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Council sets new strategic priorities focused on driving affordable change

24 Apr 2023, 1:08 PM

Kāpiti Coast District councillors have adopted 10 strategic priorities for the triennium and agreed to progress work to develop a new community vision to 2060 and beyond, and an accompanying blueprint for change.

The new strategic priorities reflect what our community has raised with councillors as important issues to be addressed. They will focus effort across the triennium to 2025/26 and be accompanied by a suite of annual actions that ensure change is implemented.

Chair of the Strategy, Operations and Finance Committee, Councillor Sophie Handford said “This Council is focussed on making sure we deliver on the things that matter most to our community, so that we are enabling sustainable development that improves social, economic, cultural, and environmental outcomes for current and future generations, while at the same time, ensuring Council’s operational activity is aligned with the needs of the Kāpiti Coast people and environment.

“Through the Council’s Residents' Opinion Survey we’ve heard loud and clear that our community wants to be more closely involved in Council decisions around where our district is heading and we are committed to working alongside our Iwi partners and community boards to provide more opportunities for this to happen.”

Councillor Handford says that “we recognise the need for change to remain relevant to our community. For us this means having conversations grounded in values, and on what matters most, so our mahi is focussed and has maximum positive impact.”

The ten short-term strategic priorities we’ve adopted for the triennium will aim to ensure the Council remains focussed on driving strategic change and will help inform the approach to working alongside Iwi partners and community boards to discover what they want their future Kāpiti to be like in 2060 and beyond.

The Council’s ten strategic priorities are grouped under three key areas of focus – place, people, and partnerships.

Priorities related to ‘place’ focus on making sure Kāpiti is resilient and liveable for current and future generations. For 2023/24, actions include introducing an emissions reduction target by June 2023, improving transport network, reducing inland flooding issues, and delivering Council’s stormwater infrastructure programme.

Priorities related to ‘people’ focus on ensuring people are supported to live, work, and play in our district. For 2023/24, actions include increasing economic opportunities to work in Kāpiti, building stronger community connection points, progressing mahi to establish an Affordable Housing Entity, and setting a health strategy.

Priorities related to ‘partnerships’ focus on partnering more effectively with Iwi partners and others to connect, facilitate, and advocate for the benefit of everyone that calls Kāpiti home. For 2023/24, actions include working with the community to develop a shared vision for Kāpiti, improving accountability, and improving engagement practices.

Deputy Chair of the Strategy, Operations and Finance Committee, Councillor Liz Koh says the Council wants to ensure it acts on the things that matter most to the community.

“Ultimately, we want our services to support you, and our businesses, community, and environment to thrive no matter what comes our way.

“We know we need to do better, starting with how we update and inform our community about what we are doing and why.

“We know we have some work to do but we are 100 percent committed to holding ourselves to account and being more upfront about some of the things we are grappling with as a Council,” said Councillor Koh.

“We genuinely want to hear what our community thinks, and this starts with inviting feedback on our short-term strategic priorities.”   

Deputy Mayor Lawrence Kirby says that by and large the ten short-term strategic priorities reflect what councillors came to the table with at the start of the triennium.

“Ultimately as governors we want to ensure Council’s activities, services and facilities support our businesses, community, and environment to thrive as we continue to grow as a district and face global, national and local challenges such as climate change, sea-level rise and economic recessions.

“To do this well, it’s important to us that we work with the community, not against it, and you can expect to see councillors working alongside our Iwi partners and community boards to provide a lot more informal opportunities for people to have their say.”

Council’s strategic priorities can be viewed on the Council’s website under the 6 April Strategy, Operations and Finance Committee Meeting agenda and will be made more accessible to the community shortly.

Mayor Janet Holborow said she was incredibly proud of the new Council’s mahi to land their ten short-term strategic priorities for the triennium.

“I’m excited by what lies ahead and I really encourage everyone in our community to get involved in our conversations to help shape a new community vision and blueprint for our future that we can all be proud of; this includes telling us if our list of short-term priorities reflects what matters most to Kāpiti residents.”