Com­mu­nity re­fuses to fund hall re­vival

Matamata Chronicle - - Your Paper, Your Place - PET­RICE TAR­RANT

A ma­jor­ity of Wa­haroa ratepay­ers are re­fus­ing to pay an ex­tra $3.50 to save the town’s me­mo­rial hall from sale.

Wa­haroa Me­mo­rial Hall, which is run by a four-man com­mit­tee, is most likely liv­ing out its last days as a com­mu­nity ven­ture.

Chair­per­son Al­lan Mayo said the com­mit­tee found out late last year that the roof needed re­plac­ing but the Mata­mata Pi­ako District Coun­cil re­fused to fund the re­pairs, stat­ing that hall main­te­nance was sup­posed to be funded by Wa­haroa ratepay­ers through an an­nual tar­geted rate.

But with only $10.50 com­ing in from 293 ratepay­ers an­nu­ally there wasn’t enough to cover the ex­pected $32,000 ex­pense, Mayo said.

The com­mit­tee sent out fly­ers to Wa­haroa ratepay­ers and the ver­dict in­di­cated that only 25 per cent were will­ing to pay the pro­posed $13.50 fee re­quired to re­pair the roof.

‘‘No one’s pre­pared to cough up the cash so we need to sell it,’’ Mayo said.

He said they had un­til April be­fore the Ward St build­ing would be put on the mar­ket or gifted back to the orig­i­nal, but still uniden­ti­fied, donor.

‘‘We were re­ally dis­ap­pointed to be hon­est that no one was pre­pared to take that [rate] on.’’

He said the hall us­age has dropped re­cently too, adding more fi­nan­cial strain on the com­mit­tee.

The hireage prices ranged from $20 to $150 de­pend­ing on the event, but they were open to ne­go­ti­a­tion.

‘‘If [the com­mu­nity] came to us and said th­ese prices are too dear, we’d work with them. But they don’t,’’ Mayo said.

Coun­cil in­di­cated that if it was sold to a pri­vate iden­tity, that it would likely go for cheap, he said.

Mayo said it would be un­likely to fetch govern­ment val­u­a­tion, $280,000 for it.

‘‘It could very well go for $50,000 we don’t know,’’ Mayo said.

Re­gard­less of price, the Wa­haroa res­i­dent said it would be sad to see the 70-year-old build­ing go to any­one but the com­mu­nity.

‘‘There have been birth­days, wed­ding an­niver­saries, cook­ing groups and even church take place there.

‘‘To be hon­est with you it’s a nice hall. We’ve done a lot of work to keep it tidy.’’

Wa­haroa res­i­dent Al­lan Mayo said it will be sad to see the me­mo­rial hall sold pri­vately.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.