News and Publications

Property News - 6 June 2017

EQC Levies rise 33%

Last week’s Government budget announcement included measures to top up the National Disaster Fund, which pays out claims related to earthquake damage. This will mean that homeowners’ insurance premiums are set to rise by up to $69 a year.

At present, insured homeowners pay a premium rate of 15c per $100 of insurance cover, to a maximum of $207 a year (based on the maximum cover of $100,000 for buildings and $20,000 for contents). In November, that will rise to 20c per $100 of cover, to a maximum of $276 a year.

The National Disaster Fund has paid out $9.5 billion so far in claims to people affected by the Canterbury earthquakes. Another $550m is expected to be paid out for claims related to the Kaikoura Earthquake. That had exhausted the fund’s reserves, Finance Minister Joyce said.

“The Earthquake Commission has a Government guarantee and $4.7 billion in re-insurance cover, so homeowners will be covered if there is another natural disaster. But we need to start the process of replenishing the fund so it is available to contribute to future natural disasters.”

Under the higher levy, the fund would be restored to this level within 10 years.

For more information see Austinsure News article.

(Austinsure newsletter, Monday 29 May 2017)

Waimea dam plan 'head and shoulders' above other options

The water on the Waimea Plains has been over allocated. However, while the allocation of water was not growing, the population was increasing, creating a mismatch. Money would need to be spent on augmentation.

‘‘From what I’ve seen, this [dam] is the best of a lot of options by far – it’s head and shoulders above in terms of efficacy,’’ Hutton said.

‘‘In terms of achieving water quality goals, environmental goals and security of supply goals, it ticks all the boxes at a relatively good cost.’’

The more complex way of looking at the project was to tear it apart and analyse every area such as water security, environmental aspects and the financial model, ‘‘which people are welcome to do during the consultation process’’.

(The Nelson Mail, Tuesday 30 May 2017)

Suter supreme

The Suter Gallery has had a winning month, taking home seven awards in total.

On the back of winning the Museum Project Excellence Award at the Service IQ 2017 New Zealand Museum Awards, they have also won big at the New Zealand Commercial Project Awards, winning a Gold Award and a National Category Winner Award from entries submitted by Scott Construction Limited.

The New Zealand Architecture Awards saw the redeveloped Suter Gallery recognised in four categories including Nelson Marlborough Heritage and Nelson Marlborough Public Architecture.

(The Nelson Mail, Tuesday 30 May 2017)

Dam costs tipped to increase

Tasman district councillors will be asked if they want to stay around the negotiating table for the proposed Waimea dam as estimated operational costs are expected to rise.

Mayor Richard Kempthorne said an original estimate of about $700,000 a year was based on the operational costs for the Wai-iti Valley Community Dam ‘‘and scaled up’’.

However, the ‘‘actual’’ operational costs for the proposed dam in the Lee Valley were being ‘‘worked up’’ and looked likely to be higher.

Kempthorne said he could not say how much bigger that total could be but the new estimate was expected to be ready in time for a full council meeting scheduled for June 14.

Kempthorne said he had received an indication from councillors at a workshop that they would agree to stay at the negotiating table.

No decisions can be made at workshops, which are held behind closed doors. Decisions have to be made at council meetings.

McKenzie said the motivation to stay at the table was that the proposed dam still provided the ‘‘least-cost’’ option to augment the council’s water supply.

TDC has earmarked $25 million in its Long Term Plan 2015-25 for the dam, which has an estimated total project cost of $82.5m.

A final decision is not expected before August.

The council is planning to consult with the community later this year before it makes a final decision on the dam project but wanted a build price for the dam before that public consultation.

(The Nelson Mail, Saturday 3 June 2017)

Store decision delay

The countdown has extended for a decision that could pave the way for a new supermarket at the entrance to Richmond.

An independent commissioner’s recommendation has been finalised on a private plan change request by Progressive Enterprises Ltd to enable a consent application for a proposed 3200 square metre Countdown supermarket along with a small retail/commercial development, a community facility, associated car parking, access and landscaping.

Commissioner David McMahon, under delegation from Tasman District Council, considered the plan change request, which seeks the rezoning of about 1.32 hectares of residential land on the corner of Champion and Salisbury roads.

It was notified in March 2016 and McMahon heard submissions on the proposal in October.

After the meeting, environment and planning manager Dennis Bush-King said the intention was to put the matter before councillors in a confidential session of a full council meeting scheduled for June 14.

If the council received the recommendation, it would be released to all parties who had a right to appeal and be made public ‘‘as soon as possible’’.

(The Nelson Mail, Saturday 3 June 2017)

Thought for the Week

I long to accomplish a great and noble task;
but my chief duty is to accomplish small tasks as if they were great and noble.

(Helen Keller)