Thursday, June 13, 2024

Govt tips in $15m for council rubbish removal

The Government has announced it will provide $15 million to local councils to remove residential rubbish in the wake of Cyclone Gabrielle.

Minister for Emergency Management, Kieran McAnulty said several regions were facing significant costs associated with residential waste removal, which had the potential to become a public health and environmental risk.

“We’ve heard from some councils that they don’t have the financial capacity to deal with the issue so it’s important we support them to ensure funding money isn’t a barrier to clean up,” Mr McAnulty said.

The additional funding will go towards the urgent collection, removal, and disposal of solid waste caused by Cyclone Gabrielle from residential properties, he said.

“We’re contributing short term funding of $15 million to assist local authorities to remove and dispose of residential solid waste between 13 February 2023 to 30 June 2023 while a longer term approach to waste management is being developed.”

The intention is for the approach to be locally-led as local authorities are best placed to determine which properties are classified as residential, the Minister said.

“In many areas, particularly in Hawke’s Bay and Tairāwhiti, the next steps of recovery cannot begin until rubbish is properly disposed of.”

“This funding will be a welcome relief to those communities that are heading towards recovery. It’s been a hard time after the impacts of the Cyclone but communities have rallied together and supported each other through the worst of it.

“Local Councils are having to face unprecedented damage from the Cyclone, I am glad we are able to get funds to them that enable them to help their communities as fast as possible,” Mr McAnulty said.

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