Wellingtonians – Tell your council to Save Te Papa – here’s why!

Firstly, a huge huge HUGE thanks to our visitors who filled out forms and stuck post-its to the SOS – Save Our Services board over the Easter Holiday and Week One of the School Holidays. We are going to take your comments, share them with the community and also take them directly to Wellington City Council.

Wellington City Councillors have said that Te Papa’s funding cut lies in the hands of Wellington ratepayers. We need ratepayers to make official council submissions supporting a return of funding to its pre-cut level of $2.25 million dollars.

Why? Council is keen to get a steer from the community about what it values – and we have thousands of stickies (like this one below) telling us You value Te Papa. We just need you to tell the Council that directly now.

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Some Food for Thought

Council is trying to ensure that residential ratepayers get great Value for Money, which is something we all understand and support. However,  Residential Ratepayers aren’t responsible for the entire Wellington City Council contribution. Te Papa is classed as a Visitor Attraction in Council’s budgets for economic development and this budget is majority funded by the Downtown Levy (a Targeted Rate paid by the owners of commercial, industrial and business properties – check out page 118 of the Draft Annual Plan 2011/12 for more definitions).

Here’s the financial statement from the Wellington Council Draft Annual Plan (City Promotions, Attractions and Events) 2011/12 – In the figures for Funding you’ll notice that Targeted Rates (in this case, the Downtown Levy) contribute more than General Rates – this illustrates that for a fraction of the total Council contribution, residential ratepayers get a great value-for-money service from Te Papa, and its one we are proud to provide.

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So – while the Council’s big theme is ensuring residential ratepayers are being given value for money – we can prove that local Wellingtonians do get that bang for your buck! We’re proud that as Wellington businesses foot the majority of the bill , we’ve helped them by stimulating $59 million in visitor spending, and city residents can access Wellington City Free Days (to our premium exhibitions) and also be the first to enjoy our collections and displays free of charge.

We need our Wellington City ratepayers to tell the council directly – via official council submissions – written submissions open today.

With a HUGE thanks from the team at Te Papa

5 Responses

  1. filipomcgrath

    Hi there Friederike,
    Thanks for your feedback – every day we welcome visitors from around the corner and around the world, and we are proud to share experiences with every one! Enjoy the rest of your time in NZ and thanks for supporting Te Papa and our Wellington Tourist Attractions!

    Reply
  2. Friederike

    For me as a foreign visitor, Te Papa was the best museum I visited, ever. I spent hours browsing your impessive exhibitions. People in Wellington can be very proud of Te Papa and the way it teaches foreigners about New Zealand arts and culture.

    Reply
  3. filipomcgrath

    Hi there Steven B – thanks for that, wow interesting – our team will link up in the morning!

    And Hi peteremcc – totally get where you’re coming from, we especially don’t want to be an undue burden on anyone (our visitors or our funders) which is why we do everything we can to support our local and international visitors with great educational experiences and support our local business communities by sharing in the marketing of Wellington to the World and its visitors when they are here.

    Reply
  4. peteremcc

    Just because businesses pay lots doesn’t mean residents aren’t.

    Where do you think businesses get their money.

    Higher rates for businesses just mean higher prices for residents.

    Reply
  5. Steven B

    Nice article. You seem to value Wellington’s artistic and cultural heritage, so I think you might also be interested in this: https://www.facebook.com/SaveErskineCollege

    Erskine College has been standing in Wellington since before many suburbs were even thoughts, and now a company is letting it declined so as to demolish it and put townhouses on the site. Losing Erskine would be losing a hundred year’s worth of cultural and historical importance we can never get back. Perhaps you could write a piece on the situation at Erskine and I’ll link to your blog from the Erskine Facebook page? : )

    Reply

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