After being on ratepayer associations and other organisations dealing with councils, it is very different having to understand how the system works. After eight weeks I have found that all the operations budget for 2016/17 is already committed. This does not mean that things can’t be changed as long as they come within the budgeted constraints up to the end of the financial year in June.
When the Council resumes in the New Year to set up the Annual Plan, this is the time to make submissions to Council for projects to be done in 2017/18. The Council representative that you voted for has 24 months to try to meet your expectations and stay within the Council budget set until 2019/20
We know Wellsford has not been serviced well in the last six years, the Council knows this has to change and I intend to do my best to make this known loud and clear. What I have been doing:
Araparera Joint Venture – I am collecting more information that the northern ward ratepayers were not previously given. Hopefully, this will give us a way forward to closing this sorry mess.
Roading – I am working with Auckland Council to find solutions to the frustrations the Council and the ratepayers are having with unsealed roads. It will take time. The Council is working hard to find solutions and, with my background in contracting, I think this is now achievable.
Stormwater – I have found that rural areas do not have stormwater and yet we have been paying for this service for years; with no drainage our infrastructure will fail.
Greenways – The Greenways project for Wellsford has been approved. Wendy Crow-Jones and the Wellsford Sports Collective are the drivers behind this project. This project is Super City wide and gaining huge momentum with trust grants pouring into towns and surrounding areas that want to take ownership of their towns. This is the type of project that brings recognition to our town investing in footpaths, trees and other structures.
Watercare – I have started the process of looking into Wellsford water and waste water systems. Watercare has been informed and are looking into the problems we are facing. I will be pursuing this problem in the New Year. Our systems are way overdue for a major upgrade.
Wishing everyone a happy and prosperous New Year.