Have your say on Nelson City Council's fees and charges consultation17/03/2021 12:51pm
Nelson City Council would like to know what you think of the proposed amendments to its fees and charges relating to environmental health and food services, building services and resource management activities.
Council’s fees and charges for environmental health, food and building services are proposed to increase above the Consumer Price Index December 2020 rate of 1.4%.
These increases are necessary to ensure we can meet our obligations as a regulatory authority and recover the costs of the services we provide. Council needs to be able to recruit and retain highly qualified staff in a very competitive market, and to ensure that those who benefit from our regulatory services pay a reasonable cost for that service.
Where the current fees and charges are meeting an appropriate proportion of the costs of providing the services, they will be adjusted in line with the CPI. This applies to resource consent fees.
The consultation period for fees and charges opened on 16 March, and will close on 16 April. Further information, including Statements of Proposal and feedback forms are available at shape.nelson.govt.nz/fees-and-charges.
Any approved changes to the fees will take effect from 1 July 2021.
The Building Unit is responsible for issuing building consents, inspecting building work and issuing property information. Costs to recruit and retain qualified and experienced officers are increasing as are costs to engage external consultants or specialists. This directly increases the costs of providing this service.
The proposal is to raise the hourly charge-out rates and fees to better cover the costs of providing the building and LIM services.
Increases to the fees for commercial consents recognise the complexities of commercial builds and the additional pressure to retain, train and recruit competent qualified staff.
The proposed fees and charges have been compared with fees imposed by other territorial authorities of similar size for the same work. The proposed fees are the same as the average charges set by these other authorities.
Food Licensing Fees
The current fees were set when the Food Act 2014 came into effect. In the 2019/20 financial year, the charges covered 45% of the cost of the services Council provides – processing registrations, and providing verification services. The proposed adjustment will allow Council to meet 49% of the cost of services provided from its regulatory fees, so that business owners who benefit from the service are paying a fairer share of the costs compared to ratepayers.
Environmental health fees
The environmental health fees and charges cover the services provided under the Health Act, the Impounding Act and Maritime Transport Act. These fees have not changed since 1 July 2016. Council is proposing an increase above the CPI to bring these charges more in line with actual costs of the service.