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Cyclone Gabrielle: Two Category 3 property buy-out offers accepted

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By the end of this week the Cyclone Gabrielle Voluntary Buy-out Office will have conducted 100 meetings with eligible Category 3 property owners.

Two offers have also been accepted by Category 3 property owners meaning they can now move forward with their lives.

Settlement on one of the two properties purchased is expected to be completed this week and the other early in the new year.

The affected residents have homes in Category 3 areas that are considered too risky to live in during extreme weather events.

This means their residential properties have been eligible for the voluntary buy-out programme that is a joint project between Hastings District Council and Napier City Council.

The voluntary buy-outs are being funded 50/50 by Government and the council of the area the property is in.

Hastings District Council Manager Recovery and Special Projects Gus Charteris and Recovery Manager Richard Munneke of Napier City Council acknowledged it had been a long 10 months for affected families but said a lot of work had been done to get the process right for those involved.

“We are very pleased for these families who now have some certainty to move forward with their lives. We’re looking forward to additional offers being made before Christmas, and hopefully these will be accepted early in the new year.”

There are currently around 133 Category 3 properties in Hastings, and 14 in Napier, that are eligible for the voluntary buy-out. To date 51 valuations have been assigned to valuers and nine have been reviewed and reconciled (where the Council-commissioned valuation and the valuation commissioned by the property owner, if they choose to do this, are reviewed and reconciled).

Mr Charteris said he was pleased with the progress that was being made.

“The team has been working hard to move as quickly as possible to give families much needed certainty; we will inevitably have some more complex cases that will take longer to resolve.

“We are seeking feedback from property owners who have gone through the process so that we continue to adapt things to help us make it as smooth and efficient as possible for those affected.”

A dashboard has been created that will be regularly updated to show progress that is being made with the buy-outs. It can be found here.

19 December 2023

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