Gigatown boost

More money is being pumped into the Gigatown project by the Waitaki District Council in a bid to win a prize which would make Oamaru the area with the fastest broadband connection in the southern hemisphere.

The council has added $10,000 this financial year and provided another $20,000 in the 2014-15 draft annual plan, despite some concerns about providing money for a commercial competition being run by Chorus to encourage uptake of ultrafast broadband.

Oamaru is second in the competition behind Wanaka. Waitaki Mayor Gary Kircher, who is also chairman of the Oamaru Gigatown organising committee, said it would be a major economic boost for the district. However, deputy mayor Hugh Perkins said it was a ''commercial competition'' and felt money was being provided with little accountability.

Funding was approved by most councillors.

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