A new regional development agency is to be established in Hawke’s Bay with the support of five councils, and business and Maori leadership interests.
The partnership was announced on Friday, and is expected to run from the start of July with a joint annual investment of $1.7 million, and follows a review of local government investment in business and industry support across Hawke’s Bay.
Economic development consultant Gus Charteris’s review highlighted a range of inefficiencies with the current system and a clear opportunity to do better to meet the region’s needs and potential.
The entity, of which the Hawke’s Bay Regional, Napier City and Wairoa, Hastings and Central Hawke’s Bay district councils will all be a part, will support growth and productivity across the regional economy.
Regional Council chairman Rick Barker said the region needs to create a strong economic development voice.
“The case for change is compelling,” he said. “We need to work in a more unified way with local businesses and with our treaty partners and this is the best structure to achieve a dynamic entity for the progress of Hawke’s Bay.”
Mayors agreed, with Hastings’ Sandra Hazlehurst saying she is delighted with the decision by the five councils.
First published by Hawke’s Bay Today. Click here to read the full article.