Mar 2020 – Update on Council’s response to Covid-19

Update from Your Local Wellington City Councillor –Diane Calvert

Wharangi Onslow-Western Ward/ Economic Development Portfolio Leader

I hope you and your families have settled into this unprecedented situation of a nationwide lock-down as well as can be expected. It’s been a steep adjustment curve for everyone including me and my family. I recommend ZOOM for getting together with multiple people online. I’ve used it for meetings, family catch ups and with friends at ‘wine time’.

Thank You

First up, a big thanks to our Council team and all those other essential workers who remain out there on the frontline helping to keep us all safe and make the lockdown achievable.

Over the past week, the Council’s priority has been putting in plans to keep our essential services (water, sewerage, electricity, roading, community housing, community welfare) going and provide support for the most vulnerable members of our city. These plans and services are now mainly in place and from this coming week some additional services may be able to start up even if no face to face contact is required

My communication to you

All councillors are able to work as we stay home in our respective bubbles. New legislation has been passed so we can attend formal meetings online and not in person.

I have kept my communication to you all at a minimum, until now, as I know there was a lot of information out there, some which was being updated hourly and daily. As we settle into this lockdown, I am starting up regular updates to keep you current with key Council news, and business, and community support. Many of you have asked me for further information and or provided ideas. I will continue to do the best I can to answer them or at least put you in touch with the right people or organisation.

I have updated my website with relevant Covid-19 information covering key Reference sites, Community welfare, Things to do (from your couch), Council services, and Public transport. I will also be adding to this over the next week or so with more information on Council’s approach to a rates relief package and economic recovery measures

I have also suggested to our Council team that we should set up an online mechanism to capture people’s ideas and share suggestions. We did this with the Karori Project in 2017 and we could easily do something similar city wide as we have the available software. More news on this to come.

Our local economy

Within my portfolio of Economic Development, I have been in regular contact with local business leaders to see how they are doing and what we as a Council need to do to help them bounce back. There is no disguising the fact that in particular our hospitality, retail, tourism, tertiary and film sectors are taking an immediate big hit and will take time to recover.

We will need to rebuild our economy to make sure it can still provide a variety of jobs, good housing and the level of vibrancy our city has become known for. More about how the Council will be supporting the recovery will be announced soon.

Take care, stay home and stay safe