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Source: Auckland Council

Auckland Council’s Emergency Committee agreed today to publicly consult on a proposed Covid-19 rates postponement scheme as part of wider consultation on the Emergency Budget 2020/2021.

The following is a summary of decisions made. The agenda is available on Auckland Council’s website and minutes will be added once confirmed. This meeting was also webcast on the council’s website and items are available on demand.

Item 8: COVID-19 briefing and Auckland Emergency Management status update   

The regular weekly update on the Covid-19 pandemic and the Auckland Emergency Management response was received by the committee.

This week’s updates included:

  • Ian Maxwell, Director Executive Programmes, on the Auckland Council Group and emergency management Covid-19 response.

  • Nick Hill, Chief Executive ATEED, gave a presentation on what ATEED is doing to respond to Covid-19.

The full updates will be available to view on-demand on the Auckland Council website.

Item 9: Annual Budget 2020/2021 consultation part 1 – local board feedback

The committee received Local Board feedback on the first round of public consultation on the Emergency Budget 2020/2021 for consideration when decisions are made.

From 21 February to 22 March 2020, the council consulted with the public on the Annual Budget (now called the Emergency Budget). Public consultation on further matters for the Emergency Budget will take place later in this month.

Item 10: Rates and Fees Issues for the Emergency Budget 2020/2021   

The committee recommended to the Governing Body for decision making minor changes to rating policy and some fees for inclusion in the Emergency Budget 2020/2021 and amendments to the council’s Revenue and Financing Policy. These changes were publicly consulted on in February and March this year and some of the changes recommended are subject to the consideration of further feedback.

Item 11:  Rates Postponement for properties affected by COVID-19    

It was unanimously agreed to publicly consult on a Covid-19 rates postponement scheme alongside the consultation on the Emergency Budget 2020/2021. Under the proposed scheme rates postponement will be available to all residential and business ratepayers financially stressed because of Covid-19.

More information on the proposed scheme is available here (item 11).

Item 12: Annual Budget 2020/2021 Emergency Budget public consultation approach 

The council consulted with Aucklanders on the Annual Budget 2020/2021 from mid-February to mid-March this year. However, due to the impact of Covid-19 the council is proposing to consult on further matters for the Emergency Budget 2020/2021.

The committee has made a recommendation to the council’s Governing Body to endorse a recommended engagement approach for further consultation on the Emergency Budget.

It is proposed that this further consultation takes place from 29 May 2020 to 19 June 2020. To adhere to Covid-19 health and safety requirements a digitally led engagement approach is recommended, including the use of online webinar events, with feedback options through written, telephone and digital channels.