It’s only six more sleeps until Christmas, the trees are up, the lights are on, the presents are wrapped - all that’s missing is a break in the weather!
There are a few things on my wish list this Christmas, so instead of writing a letter to Santa (as tempting as that is) I thought I’d write a letter to our district instead.
First on my Christmas list is the development of a Three Waters solution that respects our district’s continual investment in infrastructure, understands our need for local service and maintenance, and protects our people and place.
This is a contentious issue, and one our council has taken a strong stand on from the outset. Over many years, our residents have paid towards fit-for-purpose water infrastructure for our district, and while we will support the development of a viable solution that works for us all, we will continue to protect and uphold the rights of our community.
Second on my Christmas wish list is better roading connections for our region. We need more communication, understanding and support from central Government, and most of all, more funding! What a difference it would make to have more investment and support for us in developing lasting road connections for generations to come. Maybe even a four-lane highway? Let’s add it to the list!
Last on my list is the wish for our summer season to run smoothly. After a restrictive couple of years, we’re expecting an influx of visitors to our district. This is great news for our hospitality and tourism sectors; however, it can lead to chaos on our roads and particularly at our beaches.
From December 16 to February 6, the most popular freedom camping sites will be patrolled by a team of friendly Freedom Camping Ambassadors. Our ambassadors are local, knowledgeable, and keen to help. They’ll be explaining the three-night rule (staying for three nights is fine, but then you need to move on), offering alternative location ideas, and even presenting a range of nearby conservation projects as a way for campers to give back to the community.
During the summer period, we ask for dogs and horses to stay off most beaches during peak daylight hours of 9am-5pm, we support a Summer Safe Carpark programme to deter car theft and break-ins, and we promote the “no bins, better beaches” philosophy of taking your rubbish home with you. You can find a full list of council’s “essential summer info” on our website.
My final wish is for everyone to have a safe and festive holiday break, enjoy spending time with your loved ones, and make the most of our beautiful district.
Buon Natale a tutti voi – Merry Christmas to you all.