Auckland Council drives value for money programme

In March 2017 the Finance and Planning Committee approved a three year programme to review effectiveness and value for money across the major activity and service lines of the Auckland Council Group, to ensure that its services continue to best meet Auckland’s needs for good quality infrastructure, local public services and performance of regulatory functions into the future.

The council voted today in favour of a review in the services that are delivered regarding Parks and Open Space service management. Activities subject to this review include both regional and local parks and open spaces including sports fields, walkways, cycleways and reserves and open spaces. The review scope excludes cemeteries and library service management which will be subject to a separate review of community facility services.

Councillors were assured that ’value’ in terms of the review was also considering social and cultural amenity, as well as financial value.    

Mayor Phil Goff said, “It is vital that the council delivers on its objectives for Aucklanders as efficiently and as effectively as possible.

“It is fundamental that Aucklanders have trust and confidence in us; that we are getting the best possible return on our scarce resources.

“For that reason we need to carry out reviews to ensure that those we task with the delivery of services are delivering full value for ratepayers,” commented Mayor Goff.

Below is a summary of the decisions made at the committee.

Items 1-8 were administrative items.

Item 9: Value for Money (s17A) Review Programme

Over the next two decades, the Auckland Council Group is seeking to spend over $60 billion.  In this context, it is important to continue the drive for efficiency savings.  This plan is to be achieved against a backdrop of rapid population growth, increased demand in public services including associated infrastructure investment and a requirement to maintain service levels within an environment of continuing budget constraints.

The Finance and Performance Committee has resolved as part of its mandate to approve a programme of value-for-money reviews, as required under S17A of the Local Government Act 2002. The programme of value-for-money reviews is sponsored by the Group Financial Officer, as Lead Officer reporting to the Finance and Performance Committee.

The programme has delivered a framework to evaluate expenditure and to provide greater accountability to the Governing Body and the ratepayer on what is being achieved with public expenditure.  The objective of the programme is to analyse cost effectiveness in a systematic manner across the Auckland Council Group and to provide a basis on which more informed decisions can be made on long-term planning priorities.

The Finance and Performance Committee approved the selected services and the proposed Terms of Reference for the Value for Money (s17A) reviews of Group Procurement and the Parks and Open Spaces Service Management.

The committee also delegated to the political oversight group the authority to approve the services for future reviews as well as the associated terms of reference in consultation with the members of the Value for Money programme.

The agenda is available on Auckland Council’s website and minutes will be added once confirmed. This meeting was also webcast on the council’s website and items are available on demand.