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‘Better off’ funding projects to be submitted

wairoa town river

The Wairoa District Council’s list of priority projects came a step closer on Tuesday when elected members opted to accept Central Government’s Three waters ‘better off’ multimillion dollar funding package.

In accepting the $4.66 million ‘better off package, elected members stressed that each of the agreed projects are subject to ongoing engagement with mana whenua and scoping with elected members.

The funding is Tranche 1 of Wairoa’s share of part of a $2.5 billion Government funding package to support all territorial authorities to transition to the new water services delivery system, and to position councils for the future. 

It is labelled by the Department of Internal Affairs as a ‘better off’ package which is an investment by the crown into the future for local government and community wellbeing.

The following project list will now be submitted for approval by the Department of Internal Affairs:

  • Mortuary waste system ($130,000).
  • Nuhaka-Opoutama Road (Blowhole) dropout repair ($2.42m contribution).
  • Pensioner housing – healthy homes upgrades ($198,000).
  • Winter’s building i-Site development ($550,000 contribution).
  • Library refurbishment / ‘Community Hub’ ($550,000 contribution),
  • Riverside campground improvements ($176,000 contribution).
  • Nga Manu o Taiharuru / Mahia recreational spaces ($60,000 contribution).
  • Tuai Destination Playground ($300,000 contribution – yet to be costed).
  • Standring Park Netball Courts Upgrade ($250,000 contribution)

Elected members also agreed to a list of backup projects in case any of the other projects cannot be completed. These are: An extension, predominantly for storage, at the Wairoa Community Centre ($400,000), a Powdrell Park subdivision feasibility study ($100,000) and a water theme park at Alexandra Park ($500,000) yet to be costed.

The projects being put forward are in line with the funding eligibility criteria around prioritisation factors and wellbeing assessment, as well as strict timelines with the funding needing to be spent by June 30, 2027.

Elected members re-prioritised some of the projects noting the resurfacing of the Standring Park netball courts as a priority because of the resurgence of netball. They also questioned the objectives of the library refurbishment while noting that a scoping project had been externally funded and undertaken and the final project has been scoped back and is aimed at being a community hub celebrating the whakapapa of Manukanui.

19 August 2022

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