New busi­nesses test coun­cil devel­op­ment

South Waikato News - - NEWS - By CAITLIN WAL­LACE

Red car­pet is be­ing rolled out for new busi­ness own­ers rather than red tape, ac­cord­ing to South Waikato District Coun­cil.

A busi­ness case man­age­ment [ BCM] pro­gramme was launched in April this year.

BCM man­ager Alan Moss said the process is the mid­dle man between coun­cil pro­cesses and new busi­ness own­ers.

What was once con­sid­ered a ‘‘red tape’’ process is now seen as a ‘‘red car­pet’’ ex­pe­ri­ence, he said.

So far around 45 busi­nesses have tested out the new devel­op­ment.

Alana Ramea and mother Leeanne opened up Hair HQ salon in June un­der the BCM pro­gramme.

Fol­low­ing the clo­sure of two sa­lons last year, the duo de­cided there was the ‘‘niche’’ for a new one.

The 31-year old hair­dresser found the per­fect build­ing on Rose­bery St in March but be­fore they could whip out the scis­sors and straight­en­ers they needed to go through coun­cil.

‘‘I kind of went around the process back to front be­cause I didn’t know, this is my first busi­ness,’’ she said.

She said the coun­cil slowed the process but never put up red tape.

‘‘When I got to the coun­cil they said ‘ no you need to have all th­ese things in place’,’’ she said.

‘‘They [coun­cil work­ers] were re­ally good, they didn’t make you feel like you couldn’t ask ques­tions,’’ Ramea said.

It was some­thing she took ad­van­tage of.

‘‘ We wanted to serve our cus­tomers cof­fee in ac­tual cups and we got that we just had to have a sep­a­rate area be­cause of con­tam­i­na­tion,’’ she said.

And de­spite chal­leng­ing the coun­cil of some de­ci­sions she said the rea­sons were ex­plained clearly.

Ac­cord­ing to Moss the pro­gramme has hit the ground run­ning with an ‘‘ex­tremely pos­i­tive’’ re­sponse.

Other busi­nesses in the district that took part in­clude Toko­roa’s Blue Pacific Min­er­als and the Wooden Farmer in Pu­taruru.

Other ideas raised in­clude spring wa­ter bot­tling plants, a dog day care fa­cil­ity in Toko­roa, a childcare cen­tre in Toko­roa and an art gallery in Ti­rau.

‘‘Quite of­ten ini­tial en­quiries are made and the per­son mak­ing the en­quiry has re­quested that their en­quiry re­main con­fi­den­tial,’’ Moss said.

What do you think of coun­cil’s new BCM pro­gramme?

Send your let­ter to South Waikato News, 62- 66 Bridge St Toko­roa or email swaikato.ed­i­tor@wrcn.co.nz

Photo: CAITLIN WAL­LACE

Fill­ing up: Hair HQ own­ers Alana Ramea, front, and mother Leeanne are tes­ti­ment to the new ‘‘red car­pet’’ busi­ness case man­age­ment pro­gramme set up by the South Waikato District Coun­cil.

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