Doubling of population growth shows need for new leadership

Published: Mon 23 Sep 2019 02:51 PM
23 September 2019
Doubling of population growth shows need for fresh leadership focussed on results
Kāpiti Coast mayoral candidate Gwynn Compton says data from Census 2018 released today, showing the average rate of population growth in Kāpiti has more than doubled, reinforces the need for fresh leadership with a focus on delivering results, rather than more reports, summits, and task forces.
Census 2018 shows that average population growth on the Kāpiti Coast has more than doubled, increasing to 1.9 percent per year since 2013, compared to just 0.8 percent on average per year between the 2006 and 2013 censuses.
“Since launching my campaign back in January, I’ve been speaking about the need to get on top of growth and manage it smartly so that it works for Kāpiti, rather than sitting idly and letting growth undermine our communities as is currently happening,” says Mr Compton.
“Unfortunately, our current Council is still yet to take meaningful action on the big issues facing the Kāpiti Coast. For example, they’ve sat on the recommendations from the Kāpiti Coast Communities Housing Taskforce for over two years, and are now revisiting it with another report by a new consultant. Likewise, the refresh of the district’s economic development strategy is long overdue and continues to be delayed, incurring additional costs and creating more missed opportunities for our communities.
“As Mayor, I’ll stop the endless talkfest at Council and get it focused on delivering real results for the people of Kāpiti. We can’t afford to persist with a Council that’s been caught twiddling its thumbs while thousands more people move to Kāpiti, especially when that growth will only accelerate once Transmission Gully opens.”
Since 2013, an extra 4,569 people are now living on the Kāpiti Coast, with high growth areas including eastern Raumati, northern Paraparaumu, central Waikanae, Peka Peka, Te Horo, and both Ōtaki and Ōtaki Beach.
“Before even a single car has driven the length of Transmission Gully, we’re seeing a population explosion on the Kāpiti Coast that carries on right through into southern Horowhenua. With our schools already at or over capacity, limited after hours and no accident and emergency medical services, and transport infrastructure bursting at the seams, this growth boom underscores the need for the government to urgently fund the vital infrastructure and essential services our growing region needs,” says Mr Compton.
“I’m unapologetically ambitious for Kāpiti and, as Mayor, I’ll fight relentlessly to get the government to step up and play their part in supporting our communities.
“If the government can find nearly $80 million for a train between Hamilton and Auckland that will carry fewer passengers than extending commuter rail to Ōtaki was projected to back in 2013, then they can find the money to invest in our transport infrastructure - like electrifying and double tracking the rail network to Ōtaki and beyond - and completing the roading projects our district badly needs.
“They can also find the money for our schools, they can find the money for our healthcare services, and they can find the money to help Kāpiti mitigate and adapt to climate change. We can’t continue to accept the status quo of fighting over the scraps left by other regions, as has been the case so far this Council term.”

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