Dog regos flagged to rise as CODC considers fees and charges

by Kim Bowden - Jun 21, 2024

Fines for overdue library books may go, but the cost to own a dog may jump by a third as the Central Otago District Council considers changes to what it charges for different services for the year ahead.

The council is proposing ditching late fees for adult users of the district's libraries - a policy that already stands for young book borrowers.

Currently adults pay 20 cents for each day a book is kept out after its return date.

Libraries are also looking to drop their $2 charge for a half-hour on a computer, instead making them free to use.

Elsewhere, the council is proposing fee hikes, however.

The average dog owner in the district is facing a more than 30 percent jump in registration costs - from $55 to $72 for a non-working dog, after staying steady for a number of years - while a new $108 fee for a 'dangerous dog' is also on the table.

The cost to register a working dog looks set to stay at $12.

Ratepayers on town water supplies and wastewater networks also look set to pay more, with monthly connection fees proposed to increase from $23.12 to $30.99 a month, and $27.20 to $41.83 a month, respectively, with proposed increases to three waters capital and development contributions also likely.

The costs of other council services are also flagged to rise, including burial fees, additional wheelie bins, pool entries, hall hireage, and new driveway access.

In a written statement a council spokesperson says the changes are primarily driven by increased costs in electricity, fuel and insurance, in line with rising costs being seen across the country.

"Unfortunately, council cannot absorb these cost pressures."

The council has a policy that provides guidance on whether fees are full user pays, or partly rate funded and partly user pays.

"An example of this is dog control based on zero contribution from the rate payer, however, pools are partly rate funded and partly user pays."

The full council meets on Wednesday (June 26) to set the rates for the 2024 to 2025 financial year.

A link to a list of all proposed changes to council fees and charges can be found in the right-hand column here.

Main image: Central Otago dog Moose may cost his owners more next year if councillors sign off on a proposed 30 percent hike in registration fees next week.

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