MEDIA RELEASE - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Councillors have adopted the Annual Report for the Westland District Council for the 2020/21 year and announced an operating surplus of $7.6 million. With the Annual Plan drafted during the uncertainty of the early pandemic, original forecasts were for a conservative surplus of $84,000.
“Much of the operating surplus is made up of the unbudgeted grants that Council received for projects under the Covid-19 recovery umbrella. This also shows up in the cash and cash equivalents, and assets under construction figures,” explains Lesley Crichton, Group Manager: Corporate Services. “Most of the projects that we received funding for were not budgeted in the 2020/2021 year at the planning stage, as we did not know what was going to happen early in the pandemic. This has created an unexpectedly high surplus. We also noted improved interest rates and received more vested assets income than anticipated.”
“This year Council brought some roles back in-house, including the Museum staff and Human Resources so here there is higher than anticipated expenditure. We also have some of the expenditure from Mayors Taskforce for Jobs and the War Memorials and Halls renovation work offsetting the grants received for these purposes.”
Mayor Bruce Smith is delighted that the Annual Report is over the line, “I know that our staff have worked tirelessly to make sure that this report met the statutory deadline of 31 December. Council acknowledges that this has not been an easy job. Staff not only managed to produce a sound report but Council has produced a great financial result as well. The community can look forward to enjoying the improved roads, water assets and community halls in the district, for which staff worked hard to get the grant funding. These improvements can only make our district a better place to live in.”
Find the full Annual Report here.
Media enquiries to:
Emma Rae, Strategy and Communications Advisor