A proposal by the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) to
reduce monetary support for Queenstown Lakes District
transport projects and programmes could mean a cut of between
$204,000 and $1.4 million for the district.
The agency is reviewing its subsidy rates for local authority
transport projects and programmes, prompting the Queenstown
Lakes District Council to send a submission to the agency
outlining its concerns.
In a report discussed at the council's meeting in Wanaka on
Thursday, council transport policy and stakeholder manager
Denis Mander said the submission ''expresses concern that the
current proposals do not consider the economic return from
the agency's investment in our projects and proposals''.
Mr Mander said it was accepted that the area's ratepayers'
ability to afford the costs was relevant but housing and fuel
costs ''are relatively high here''.
''In addition, the use of our network is high (due to the
large number of tourists) and the cost of running this
network is met by a relatively small number of ratepayers.''
The NZTA proposes to remove the special purpose road status
which presently applies to the Glenorchy and Crown Range
''We are concerned that funding reductions for special
purpose roads will shift the funding burden towards local
ratepayers without having regard to the national benefits of
these roads, their contribution to the state highway network
and our inability to apply rates to the Crown estate (the
The agency also proposes to reduce the funding rate for new
roads, which the QLDC submitted would penalise high growth
The council's submission asks that the agency's funding
mechanism ''enables growth driven and high economic return
projects and programmes ... receive a higher funding rate''.
Special purpose roads should continue to be funded at their
present rate until further information was sought.
At the request of Local Government New Zealand, the NZTA
agency extended the closing date for submissions on the
Funding Assistance Rates Review Options discussion document
to March 28.