PUTARURU INFORMATION CENTRE AT RISK
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I understand that funding from the South Waikato District Council is going to be withdrawn in June which will cause the centre to close.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for information – where will they go once the service no longer exists?another question arises: If the funding is withdrawn where will the finance go?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.