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The Dunedin City Council has indicated it would like a more hands-on role in the running of council-controlled organisations (CCOs).
A draft letter to Dunedin City Holdings Ltd (DCHL) indicated the change of direction, and was approved in yesterday’s council meeting.
The letter indicated the council wanted to be "a more active shareholder" with its CCOs, and said it intended to develop an investment plan for all of its investment assets.
The work would be led by the council, but under the expectation that DCHL would fully engage with the process and provide support and resources towards the development of the plan.
The work would hopefully be complete in time for the 2024-34 10-year plan.
Greater transparency around the dividend policy was also sought.
There was an acknowledgement that the various businesses needed to retain cash for reinvestment and debt servicing, but the council wanted to work proactively with DCHL to ensure the way these needs were met was "mutually acceptable and effective for all".
Climate change was another focus of the letter, with the council’s target of reducing the city’s net carbon emissions to zero by 2030 in the spotlight.
While DCHL has previously committed to contributing to this goal, the council asked the group to review all of its activities and report back on how they affect the overall target.
The letter acknowledges that some of DCHL’s subsidiaries face challenges that would be difficult to address in reaching the target.
"However, DCHL must not lose sight of the goal of each company achieving the 2030 target, this is what the council will report progress against publicly."
Ongoing reporting into progress, challenges and costs was requested.
The draft letter was approved by councillors, with no abstentions or votes against its approval recorded in the meeting.