Ōpōtiki's local paper, the Ōpōtiki News, was bursting with job opportunities in recent weeks, many at the local Council as staffing needs increase to support a wide range of projects receiving funding support from the Government.
Ōpōtiki Mayor, Lyn Riesterer, said that several people had approached her about the vacancies in the paper but she saw it as "a good thing rather than a negative one."
"Understandably, a few locals wanted to talk to me about why the council had so many vacancies, but it was a good chance to talk about the amount of funding we have flowing into the district and the large-scale projects we are now supporting. In this current period of growth, we need to make sure we are ahead of the curve, with the right people in the right jobs ready to go," Mayor Riesterer said.
The Mayor said that Ōpōtiki was "very fortunate" to have many high-profile and large-scale projects already underway but there was an associated pressure on staff resourcing.
The infrastructure projects include the $100m harbour development, an ongoing multi-million-dollar wastewater upgrade, $4.5m footpath projects, LED lighting infill, road extensions, cycleway extensions, horse trails, $11.9m town centre revitalisation and Te Tāhuhu of Te Rangi.
Council has received funding support across these projects from Toi Moana, the Provincial Growth Fund, Infrastructure Reference Group, Bay Trust's Community Amenities Fund, Lotteries Grant Board and the Eastern Bay Energy Trust. Te Tāhuhu o Te Rangi has also received support from a number of generous private donors and fundraisers.
The roles are a mixture of replacement roles and new or changed positions. Where specialist work has grown significantly, council is bringing on in-house support in place of consultants and contractors.
"This new work, on top of our business as usual, is largely funded through central government. This activity is already bringing a lot of growth and opportunity to the district and it is council's role to drive and support that. I am excited to think of locals stepping in to some of these jobs. But some of these roles will be a chance for whānau who have had to leave for work opportunities to come home as well," Mayor Riesterer said.
Ōpōtiki District Council is currently advertising several roles with more expected in the coming months:
- Compliance Officer
- Senior Compliance Officer
- Development Engineer
- Land Transport Engineer
- Asset Officer
- Operations Officer
- 2x i-Site officers
No traffic lights. No traffic jams. In Opotiki you truly can have a great work / life balance and enjoy our 'Coast by Nature'.
The harbour project is a joint project between council and funders Ōpōtiki District Council, Toi Moana and the Provincial Growth Fund (PGF). The PGF is also funding new footpaths, cycleway extension and horse trails. Te Tāhuhu o Te Rangi is largely funded through the Infrastructure Reference Group but with significant contributions from BayTrust's Community Amenities Fund, Lotteries Grants Board, Eastern Bay Energy Trust and private donations and fundraising. And the lighting project is funded by NZTA and has received funding from Eastern Bay Energy Trust as well.