and includes footpath resurfacing, with paving stones replaced with “asphaltic cement finishes”, the repainting and re-installation of street furniture, and the replacement or underground relining of water infrastructure.

Under this option, members of the public would not notice any substantial differences, aside from temporary disruption to the CBD.

The second option, which would cost an estimated $14.12m, would result in significant changes to the streetscape of Queen St.

“The general tenor of the proposed design is to create a more people-centric design by widening the footpaths, improving seating and green spaces, providing more space for footpath dining and reducing the amount of on-street car parking,” the report said.

Six other topics will be consulted on as part of Masterton District Council’s Long-Term Plan process including changes to council funding for community groups, and reducing funding to the Wairarapa Economic Development Strategy.

The community will also be asked whether they want to cease funding for regional walking and cycling facilitation and the regional Positive Ageing Strategy, and whether council should seek external funding for Welcoming Communities facilitation or allow funding from rates from 2025.

The final consultation topic is on how to fund Climate Activation facilitation beyond 2026 when external funding expires.

The council is set to adopt its Long-Term Plan Consultation Document on April 3, and consultation will begin on April 5.

Consultation will close on May 5, with hearings set for May 22 and 23.

Deliberations would be held on June 5 and the final plan would be adopted on June 26.


LDR is local body
journalism co-funded
by RNZ and NZ On Air.


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Emily Ireland
Emily Ireland
Emily Ireland is Wairarapa’s Local Democracy Reporter, a Public Interest Journalism role funded through NZ On Air. Emily has worked at the Wairarapa Times-Age for seven years and has a keen interest in council decision-making and transparency.

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