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Council's Long Term Plan ready for consultation

February 24th, 2012
[from TDC press release]

The Tasman District Council has settled on its draft Long Term Plan and will release it for public consultation.

One key feature is the proposal that works on roads, footpaths and cycleways will be cut sharply for the next three years, in order to keep the rates increase to affordable levels.

Reviewed every three years, the Long Term Plan provides direction to the Council's decision-making for the next 10 years. Tasman Mayor Richard Kempthorne called it a sound and responsible plan focused on supporting the growth of the whole district.

"Our priorities are to maintain the existing core infrastructure, and provide the platform for our growing communities to expand. We'll also continue to meet our many legislative requirements at an affordable cost to ratepayers.

"In order to achieve this we have made a number of proposed changes to what was planned in the current Ten Year Plan 2009-2019. These changes include large reductions in the transportation and roading area, particularly removal of most cycleway projects, seal extensions, some streetscaping and undergrounding of powerlines, and any new footpaths, for the first three years.

"This has given us the ability to propose a general rate rise of 4.75% for the next year with an average throughout the 10 years of 4.26% p.a.. Against a backdrop of inflation at 3.8% and a district wide growth-rate of 1.3%, this is an example of maintaining the delivery of essential services at an affordable cost." Targeted rate changes are additional to those figures.

"The unqualified seal of approval from the Audit Office for the draft plan should provide ratepayers with confidence that the Council has approached and delivered this project with prudence and that it is financially sound," Mr Kempthorne said.

The plan has driven by the varying needs and preferences of the residents in Tasman's 17 settlements, but one project demands special attention.

"Within this draft plan is the biggest project Council has planned for many years - the Lee Valley Dam. This is such a significant project for the District's ongoing economic and social viability we are holding two specific meetings to discuss it and the impact it will have on the community," said Mr Kempthorne.

The consultation period closes at 4.30pm on 3rd April. To assist in the consultation of the plan, a number of discussion sessions will be held throughout the District:

6 March  -  Brightwater Community Association, 7.00pm.
12 March  -  Mapua Hall, 4.00pm - 6.00pm;  Mapua Community Association, 7.45pm.
13 March  -  Wakefield Village Hall, 4.00pm - 6.00pm;  Wakefield Community Association, 7.30pm.
14 March  -  Takaka Fire Brigade Hall, 2.00pm - 4.30pm;  Collingwood Sunday School, 6.30pm - 8.00pm.
19 March  -  Murchison Community Recreation Centre, 2pm - 4pm;  Tapawera Community Centre, 7pm - 9pm.
20 March  -  St John Hall, Motueka, 4.00pm - 5.30pm - 7.00pm - 9.00pm. 22 March  -  Richmond - Council Chamber, 2.00pm - 4.30pm;  Richmond Forum, 7.30pm.

The two additional meetings dedicated to the Lee Valley Dam:

16 March  -  Appleby School, 4.00-7.00pm.
21 March  -  Tasman District Council Richmond, 3.00 - 6.00pm.

A summary of the Long Term Plan will be delivered to each household with the copies of the full plan available from Tasman District Council offices and libraries from 1 March. The full plan will also be available on request and online at the Council's website.


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