Kaipara to get update on council mess

Kaipara residents will have the opportunity this month to be updated on what has happened since government-appointed commissioners took over running the Kaipara District Council.

The commissioners will hold public meetings at the Mangawhai Club from 9.30am on February 18, Maungaturoto Country Club from 1pm on February 18, and in the council chambers at Dargaville from 4pm on February 19.

Commission chairman John Robertson said: "We are now keen to engage with the public. We've tackled some of the most pressing issues and, with input from the community, have formed a view on the most sensible next steps. Now it's time for Kaipara people to hear from us directly in public meetings."

The commissioners, who were called in after council debt soared to around $80 million, will present details on what they have done to stabilise the financial situation, cap debt and monitor contracts.

They will explain their findings on historic errors, what they are doing to correct these and what impacts this will have on residents.

Mr Robertson said that, while much of the past five months had focused on the mistakes of the past, the commissioners had also been working with council management to identify the best route forward.

"These plans balance the need for careful financial management and efficiency gains with the need for improved community services and infrastructure," he said.

- Northern Advocate

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