RAL granted re­newal of Tu¯roa ski field li­cense

Taupo Times - - YOUR LOCAL NEWS - STUFF.CO.NZ

Ruapehu Alpine Lifts (RAL) has been granted a new li­cense to op­er­ate Mt Ruapehu’s Tu¯ roa, New Zealand’s sec­ond largest ski area.

The li­cence has an ini­tial term of 25 years plus seven fiveyear ex­ten­sions to­talling 60 years.

Ap­proved by the De­part­ment of Con­ser­va­tion, the new ap­proach to re-li­cenc­ing was first de­vel­oped by for­mer RAL chief ex­ec­u­tive Dave Mazey as part of the Whaka­papa ap­pli­ca­tion and fur­ther de­vel­oped for the Tu¯ roa li­cense in con­junc­tion with Ruapehu’s South­ern Iwi partners Uenuku and Nga¯ti Rangi.

‘‘We’re ab­so­lutely thrilled to reach this historic agree­ment to­gether with Nga¯ti Rangi, Uenuku and the De­part­ment of Con­ser­va­tion,’’ RAL chief ex­ec­u­tive Ross Co­p­land said.

‘‘To have se­cu­rity of ten­ure is of huge sig­nif­i­cance to the com­pany.

‘‘With less than five years to run on the ex­ist­ing li­cence, it was es­sen­tial that we reached this agree­ment to al­low us to in­vest, en­sur­ing that Tu¯ roa con­tin­ues to an­chor the win­ter econ­omy of Ohakune and the wider Ruapehu re­gion.’’

Iwi have sig­nif­i­cant in­flu­ence over the grant­ing of li­cence ex­ten­sions which oc­cur at 5-yearly in­ter­vals en­sur­ing a part­ner­ship ap­proach to man­age­ment of the ski ar­eas by virtue of gover­nance-level re­la­tion­ship groups which meet reg­u­larly to dis­cuss ma­jor projects, set ob­jec­tives and mon­i­tor per­for­mance against agreed KPI’s.

Nga¯ti Rangi Chair Shar Am­ner, and Uenuku Chair Ai­den Gil­bert says they are both look­ing for­ward to work­ing with RAL in line with their Re­la­tion­ship Agree­ments.

The new li­cence in­cludes pro­tec­tion of the peaks, wa­ter­ways and their sources.

Both Iwi Chairs agree that up­hold­ing their cul­tural val­ues has been paramount to dis­cus­sions. ‘‘This was to en­sure we are all able to con­tinue to en­joy the mag­nif­i­cence and unique­ness Koro of­fers us’’.

RAL Chair­man Mur­ray Gribben said RAL has a very long term view of its role in the com­mu­nity.

‘‘If not man­aged ap­pro­pri­ately, the im­pact ski area op­er­a­tions can have on the maunga,’’ he said.

‘‘We re­spect the longevity of our re­la­tion­ships with iwi and the wider com­mu­nity.’’

SUP­PLIED

Ruapehu Alpine Lifts has been granted a re­newal li­cense to op­er­ate Turoa ski field.

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