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  • Andrew von Dadelszen

Back on the Regional Council, and our bus service will be targeted

Many thanks to those who showed confidence in me by electing me back onto the Regional Council. It never ceases to amaze me that many sitting Councillors (Tauranga City and Mayoral candidates in particular) didn’t seem to know what the role of a local government councillor entails.

We are all bound by the Local Government Act 2002 (and its amendments), and Section 11A state:

Core services to be considered in performing role -

In performing its role, a local authority must have particular regard to the contribution that the following core services make to its communities:

(a) network infrastructure:

(b) public transport services:

(c) solid waste collection and disposal:

(d) the avoidance or mitigation of natural hazards:

(e) libraries, museums, reserves, and other recreational facilities and community amenities.

Ratepayers should not be paying for the likes of “Social Housing” (this is the responsibility of Central Government), but they should be paying for (e) libraries, museums, reserves, and other recreational facilities and community amenities.

And what is more they should be paying for public transport services. Our Bus Service in Tauranga is disgraceful, and I can assure you that I will be holding both our staff (Regional Council), and Tauranga City staff, to account over this. For the past three years our patronage figures have been dropping (20%), and this is ridiculous, considering the growth that our city enjoys.

Commuters won’t take public transport (our buses) because they can rely on neither, when the bus will turn up, nor when they will get to their destination. The bus service is the responsibility of the Regional Council, and we need to change both the routes, and the fare structure. Neither is working. Tauranga City is responsible for the bus stops (shelters and timetable displays), and this includes the downtown depot on Willow Street. This depot (if you could call it that) is a disgrace, and just a “hangout” for all sorts of undesirables. This has to change – and we need “real-time” information at bus stops. With modern technology this isn’t rocket science (and commuters shouldn’t have to pay 20 cents to text for the information). There is currently no route information, nor timetables, at the bus stops. How do you expect to grow the service when the “service” is non-existent!

There is lots to do, but I am here to serve you (the ratepayers), so look for ACTION not words.

If you have a view on these or any other local government issues, I invite you to email me.

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