WDC ceo takes pay cut

The Waikato District Council chief executive Gavin Ion has taken a 20% pay cut for the next six months.

Ion made the decision within hours of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s announcement today that she and other government ministers, as well as central government ministry and department chief executives, will take a 20% pay cut for the next six months amid the coronavirus pandemic.

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Waikato facilities close

Waikato District Council community facilities will be closed from Monday, March 23 as a precaution to slow the spread of COVID-19.

The Government has put limits on the number of people who can gather in a space and is urging the practice of ‘physical distancing’– maintaining a space of two metres between people.

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Waikato growing fast

Waikato, one of the country’s fastest growing districts, is forecast to jump from its current 29,000 households and 77,000 people to around 41,000 households and 102,000 people by 2040.

The Waikato District Council is preparing for a long period of growth and change and has been working hard on major initiatives in the past year that will be crucial to creating liveable communities for the future, it says.

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Cheap deal not on the books

The Waikato District Council wanted a cheaper deal for access to Hamilton city libraries, a move that axed the long running deal and caused an outcry.

District Council chief executive Gavin Ion told Tamahere Forum the Hamilton City Council didn’t agree with the proposed fee cut “so the negotiations ended unsuccessfully.”

But one city councillor maintains the district has ditched a good deal which was being subsidised by the city.

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Size matters – for books but not votes

Size matters, according to Waikato District Council chief executive Gavin Ion.

One of the reasons for controversially ending the council’s contract paying for district residents’ access to the Hamilton city libraries “is that it only benefits a small percentage of our residents,” he said in a statement today.

What percentage is too small to warrant the expense of allowing Waikato residents who are miles from a district library the ability to use one on their doorstep? He doesn’t say.

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Delays reduce council debt

Waikato District Council’s audited Annual Report for 2014/15 was adopted at a full council meeting on Monday.

The Council’s ‘scorecard’ to its community shows the organisation progressed on key projects set out in the Annual Plan and achieved lower than expected debt, the council said in a statement.

Highlights of the report included:

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Get savvy, council urged

Tamahere Community Committee chairman Dallas Fisher has urged the Waikato District Council to be “commercially savvy” about the controversial Hart Rd homes being built by Chinese developer LV Park.

Hart Rd residents have raised concerns that eight massive houses being built on their road were intended to be used as hostel-type housing for Chinese students.

At its May meeting, the committee heard that the Hart Rd neighborhood group believed issues, including a potential overload of traffic, sewer and stormwater systems should be fully investigated rather than ignored by the council.

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