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Operating deficit worsens for local authorities
Embargoed until 10:45am  –  24 July 2013

Local Authority Financial Statistics: Year ended June 2012  –  Media Release

Local authorities’ spending exceeded income by $0.7 billion in the year ended June 2012, Statistics New Zealand said today. This is the largest operating deficit for local authorities since 1993, when we first recorded figures. Before June 2008, local authorities had successive operating surpluses (when income exceeded spending).

Local authorities’ operating income (funding they earn to provide core services) increased 6.0 percent for the year, to reach $7.8 billion. Alongside this, spending on core services rose 6.8 percent, to $8.4 billion. The main source of income for local authorities was rates, which increased 3.7 percent compared with the June 2011 year.

Local authorities own valuable assets. The value grew to $124.2 billion at 30 June 2012. Their liabilities were $12.3 billion.

Once all transactions (eg valuation changes and capital transfers) are considered, local authorities ran a surplus of $1.1 billion. However, this surplus is $2.4 billion lower than in 2011. In 2012, 72 percent of local authorities had a surplus (81 percent in 2011). Christchurch City Council, Auckland Council, and Wellington City Council had the largest surpluses.

The statistics released today are available for each local authority in New Zealand, for the year ended June 2012.

These statistics include some earthquake-related spending in Canterbury, although this expenditure is not separately identifiable. We will include further spending in Canterbury when this information becomes available.

Ends

 
For media enquiries contact: Authorised by:

Bernie Hanratty
Wellington 04 931 4600
Email: info@stats.govt.nz
Published 24 July 2013

Dallas Welch
Acting Government Statistician
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