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Motutere Holiday Park negotiating new lease with Taupo District Council

The leaseholder of the Motutere Holiday Park has been given the go-ahead to negotiate a new lease with Taupō District Council.

However, any new lease will not be confirmed until the Motutere Reserve Management Plan review is complete and negotiations will take place without prejudice.

In Tuesday’s council meeting, councillors decided to allow the lease negotiation process to run alongside the reserve management plan review, with any decision on granting a new lease to be made once the reserve management plan is adopted.

Policy manager Nick Carroll said Taupō District Council leases a portion of the Motutere Recreation Reserve to the Motutere Holiday Park. The current lease expires on 1 March 2038.

“Council has received a request from the lessee for an extended lease term,” he said.

“A longer lease term could be negotiated via a new lease, which would replace the current one.

“The Motutere Reserve Management Plan 2004 is being reviewed, in partnership with Ngāti Te Rangiita. This sets the direction for the management and future development of the reserve, among other things. Ideally, this process should be completed before a new lease is proposed. However, there is an option to run the two processes in parallel to speed up the granting of a new lease.”

The decision to run the two processes at the same time was seen as the most efficient solution. It allows alignment of the lease with the revised reserve management plan and avoids risks of predetermination. It also avoids having two separate consultation processes which could confuse the community.

However, councillors also voted to include the words “on a without prejudice basis” to the decision. During the meeting, they expressed concerns that running the processes at the same time could make the final decisions appear predetermined.

Councillor Rachel Shepherd said she was wary of “leading stakeholders down the garden path and suggesting there won’t be changes, when there very well could be”.

“I’d like to make it very clear that this is on a without-prejudice basis and at the end of this process there might be some changes.”

Councillor Sandra Greenslade, who is on the Motutere Recreation Reserve Management Plan Committee, said there was no crossover between that committee and lease negotiations.

“This can be a cost-saving exercise now by running these processes in tandem and I don’t believe it would inhibit the current process. I think that for the people of the district and visitors who use this facility, the certainty for both in tandem is positive for all of us.”

Moving forward, feedback from the first round of consultation on the Motutere Reserve Management Plan, held in December and January, is helping inform a revised draft plan. The second round of consultation, in mid-2024, will invite feedback on that plan.

 

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