Ruapehu District Council

Auditing the Future: 2009

Ruapehu District Council is a small district council. It has fewer resources than many other councils, a wide geographical area, and a number of small discrete communities. With Mt Ruapehu and associated National Parks within or on its boundaries, it faces substantial demand to provide services in an environmentally appropriate way. It also needs to provide support for a growing tourism industry.

The Ruapehu District Council’s LTCCP focuses on structured responses to its community expressed desires (“outcomes”) and its legislative responsibility.

The LTCCP’s strengths are:

  • a sound explanation of the conceptual framework the Ruapehu District Council considers necessary for a future-focused long-term plan;
  • a good link to other crucial planning documents and processes; and
  • a structured approach to linking community outcomes to Ruapehu District Council’s own strategic goals, assessed levels of service, and performance indicators and targets. It appropriately differentiates between Ruapehu District Council’s contributions and outcomes that other relevant organisations will also contribute to.

The LTCCP contains two useful summaries of the planning process. The first summary is about the link between community outcomes, strategic goals, and council work programmes.

The second summary is an introduction to council activities. The summaries are supported by a thorough explanation of how the group of activities statements operate. This explanation emphasises the link of the groups of activities to the performance management framework and community outcomes.

A series of schedules that map the 42 community outcomes by well-being and activity (including a description of Ruapehu District Council’s role - provider, partner, funder, regulator, facilitator, or advocate) also support the reader’s understanding. In addition, the schedules note other stakeholders important in the delivery of each outcome.

To reinforce the contribution of Ruapehu District Council’s planned activities, it has organised its groups of activities by the four well-beings. This demonstrates a good understanding of the purpose of local government as set out in the Act. Clearly, judgement is required to decide which well-being each activity primarily relates to. Importantly, Ruapehu District Council recognises that, for example, an activity focusing on environmental outcomes is important to achieve other well-beings and outcomes.

The groups of activities information achieves a reasonable balance between being succinct and comprehensible for the reader yet providing sufficient detail. A detailed review in 2005 informed the levels of service information. An appropriate and useful level of detail for the

user is also provided on major capital projects, with an analysis into renewal expenditure, levels of service development, and new capital expenditure components.

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