Retirement village report provides ‘certainty’

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A report which set out the decision-making process for the proposed Observatory Retirement Village was presented to the Waitaki District Council on Wednesday.

Chief financial officer Paul Hope said the report was to give the Waitaki District Health Service some “certainty of future” before it invests in the project.

Under the newly-proposed ownership and mangement structure, WDHS does not require council approval to proceed with the proposal. Three new charitable entities are to be formed, which will be independent of both council and WDHS, to manage the retirement village.

An independent third party report commissioned by the council to review the WDHS business case was also received yesterday.

WDHS now intends to use a significant amount of time and resources to further develop its business case which will help its decision to proceed or not. A total of $400,000 has been earmarked to spend on final designs, tenders and other such matters.

The only decision remaining for the council is whether it is willing to provide a loan for the development of the village. This issue will be revisited once a decision has been made on the business case and further information is provided.

By LINDA MCCARTHY