Rotorua Daily Post health and business reporter

Lakes community board has big plans ahead

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Water quality is a focus of the newly elected Rotorua Lakes Community Board. PHOTO/FILE
Water quality is a focus of the newly elected Rotorua Lakes Community Board. PHOTO/FILE

The new Rotorua Lakes Community Board is looking to make a step up and take on more responsibilities this term, according to re-elected member Phill Thomass.

Mr Thomass, who was the only member who sought re-election, said it was great to see three new faces on the board as it headed into the new term.

Mr Thomass said the Rotorua Lakes Council had indicated the board would get some new responsibilities this term, following recommendations from the Electoral Commission.

"I think it will be a busy three years with new responsibilities and delegations we are expecting."

He said things up for negotiation included the possibility of having a seat on two of the council's subcommittees, as well as being given a small budget to manage.

Mr Thomass said the review of the Lakes A Zone in the district plan was another big area which the community board hoped to be involved in.

Top polling candidate Jim Stanton said there was plenty to be done.

He said he was looking forward to furthering the committee's ability to participate in the decision making process.

"To that end we have some expectations on getting a little closer to the council table and also getting some delegation."

He said those extra powers were not in place yet but they had "a lot of optimism" that the community board's role would be extended.

Mr Stanton said ongoing priorities included the involvement in the sewerage schemes at Rotoma and Rotoiti.

He said the Tarawera Sewerage Scheme was also an extremely important project as well as the obvious, ongoing issues around facilities and amenities.

Newly elected member Nick Chater said he had spent Saturday working as crew on an event so it was a "nice surprise" to get back and discover his successful election.

Mr Chater, who has lived in Rotorua all of his life and now called Okere Falls home, said he loved Rotorua and was proud to be able to represent his community.

"I want to be involved in my community. It is such an amazing place."

The other successful candidate, Fred Stevens, could not be reached for comment yesterday.

- Rotorua Daily Post

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