Ver­coe op­posed to coun­cil merger

Matamata Chronicle - - Front Page - By AARON LEA­MAN

Mata­mata- Pi­ako’s long- serv­ing mayor has dis­tanced him­self from calls to form a greater Thames Val­ley uni­tary coun­cil, say­ing real ben­e­fits to ratepay­ers could come from shared ser­vices be­tween coun­cils.

Talk of pos­si­ble coun­cil merg­ers sur­faced last month when Thames Coro­man­del District Mayor Glenn Leach said he sup­ported calls for a uni­tary coun­cil on the penin­sula.

Mr Leach said an amal­gama- tion of three or four dis­tricts would have enough size to cre­ate a uni­tary author­ity.

But Waikato May­oral Fo­rum chair­man, Mata­mata- Pi­ako Mayor Hugh Ver­coe, said he did not sup­port Mata­mata- Pi­ako be­com­ing part of a uni­tary author­ity.

‘‘From my per­spec­tive such a sug­ges­tion is pre­ma­ture. I’d pre­fer coun­cils look at the var­i­ous func­tions they carry out and see if we can pro­vide bet­ter ser­vices to the peo­ple of the Waikato.’’

The may­oral fo­rum meets this week to dis­cuss the find­ings of work­ing par­ties look­ing at po­ten­tial coun­cil col­lab­o­ra­tion in plan­ning, road­ing, water and waste water.

Mr Ver­coe said the fo­rum was also in­ter­ested in ex­plor­ing a spa­tial plan for the re­gion.

He said the plan would take a holis­tic look at ‘‘eco­nomic, so­cial, cul­tural and en­vi­ron­men­tal as­pects’’.

Once a fund­ing mech­a­nism had been agreed on, may­ors would take the fo­rum’s rec­om­men­da­tions to their coun­cils for ap­proval.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.