Urban funds to be pulled
A decision to spend another $ 30,000 on the Porirua train station was questioned by some Porirua city councillors last week, when the money was redirected from the Housing New Zealand urban renewal programme.
Greater Wellington Regional Council is spending more than $1 million to upgrade Porirua’s central train station but has asked PCC to stump up $30,000 to improve the bus shelter and footpath on Station Rd.
In a report to the city services committee on Thursday, it was suggested that the money come from the HNZ renewal budget ‘‘that is not going to proceed during the current financial year’’.
Mayor Nick Leggett asked if this was evidence of the Government scaling down the HNZ programme. Council general manager of strategy and planning Moira Lawler replied that there had been a ‘‘restructure’’ in terms of the project and the organisation was facing ‘‘budget restraints’’.
Councillor Euon Murrell raised concerns that state housing was being neglected in Porirua East.
‘‘If it means something is going to happen [at the station], then I’m for doing this, but we need to put pressure on Housing New Zealand. They need to front up more in this community, and they should come [to council meetings] on a regular basis. Housing renewal has been promised, and there has been a lot of inactivity in this area by previous governments – they have to spend the money where it is due.’’
Councillor Ken Douglas believed an official approach to HNZ was required, but the committee did not make a formal recommendation for this.
Despite the objections raised, councillors voted unanimously for the $30,000 going towards the train station upgrade.