Waikato district to grow

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The Local Government Commission has confirmed the Waikato district will increase by about 14,500 residents and include the towns of Tuakau, Pokeno and Mercer as part of Auckland’s super-city boundary changes.

On November 1, the Waikato District will expand geographically to incorporate 100,000 hectares of land and 6800 properties in the Franklin district.

Waikato Mayor Peter Harris was particularly pleased with the commission’s decision to allow his council to establish an office in Tuakau.

“We believe this will best accommodate our citizens,” he told the Waikato Times.

“The Tuakau office will offer a range of services, and operate in a similar way to our Huntly and Raglan offices.”

The commission also accepted the council’s proposed new ward structure, which will see the Waikato District divided into 11 wards represented by one mayor and 14 elected councillors.

Three new wards have been created to incorporate the portion of Franklin that is now in the Waikato District – Awaroa ki Tuakau, Onewhero and Whangamarino.

The commission also agreed to retain the Onewhero-Tuakau community board and increase the number of board members from four to six.

“Council is pleased with this outcome as it will ensure the interests of our new communities are represented,” Mr Harris said.

Rates rise
Waikato District Council is planning to increase its rates by 2.96 per cent, to $184.62 per $100,000 of capital value, while its uniform annual general charge increases from $450 to $463, under work programmed in its draft annual plan.

The draft annual plan’s consultation period runs from March 22-April 23, with submission hearings starting on May 17.

Subdivision approved

Waikato District Council’s hearings committee has approved an application to establish a two-lot subdivision on the corner of Devine and Koppens Rds in Tamahere, despite strenuous objections from the Icepak Group.

The application was opposed by Icepak director Wayne Grattan who objected to dwellings being within 100 metres of the Tamahere commercial area.

He was worried about possible effects on the future use of the Icepak site, and said future commercial use should be protected.

But the hearings committee said the proposal was in keeping with the country living zone subdivisions, and considered a 60m setback for new dwellings was sufficient.

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