1st day of Annual Plan Submissions WDC

The 12th of May 2010 is the start of Annual Plan Submissions for the Whangarei District Council; with approximately 21 submitters today, many held a similar tone.

There were some who implied that Council was not listening to the public or to the people, and others that stated of their wish lists or their wish not lists, with the Whangarei's fourth harbour crossing seeming to come up from time to time.

Zelka Grammer representing "GE Free Northland” praised both the Councillors and the Council staff for their reinforced stance on a GE Free Northland.

David Bayliss showed a series of photos taken around Princes Road in Ruakaka, showing where erosion had taken hold of the roading and properties, and therefore when flooding happened how some properties were severely compromised.

The NRC even made a submission to the WDC, where they stated that they would like the councils to work together more…

There were many presenters today where you could see that their submission was made from the heart and was very personal to them, but I feel that the today’s best presentation has to go to Brett Sawyers representing the Whangarei Economic Development Group. 

Their submission covered Parking, both Park and Ride and Pay on exit schemes to be progressed, along with concerns and protection of the CBD area of Whangarei.  They encouraged Council to start planning for the future for transportation issues, Water supply, parks and a Hotel, and also supported Council towards the settlement support programs and the sale of non-strategic land.

WDEG was however very concerned with Councils existing rating system where commercial and industrial properties are charged with a differential rating of 5 times that of a residential property, this is more than any other region in New Zealand, and due to the sudden increase in property land values is making it too expensive for someone to own a property in Whangarei.

I personally want you to understand that your concerns are very much being listened to Whangarei, and our rating system needs to urgently be looked at.  We must be realistic, and protect our future, the future of businesses within our city as well as the rural sector, for in economic hardships it is the people who band together who survive.