Staff explain surplus

Dunedin City Council staff yesterday moved to explain further the surplus made by the council's solid waste activities.

It was reported last week the Green Island landfill was expected to generate a $1.5 million surplus this financial year, contributing to a forecast end surplus of $1.37 million from the council's overall solid waste activities.

Council staff yesterday confirmed those figures were correct, but said the general rates taken to contribute to the operation of the Middlemarch Transfer Station, Waikouaiti Landfill, litter collection and clean-up days, had to be subtracted from any dividend to the council.

They explained that after deducting capital expenditure and loan repayments, they were left with a $1.29 million dividend.

That figure was then reduced by the amount of general rates gathered for solid waste activities. In 2013-14, that would be $474,000.

That left a net total of $819,000, although the operation was forecast to be $372,000 under budget due in part to the previous charging issues.

Next year, 2014-15, solid waste revenue was expected to be down as the Tahuna Waste Water Treatment Plant, which was upgrading its incinerator, sent less sludge to the landfill for disposal.

Sludge disposal was a significant income for the landfill.

About $506,000 in rates was expected to be taken for solid waste activities, meaning that although a net surplus of $957,000 was forecast, only about $451,000 of that would actually be counted as the dividend.

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