Our role as a local authority
Our main role as a local authority is to maintain essential services and complement central government’s relief and stimulus initiatives where we can, including helping people and businesses access the support Government is providing.
Central government takes the lead role in managing public health, in providing income and business support to New Zealanders affected, and in driving economic recovery.
During an event like a pandemic, Civil Defence has a role in ensuring all responding agencies are connected. In the Wellington region this is led by the Wellington Region Emergency Management Office (WREMO), with six Emergency Operations Centres (EOCs) staffed and run by the relevant councils (Kāpiti Coast, Upper Hutt, Lower Hutt, Porirua, Wellington). EOCs worked together under a regional framework to ensure response efforts were coordinated.
Planning for recovery
This is also the case in planning for our recovery. A regional approach allows for opportunities to share information and resources.
Recovery planning for Kāpiti is driven locally, as recovery looks different for each district, and we continue to coordinate regionally. Council has a dedicated recovery team working across our district to understand the local impacts of COVID-19 and the needs of our community, and develop a plan to support recovery. We will bring in external expertise and support as needed.
Council played an important role in the initial response to the COVID-19 emergency. Our Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) was activated on 23 March 2020 to help Kāpiti locals and ensure those residents most in need had access to food, clothing, and other essential items to keep them healthy, safe and warm. We were able to make sure nearly 200 people got essential supplies during Alert Levels 4 and 3. Lots of preparation work was also done by the EOC in case the pandemic got much worse locally.
The EOC was formally stood down on 22 May 2020, marking our transition from emergency response to recovery.