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Mayor’s message

mayor h and s

Investing in critical assets is the focus of the Hastings District Council’s Long Term Plan 2021 – 2031, which was adopted on June 24.

Council considered more than 700 community responses, including 165 formal submissions and the message was clear; maintaining essential assets, managing growth, addressing housing needs and continued investment in the community were the overriding priorities of the community and of the draft plan.

I’d like to thank everyone for their feedback which helped inform councillors as they heard from submitters, then deliberated on the plan for two days.

The fundamental basis of this plan is our continued investment in core infrastructure.  This means delivering water, waste and road services.

Last year our rate increase was 1.9 per cent.  We didn’t know then what the future would look like and how Covid-19 would impact on jobs for the community.  This year, we are returning to asset renewals and finishing off our drinking water infrastructure work.  We asked council officers to come back with a rate increase under seven per cent.

Councillors considered many funding applications for wonderful community projects. Unfortunately we can’t fulfil all of these requests immediately. We are very aware that many of our community are on fixed incomes and we have to be mindful of the rates burden.

Three key issues were identified during consultation; rural roads, parking and continued investment in Hastings’ city centre.

We know roads are important for our rural community, playing a vital role in the region’s economy, and Council agreed to fund a renewal programme over the next six years.

Parking was another issue the consultation process highlighted.  Council agreed to adopt the proposed car parking fee rises in Hastings from 50c for off-street parking to $1.50 and from $1 for on-street parking to $2. Council also adopted a small increase in the Havelock North targeted parking rate from $23 to $30 for residential properties and from $69 to $90 for commercial properties.

Council also agreed to continue investing in the city centre after feedback from the community.

Sandra Hazlehurst

28 June 2021

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