Rangitikei mayor Andy Watson says his council is working hard and does not deserve to be ignored by Government.

Some council projects were being held back by lack of communication and help from various ministries.

Mr Watson aired his frustration to councillors this week and said he was running out of options in two areas - landlocked land and the funding of youth services.

The future of the Marton Youth Club and the Youth Hutt in Taihape remains up in the air with expected Government assistance not yet coming and council having not heard anything from the ministry.


The council had "worked its butt off" but had come up against a brick wall, Mr Watson said.

"It's been frustrating to see other councils offered what we have requested for some time.

"I repeatedly have to go back to council to say help is on its way," he said. "But I'm sounding like a broken record."

On Monday the council had to vote for a third extension as the sole funder of youth services in Rangitikei after no word from Government on what assistance it could offer.

"This has gone on for the best part of two years and I'm running out of avenues."

Mr Watson felt Rangitikei was often forgotten, wedged between Whanganui and Palmerston North, where it was wrongly thought services from those districts covered Rangitikei.

Unlocking Maori-owned landlocked land for production was another area Mr Watson said he had not been able to engage with Government over.

"Council has dealt with this issue for years and years by ignoring it, but this council has taken some brave moves to say we intended to try and work with both parties. The iwi and those landowners that could be potentially blocking access," he said. "Ironically one of the major parties blocking access is the Crown."

He said Government has introduced policy and law around the rating of landlocked land without consultation and despite Mr Watson's own requests to be involved in the process.

"My frustration is we've been trying to engage with them but that hasn't happened," he said. "It seems to be engagement after the fact."

Mr Watson said there were a number of positive signs for the district.

"I think the potential for us to get significant gains with employment and industry is there," he said. "We're currently working on some deals, some of which are already happening and some of which I'm pretty sure will go ahead."

He said Rangitikei District Council had cooperated with Government on surveys, submissions, audits "but when a couple of things that we have asked for help with, because of urgent need, our voice seems to have fallen on deaf ears".

"We don't deserve this. We want to move forward, but it's a battle."