May 2018 - Chairman's Report

10 May 2018, 2:43 PM

Strategic issues:

Long Term Plan submissions

Preliminary analysis of the Long Term Plan (LTP) submissions appears to indicate quite strong support for the council's proposals in the Consultation Document. Detailed consideration of these submissions will take place at our LTP Deliberations meeting on 16 May 2018, which is the day after this council meeting.

Economic development of the region

The Northland Regional Council remains committed to the economic development of our region. It is only growth in our local economy that can provide more and better jobs for the people who live here. It is more and better jobs that will ultimately lift our region from the bottom of the heap socio-economically.

Northland Inc. is a hugely important entity for driving that economic development and the council is delighted to have received applications from many highly talented people for positions on the board of Northland Inc. Appointments will be made in time for the start of the new financial year on 1 July 2018.

In the meantime, we would still like to see better engagement from the district councils in a joint effort through participating in a jointly owned Council Controlled Organisation (CCO). Ultimately having all four councils in the region as joint owners of Northland Inc. would be a great outcome.

Find out more about Northland Inc

Meeting with Hon Phil Twyford - Minister of Transport

The members of the Northland Mayoral Forum were disappointed by Minister Twyford's response to our request to keep the four lane highway between Northland and Auckland on the Government's plan when we met in Wellington on 11 April.

Our disappointment became even more intense with the Government's announcement of a $28 billion transport plan for Auckland. Whilst Northland has always supported the importance of dealing to Auckland's transport woes as being critical to the progress of New Zealand Inc., and stood in line while major projects like improvements to Spaghetti Junction and the constructing of the Waterview tunnel were completed, in our view it was Northland's turn for significant investment.

If the Government is serious about economic development in Northland, it needs to properly sort out our major transport lifeline, State Highway 1, and not just tinker with it!