June 07, 2023
Funding scheme puts Wairoa flood repairs in limbo
Whanau in Wairoa are still in limbo despite the release of a framework for dealing with for cyclone impacted properties.
The Government will help councils offer buy-outs to homeowners of category 3 properties where the future risk is considered too great to fix or rebuild houses, and it will work with councils to build flood protection and other resilience measures in category 2 areas where risks can be managed.
Leon Symes, the chair of post-settlement governance body Tatau Tatau o Te Wairoa, says while no Wairoa properties have so far been red-zoned, the bureaucracy seems to be moving slowly.
He says teams are clearing away the silt, but there are about 100 homes where they are ready to start repairs.
“We estimate it to be $130,000 to repair on average across all these houses so we are looking initially at a $10 million injection required. This categorisation puts us in limbo. We don’t know whethee to start the repair work or wait for the 2a assessment to be completed. We’re trying to get whanau back into homes and then we’re got bureaucracy here holding things up again,” he says.
Mr Symes says there is a lot of matauranga Maori which can help develop flood protection measures, and central and local government need to talk more to communities.