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Flood recovery in far north highlights plight of small communities

Community leaders are appealing to the Government to come to the rescue, and help fix deteriorating infrastructure in the north of the country. 

The Far North District Council is assessing the extent of the deficit in its infrastructure budget to fix severely storm-damaged roads and neglected sewerage system. 

Rawene Area Residents Association chairman Robin Hoare says there must be a greater Government subsidy to council’s road building.

“There’s no alternative. If we want roads which are able to put up with the timber traffic and freight and especially tourists, because many people see the salvation of the Far North as tourism.”

Severely storm-damaged roads, neglected sewerage systems and repair work to council buildings are some of the costs the council needs to find money for.

NZIER principal economist Shamubeel Eaqub says sufficient rates income is not there for some of these small communities to fund large infrastructure like roads.

“This is where some of that very courageous conversation has to take place on how much of these infrastructure can we manage for some of these small communities.”

– Newstalk ZB


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