Siting decision dumped back on to board members

In 2022 newly elected Mataura Community Board member Laurel Turnbull said a plaque recording...
In 2022 newly elected Mataura Community Board member Laurel Turnbull said a plaque recording where a time capsule is buried, not far from where the new dump station is sited, is one of many reasons why the station should not be placed where it is. PHOTO: THE ENSIGN FILES
Mataura Community Board members will decide how to end the 16-month saga of what should happen to the dump station installed at Coster Park.

At last week’s Gore District Council meeting, councillors declined to make a decision regarding the station and deferred the matter back to the board.

In November 2022, the newly elected board protested the siting of the station which was 80% installed because they did not think it was an appropriate place for the station given there was a picnic table nearby and a time capsule buried not far away.

The project had been recommended by the former board in August 2022 and ratified by councillors not long after.

Once the New Zealand Motor Caravan Association agreed to fund the station, council staff went ahead with installing it.

At Tuesday’s meeting, councillors considered a report by council senior facilities officer Neil Mair.

In the report, Mr Mair said council roading asset manager Murray Hasler presented a memo to the new board on December 12, 2022, outlining how the previous board wanted the project completed.

In response, the board requested Mr Hasler find out what it would cost to move the station 10 metres north.

At the next meeting in January 2023, Mr Hasler presented a memo advising it would cost $4607 plus GST to move the station.

He said moving the time capsule would be a cheaper option at $750 plus GST.

Tulloch Park has since been mooted as a possible site for a dump station.

Mr Mair concluded his report by recommending the station be made operational and signage go up as soon as possible.

During the discussion, councillor Neville Phillips said the situation arose because the new board did not agree with a decision made by the previous board.

"The current board stopped the process which I’m not sure how that happened."

Councillor Keith Hovell said it was up to the community board, not council, to decide where the station was located.

"I don’t think that is something we should interfere with."

The council should only be involved if a project needed funding but given the state of the council’s finances, the community board would need to fund the shifting of the dump station, Cr Hovell said.

Councillor Andy Fraser agreed with Cr Hovell.

Councillor Robert McKenzie asked if Tulloch Park was a possible location for the station.

Councillor Bronwyn Reid said she did not think a recreational area was a suitable place.

"You’re going to have campervans coming in and cleaning out.

"It’s not a good look."

Coster Park was more suitable, she said.

Mr Mair said the consent process for the Tulloch Park stage two redevelopment could be held up if a dump station was added to the project.