An increase in dog control fees, rural halls maintenance funding, and a proposal from Unison to rebuild a replacement substation at the rear of the Tutira Hall Reserve were all up for discussion at a recent Hastings District Rural Community Board meeting.

The rural board agreed to a 7% rise in dog control fees.

The proposed new fees now need to go to the full council for its decision, anticipated in April, and if approved the 2024/25 fees would come into effect on July 1 this year.

The Hastings District Council Rural Halls Maintenance Funding scheme is designed to assist with the building maintenance of halls in the rural and plains areas of Hastings. Post cyclone over $2,400,000 of non-council funding has been used to enhance the rural halls from various funders including Red Cross and MPI.

The rural board agreed to amend the funding scheme to give an equal $2000 grant to each hall to enable them to meet their specific needs. This now has to go to full council for consideration.

Cyclone Gabrielle impacted adversely on Unison’s infrastructure at Tutira.

Public Spaces and Building Assets Manager Colin Hosford said in order to build a more resilient network, Unison approached Council to discuss the potential of utilising a small portion of the Tutira Hall Reserve to relocate and upgrade the Tutira substation.

“While the proposal will ultimately need to meet the requirements of the Reserves Act 1977, initial community feedback to the proposal has been positive,” he said.

“To advance the proposal to the next stage, Unison seeks approval in principle from the Rural Community Board so that more detailed investment can be made on planning and design to produce a workable proposal for community engagement, prior to following the requisite Reserves Act 1977 processes.

“The proposal offers positive outcomes for the Tutira community and would ultimately benefit the whole community with the provision of an improved and more resilient power network.”

The rural board approved the proposal in principle.

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