The introduction of 30‑year Infrastructure Strategies added a new dimension to long‑term asset planning in local government.  In 2015 councils consulted on and completed their first Infrastructure Strategies.

Recent reviews by the Office of the Auditor General and Audit New Zealand have provided direction on what could be improved in future strategies. For example, signalling a need for councils to:

  • improve integration and alignment with the Financial Strategy and increase focus on financial sustainability
  • be clearer about the impact of significant issues, in particular the impact that changing demographics and demand will have on infrastructure
  • improve the quality of and be clearer about the assumptions which underpin the strategy
  • be clearer about the condition of assets and the quality of asset information
  • consider including more than core infrastructure

As councils begin preparing their 2018 Infrastructure strategies, it provides an opportunity to reflect on where improvements can be made.  Hill Young Coopers strategy specialist Coreen assisted a number of councils to prepare their 2015 Infrastructure Strategy and is currently working with Thames‑Coromandel District Council to review, revise and improve their 2018 Infrastructure Strategy.

Coreens’ approach is to work collaboratively with council staff, combining their asset management knowledge with her strategy expertise – she is looking forward to working with councils to take their Infrastructure Strategy to the next level.