Time is ticking to have your say on the Stratford Long Term Plan

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Water, waste, economic development and housing are the key themes up for debate in Stratford District Council’s Long Term Plan (LTP) 2021-2031 and people now have less than a week to share their views on Council’s options going forward.

At last week’s public meeting there was a good discussion on water conservation and Council’s preferred option of implementing water metering. District Mayor, Neil Volzke says, “Access to clean drinking water is vital and the rivers we take our water supply from need to be looked after. We should not waste this resource.”

“There are a number of benefits in water metering”, says Mayor Volzke. “A user pays system will improve awareness of water use and incentivise people to conserve water.”

“Being able to identify water losses on properties and helping us stay within the capacity of our treatment plants are additional, valuable benefits,” he says. 

Alongside water, the amount of waste Stratford households are sending to landfill each year has been troubling Councillors. “Compared to some districts, we’re outrageously poor at the amount of rubbish we send to landfill,” says Mayor Volzke.

That’s why they’re proposing to introduce an additional solid waste collection, for green and food waste, which would be collected fortnightly in a 240 litre bin. “Combined with recycling, a food and green waste collection would give us the opportunity of diverting over half of our overall waste from landfill - that would be a massive improvement!” says Mayor Volzke.

The proposed economic development targeted rate sparked some good debate among attendees at the public meeting on Thursday night. If the targeted rate for commercial properties was to go ahead, one of the questions raised was whether the map for the rate identified the right area or whether a map should exist at all and instead have the rate apply to all commercial properties in the Stratford district? Council is interested to hear your thoughts on this as part of your submissions.

On the theme of investing in the district’s economic growth, the last key issue Council is seeking feedback on is whether or not to do an additional residential subdivision. While Council hasn’t identified any land for this yet, they want to know in principle whether the community would support them in pursuing another opportunity either on its own or in collaboration with a commercial partner.

These four key issues aren’t the only topics people can have their say on. Submissions can be made on anything included in the consultation document and supporting information, including the infrastructure strategy, financial strategy, draft policies and more.

Mayor Volzke says, “I encourage everyone in our district to take hold of this opportunity to share your views on the 10 year plan. We want to ensure the future of Stratford reflects the aspirations and needs of our community members and without your submissions we won’t know.”

“We’re listening. Put your submissions in so your view will be heard,” he says.

Locals have one more opportunity to attend a public meeting on the LTP, being held at Whakaahurangi Marae tonight, Tuesday 27 April at 7pm.

Read the full Consultation Document and supporting information on Council’s website stratford.govt.nz, at Council’s Service Centre on Miranda Street, or at the Library and i-SITE in Prospero Place. Submissions on the LTP are open until Sunday 2 May 2021.