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News in brief February 20, 2023

Roads open

Most Wairarapa roads have now re-opened after Cyclone Gabrielle. Carterton District Council said all of its roads were open as of yesterday afternoon but still urged residents to avoid unnecessary travel to coastal areas. South Wairarapa District Council’s most recent update said Te Rata Rd, Cape River Rd, and Pahaoa Rd were closed for various roadworks during the weekend. Masterton District Council said Masterton-Castlepoint Rd and Blairlogie-Langdale Rd were now open, but only to residents, essential services, and emergency vehicles.

Transfer fees rise

Carterton’s elected members have resolved to increase transfer station fees from March 1 so they are in line with Masterton’s. The new fees will be $246 plus GST per tonne; $29 per car boot of SUV; $68.20 per small trailer, van, or ute, and $89.50 per large trailer. The increased fees will cover the rising costs of landfill due to the recently introduced waste disposal levy and the emissions trading scheme. Carterton’s fees had previously been significantly lower than Masterton’s. – NZLDR

Inform only

Carterton councillors have unanimously voted for an “inform only” approach to this year’s Annual Plan, rather than formal consultation. Under the Local Government Act, councils are only required to consult on their Annual Plan if significant changes are planned between the Annual Plan and the corresponding year of the Long-Term Plan [LTP]. The report to Carterton District Council said there were no significant variations from the already adopted LTP. A draft annual plan will be developed and ready by late April. – NZLDR

Hill crashes

Emergency services responded to two separate single-vehicle crashes on Remutaka Hill Rd last week. The crashes were reported just north of the summit, with the vehicles colliding with the bank and barrier. Wellington Free Ambulance confirmed one patient in the second crash was treated at the scene but did not require transportation. Police said Waka Kotahi NZTA had been advised of a diesel spill on the road. Wairarapa commuters reported a large diesel spill on the road that was creating dangerous driving conditions. Featherston Fire Brigade, which responded to the crashes, could not comment on whether diesel spill was a contributing factor.

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