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Keep Motueka Beautiful loses leader but still makes progress

March 23rd, 2011
[by David Armstrong]

Despite finding itself without an elected leader, Keep Motueka Beautiful (KMB) continues to rack up achievement points with several of its beautification projects making excellent progress.

Eileen Wilkins, who has chaired the influential and busy community group for five years, stepped down at the February committee meeting, and attempts to find a willing replacement at the March meeting on Monday were in vain, with no-one accepting nomination for either chairman or deputy chairman roles.

Committee member and representative of the Community Board, David Ogilvie agreed to chair this week's meeting and perhaps, if necessary, meetings through to the AGM in August.

Eileen said that her role on the KMB committee as chairman and also representing the Tasman District Council sometimes placed her in a difficult position with divided loyalties, and this caused some conflict. She said she had taken on chairmanship with the aim of opening up better communication between KMB and TDC but now it was time to step back.

Also potentially to suffer from this change is the Litter Cart operation, which Eileen had managed for some time but which she no longer wished to run. The litter cart ceased to operate late last year due to lack of sponsorship, and it's revival would need new funding. Eileen said she had been in discussions with a handful of local businesses and received promises for partial funding totalling $4,800 which would be enough to pay wages for the cart for seven months starting in October this year. Again, no other committee members put up their hand to take over its management, so the issue was deferred until the next meeting.

Other projects, however, were producing promising results. Bob Cooke reported "favourable progress at last" on planning for the construction of the Wharf Road walkway, with TDC engineers coming up with "a commonsense resource consent" application document that should lead to construction beginning in May this year if approved.

Bob was also particularly (and justifiably) pleased with further progress with the Adopt-a-Plot area of the Inlet Reserve. A new sign was shown which will be installed at the Reserve using a recent aerial photo to show where the numbered plots are. Only one plot remains to be adopted, and Plot 34, which was agreed to be an open grassed area, is now seeded and looking good.

Also well received was news that planning work is proceeding with the Link Park / York Park walkway, the path which will complete the Inlet walkway circuit. A survey of the area and of adjacent Trewavas Street residents showed where the path would be formed, including a boardwalk for part of it. It was noted that some properties actually encroach on the route.

Funding the project remains an issue, but Peter Talley had told Bob Cooke that he would provide significant funds to ensure it goes ahead, subject to final plans and budgeting details, and consultation with iwi, Council and other parties.

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