From the Mayor
The coolest thing I’ve done recently is check out the Kaikōura Combined Adolescent Challenge Training Unit (CACTUS). The programme started 8 weeks ago with 34 participants aged 12 and up. 32 participants have now completed the course, the highest number to finish since the programme began.
These kids have been getting up well before dawn, three days a week, and taking part in fitness, leadership, teamwork and resilience exercises. All this hard work culminated in the Longest Day challenge which saw them complete several mental and physical challenges over 11 hours. The highlight for me was watching them lug logs up Ocean Ridge!
It was great to see them so focused, completing hard tasks but having fun and supporting each other at the same time. I spoke to one girl who was taking part in CACTUS for the third time. Congratulations to everyone involved and big thanks to the CACTUS coordinators.
The recent launch of the Mt Fyffe Distillery is another Kaikōura success story with Justine Schroder winning the Long Story Short New Zealand Emerging Product Award. Now that really is diversifying – from farming to gin making.
The Mayors Task Force for Jobs (MTFJ) have received another year of funding. Since October, the MTFJ has assisted 60 people into employment and apprenticeships. I am sure that unemployment is about half of what it could have been without MTFJ support, and hopefully we will get this lower with other opportunities that are happening in our community.
Last week the Council unanimously signed off the draft Long Term Plan (LTP) 2021 – 2031. 273 matters were raised in submissions from 71 people during the consultation period. It was good to see that the proposed options were all well supported. It shows we are on track to deliver changes and improvements in line with what the majority of the community want.
We are now looking at an overall rate increase of 5.9% for 2021/2022, and a ten-year average increase of 3.36%. This means we can really tackle some big issues and get the district up to scratch.
We’re still waiting to hear more about the Three Waters Reform before we can make a decision on what would be best for the district. Kaikōura has benefited from significant investment in our pipes and water services since the earthquake and our LTP shows we are not expecting any major work for a while. More information should come out over the next few weeks.
The days are slowly getting longer, look after yourselves.
31 May 2021