Council offered Ohau prime land for $1
Prime land opposite a Horowhenua vineyard could soon be in council hands for just $1.
The sale was due to go to a vote at a Horowhenua District Council meeting in July, but it was cancelled after six councillors put in their apologies.
This was the first full council meeting to be cancelled for three terms.
Now the cheap 3113 square metre lot remains unclaimed by the council and the matter will be discussed at this month’s meeting.
Bishop Vineyard Owners Association project manager Barry Clevely said the association was ’’gifting’’ the lot on Pinot Cres to the council.
But the transaction had dragged after the meeting was cancelled and Clevely hoped the sale would be finalised as soon as possible, he said.
If the sale went ahead, part of the agreement was that the council would not build on the land unless it was for the good of the community, such as constructing a playground, Clevely said.
Clevely wanted the space to serve the community as there were limited public fields in the area, he said.
The council declined to comment until the subject had been discussed at the council meeting on August 30.
Council communications adviser Kelvin Teixeira said it would be inappropriate to provide further information until a decision was made by councillors.
However, Teixeira did confirm that deputy mayor Wayne Bishop was not involved with the association.
July’s report, written by council customer and development enabler Melissa Hanson, said the section was opposite a vineyard and had views of the Tararua Ranges, which would provide a peaceful and reflective open space for the public.
The nearest recreational domain is adjacent to State Highway 1, about a 10-minute walk from Pinot Cres, Hanson said.
Ongoing costs of the $1 land were $1750 per year, she said.
‘‘Should [the] council agree to the transfer the site it will be maintained under the existing grounds maintenance contract.’’
Bishop Vineyard Owners Association was responsible for legal costs and the cost of supplying a commemorative plaque, Hanson said.