Auckland Council says it will begin reaching out to storm-affected homeowners about their initial risk categorisation, following an announcement by the Government today that it will support councils in funding a voluntary buyout of flood-damaged homes.
Mayor, Wayne Brown says the announcement was a step forward and allows the Council to start engaging with homeowners. But, he says, further work is needed before the council can provide needed certainty for affected property owners.
“It’s good to see the Government making some progress in this area, and the council now needs to look into the Government’s proposal and assess what it means for Auckland and Aucklanders,” the Mayor said.
“The scale of weather impacts experienced in Auckland this year is huge and so is the work we have ahead of us to build a more resilient region. We are balancing the need to provide people with certainty as soon as possible, with the need to get this right and be careful about scarce ratepayer resources.
“Our work continues on the Making Space for Water programme that I announced a few weeks ago, and we are looking to start talking with priority locations soon. We will be engaging closely with those communities about ways to reduce flooding risks,” he said.
Deputy Mayor, Desley Simpson says the council will use the Government’s framework and progress the assessments.
“Staff from our Recovery Office and other teams around council been working as fast as possible to apply the Government’s risk categories to individual properties in Auckland, since their risk framework was announced on 1 May,” she said.
“We understand the need to give affected property owners as much certainty as possible, as quickly as possible.”
“From 12 June, we will begin to contact property owners who have been identified through modelling as being potential high risk. The letter will explain that their property may be high-risk and needs further assessment.
“In the communication with this group of property owners, we will be asking them to provide us with more information about their property so we can accelerate risk assessments for them. We hope this approach will help get us to a decision about individual homes quicker.
“This is a complex situation with some difficult decisions ahead, so we need to make sure we get this right both for us as a council and for those affected.
“We appreciate that this has been a stressful time for storm-affected property owners, and we look forward to working to achieve certainty over the coming months”, the Deputy Mayor said.