No work on foot­paths

Te Puke Times - - NEWS -

For the first time in many years, Te Puke Com­mu­nity Board has a bud­get for new foot­paths.

How­ever, trans­lat­ing that into safe walk­ways is prov­ing to be frus­trat­ingly slow.

Af­ter agree­ing the num­ber one pri­or­ity would be a foot­path along Sta­tion Rd, it could be up to two years be­fore it is com­pleted.

Costs have come in at $88,000, but con­trac­tors Westlink have re­quested work be put off un­til the 2019-20 fi­nan­cial year to al­low the work to be done at the same time as sched­uled road re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion.

Board member Bev But­ton said she would pre­fer if the foot­path were put in now and the road­work done later.

“There are chil­dren and par­ents with pushchairs [us­ing the road]. We’ve been wait­ing two years — it’s ridicu­lous,” she said.

Chair­man Peter Miller said the dan­ger then would be that the new foot­path would be dam­aged.

Western Bay of Plenty District Coun­cil road­ing engineer Stu­art Har­vey said that was one of sev­eral rea­sons for de­lay­ing the foot­path work.

He said there was also likely to be cost sav­ing with the road and foot­path work be­ing done at the same time.

Coun­cil­lor John Scrim­geour said he un­der­stood con­cerns about the de­lay.

“I sup­port getting the best value for money,” he said.

Coun­cil­lor Grant Dally said he was con­cerned be­cause there had been no foot­paths con­structed so far dur­ing the cur­rent tri­en­nium.

“And we are in dan­ger of not do­ing any.”

Chair­man Peter Miller pointed out that un­til this year there had been no bud­get for new foot­paths, as the al­lo­cated money was com­mit­ted to re­pay­ing loans from the 2002 main street up­grade and con­struc­tion of the Her­itage Walk­way, and that had limited foot­path work to re­pairs only.

Grant for EPIC

An ap­pli­ca­tion for a grant of $500 by Te Puke Events and Pro­mo­tions (EPIC) to as­sist with the cost of traf­fic man­age­ment of Oc­to­ber’s Te Puke Treat trail was ap­proved.

Coun­cil­lor Grant Dally sug­gested the amount be dou­bled, but the sug­ges­tion re­ceived lit­tle trac­tion.

“I can’t re­mem­ber a [grant] re­quest com­ing to the board and be­ing in­creased,” chair­man Peter Miller.

Board member Joan Dug­more said traf­fic man­age­ment at the event last year was a “real dis­as­ter” and she didn’t like the idea of the pro­mo­tion in the mid­dle of town be­cause of traf­fic is­sues.

“Has any thought been given to hav­ing it in the park?” she asked.

Chair­man Peter Miller said EPIC had re­acted to com­plaints last year with proper traf­fic man­age­ment for this year’s event.

Coun­cil­lor John Scrim­geour said he un­der­stood board member Dug­more’s con­cerns.

“But the re­al­ity is, if we want peo­ple to come to town, we have to give them a rea­son.”

An ap­pli­ca­tion for a grant by Karyl Gunn-Thomas to as­sist with launch of her book, My Story, any prof­its from which would go to the It’s Not OK cam­paign, was turned down as not fit­ting the cri­te­ria for com­mu­nity board grant fund­ing.

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