Opotiki's Harbour Project wins local government award
On Friday night (16 July 2021), Local Government New Zealand held the 2021 LGNZ EXCELLENCE Awards in Blenheim. These awards recognise and celebrate outstanding work by local councils around the country to promote and grow the well-being of their communities.
Ōpōtiki District Council’s project – The Ōpōtiki Harbour Transformation Project as Catalytic Capital for Further Investment into Economic Growth – was named the winner of the Martin Jenkins EXCELLENCE Award for Economic Well-being. The project also took out the top honour on the evening as the overall Local EXCELLENCE winner.
Ōpōtiki Mayor, Lyn Riesterer, attended the awards along with several councillors and the Chief Executive. She said that the announcement was an absolute thrill and a privilege to be chosen from so many outstanding projects.
“The community, the council, Whakatōhea, and private enterprise have worked so hard on this project for such a long time. With the financial backing of central government and the Bay of Plenty Regional Council we have been able to achieve something of this scale and really make a difference in our local communities.
“This project is the result of a lot of collaboration, conversations, and hard mahi - two mayors and two Chief Executives and more than 20 years of work towards this vision. Now we are finally seeing the changes in our communities and the changes in our economic outlook thanks to the vision of many others before me, particularly John Forbes and Robert Edwards and many councillors over those years.
“The biggest thanks of course goes to our community who have been with us on this journey and have backed this vision throughout,” Mayor Riesterer said.
The Mayor explained that the awards are an opportunity to celebrate success, acknowledge councils who are doing things differently and share stories and lessons with other councils.
“Sitting around that room last night, there were so many people and organisations who have been part of this journey with us. Our Provincial Development Unit partners, regional council, neighbouring councils and of course Whakatōhea as well.
“It was an amazing evening and I’d like to thank all those that made it happen,” Mayor Riesterer said.