Draft budget feedback pretty good: council

The Dunedin City Council says feedback on its draft budget has been ''pretty good'' despite some disappointing turnouts at public meetings in recent weeks.

The council concluded a series of eight public meetings and drop-in sessions with a discussion of cycleway and road-widening work on Otago Peninsula at the Edgar Centre on Tuesday night.

Just five people turned out, meaning they were outnumbered by council staff, which was ''really disappointing'', council corporate planner Jane Nevill said.

The same poor turnout was evident at some of the other meetings, including a drop-in session held at the South Dunedin Warehouse store on March 26, which attracted just 12 people, she said.

However, turnouts had been much better in outlying parts of the city that had particularly topical issues to discuss, she said.

That included 72 people who attended a similar drop-in session in Port Chalmers, where the community wanted action on improving State Highway 88 safety and the completion of the State Highway 88 cycleway, Ms Nevill said.

Another 42 people came to a public meeting in Portobello on March 31, called to discuss the peninsula cycleway work, while 74 attended a public meeting in Mosgiel on April 3 to discuss the need for a new swimming pool.

In addition, public submissions on the council's 2014-15 draft annual plan were ''flooding in now'' and had reached 427 by late yesterday, she said.

That was well above the 262 submissions received by the council on its 2013-14 draft budget.

Cycleway work on Portobello Rd and Harington Point Rd was the most popular topic this year, having been mentioned in 292 submissions, council figures showed.

It was followed by submissions on a new Waipori Fund ethical investment strategy (107 submissions), heritage incentives (98), the Maia to Port Chalmers cycleway (54) and the proposed Mosgiel Pool (30).

Members of the public have until 5pm on Tuesday to make a submission on the draft budget.

- chris.morris@odt.co.nz

2014-15 draft annual plan

1. Portobello Rd-Harington Point Rd cycleway/road widening (292 submissions)
2. Waipori Fund ethical investment strategy (107)
3. Heritage incentives (98)4. Maia to Port Chalmers cycleway (54)
5. Aquatic facilities - Mosgiel Pool (30)

72 people - Port Chalmers (New World), March 18
14 people - South Dunedin (The Warehouse), March 26
42 people - Portobello (Coronation Hall), March 31
12 people - Dunedin (Central City Library), April 1
74 people - Mosgiel (Coronation Hall), April 3
56 people - Blueskin Bay (A&P showgrounds), April 6
20 people - Dunedin (Dunedin Public Art Gallery) April 7
5 people - Dunedin (Edgar Centre), April 8


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