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'Special projects' funding ready to be spent

February 16th, 2017
[by David Armstrong]

The allocation of funds to Motueka Community Board's "special projects" will near completion next week with the board to decide on a recommended list that was based on community input.

The $48,549 fund, built from an annual $10 per ratepayer target Motueka rate, has been sitting for about a year awaiting resolution of differing opinions on policies around certain items. (See our earlier story.)

Following a ranking process open to all conducted last year through the Guardian paper and this website, a final list of 12 projects were chosen in September.

However, interpretation by TDC of its current policy forbade the fund being spent on two of the chosen items - maintenance of the security camera system and helping fund the litter cart operation.

The final list, which the community board is expected to approve on Tuesday, has three sections - six projects to be immediately approved and actioned, five deferred for further investigation and one approved subject to policy change.

Immediate allocation of total funding of $35,000 for the following projects:

  1. Motueka Historic Wharf redevelopment - $5000 towards the Council's landscaping costs for the Old Wharf area.
  2. High Street Security Cameras - $5000 to be provided to Motueka Community Patrol towards the capital cost of the security cameras.
  3. Saltwater Baths Flood Gate - provide $5000 to the Council towards meeting new operating safety standards. Note this work has been completed.
  4. Motueka & Districts Museum, air conditioning/lighting upgrade - provide $10,000 to the Motueka Museum Trust Board for this work to be completed.
  5. Enhance the entranceway to the northern end of the Marahau Beach - Provide $5000 to the Marahau Residents Association for the enhancement of this area.
  6. Play equipment for the Newhaven Reserve - Provide $5000 towards the Council's playground project at the Newhaven Reserve.

These projects will be deferred subject to staff confirming costs, feasibility, timing and approval of the Engineering Services Committee and/or the Council:

  1. Kerb and channel Old Wharf Road - TDC estimates this work will cost around $15,000.
  2. Drinking bottle fill point on High Street - TDC to confirm the cost for this work, a confirmed location of the filling point and ongoing costs for supplying water from the Council's water supply.
  3. Wallace Street footpath - TDC estimates this work will cost between $10,000 and $15,000.
  4. Welcome to Motueka Sign - deferred until ongoing maintenance costs, the location of the signage and roading health and safety issues are resolved.
  5. Footpath on the southern side of Courtney Street - staff estimate this work will cost approximately $15,000.

The final item is $4000 per annum to help operating costs of the Litter Cart. This is subject to the Council approving the necessary change to the Special Projects Fund criteria. Council sets the funding policy.

Because of the delay in settling the projects list, and especially the policy around it, there is now two years worth of funding available to be spent, or $94,945.

The report making these recommendations cautions "community board members who hold office with potential funding receivers should take care to manage their conflict of interest during this process".

It also notes that "the Motueka Litter Cart proposal does not meet the criteria and cannot proceed until the Council formally approves a change to the Special Projects Funding criteria".

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