PU­TARURU IN­FOR­MA­TION CEN­TRE AT RISK

South Waikato News - - Conversations - Leighton Collins, Pu­taruru

I write re­gard­ing the clo­sure of the Pu­taruru In­for­ma­tion cen­tre. I find this to­tally un­ac­cept­able. The res­i­dents of Pu­taruru pay their rates to have the fa­cil­ity in the town.

It tran­spires that there are 30-40 vis­its a day from both tourists and pub­lic alike.

The Pu­taruru i-site is manned by a staff of two ladies (on dif­fer­ent days) that al­ways leave the cus­tomer feel­ing as if they have been well looked af­ter and ad­vised of their al­ter­na­tives.

I un­der­stand that fund­ing from the South Waikato District Coun­cil is go­ing to be with­drawn in June which will cause the cen­tre to close.

In­ter­na­tional vis­i­tors, na­tional vis­i­tors and lo­cals visit the i-site for in­for­ma­tion – where will they go once the ser­vice no longer ex­ists?an­other ques­tion arises: If the fund­ing is with­drawn where will the fi­nance go? Toko­roa?i would be happy to form a Char­i­ta­ble Trust to raise grants to keep the cen­tre from clos­ing.

If you would be in­ter­ested in sav­ing our I Site please txt me on 027 4282 2181 and leave a mes­sage with your phone num­ber.

We must save a ser­vice that brings peo­ple to our town. Coun­cil re­sponse: Coun­cil de­cided to close the Puta¯ ruru I-SITE dur­ing the LTP process last year. The us­age in terms of lo­cals ver­sus vis­i­tors showed that lo­cal vis­i­tors fluc­tu­ated per quar­ter from 69 per cent to 87 per cent; do­mes­tic vis­i­tors be­tween 11 per cent and 20 per cent and in­ter­na­tional vis­i­tors be­tween 1 per cent and 13 per cent. By com­par­i­son, Tı¯rau’s I-SITE fig­ures com­piled for the re­port were 5 per cent lo­cals, 65 per cent do­mes­tic vis­i­tors and 30 per cent in­ter­na­tional vis­i­tors. I-SITE clo­sures around New Zealand are oc­cur­ring gen­er­ally – of the 91 I-SITES op­er­at­ing on 1 July 2012, 80 re­mained by 30 June 2013. This fig­ure has since dropped fur­ther. In terms of the fund­ing, I-SITE fund­ing in the South Waikato is district funded, not ward funded. Coun­cil has re­ceived a sub­mis­sion on its cur­rent An­nual Plan to take over the ser­vices of­fered at the Puta¯ ruru I-SITE. This de­ci­sion will be made as part of the de­lib­er­a­tion process com­ing in May.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.