Tavendale to remain on project board

Former Waitaki district councillor and deputy mayor Melanie Tavendale. PHOTO: SUPPLIED

Former Waitaki deputy mayor Melanie Tavendale will remain as the council’s interim representative on the Waitaki Event Centre project board.

Mrs Tavendale, who decided not to seek re-election after nine years as a councillor, will remain on the board until the new council is sworn in at the end of the month.

Waitaki Mayor Gary Kircher, who had previously been the council’s other representative on the board, had stepped back from his role during the election period.

Councillors agreed at the final meeting of the triennium last week to keep Mrs Tavendale involved until two new council representatives are appointed.

‘‘Consistency and momentum is important. This gives us the opportunity to provide a smooth handover once [the] new council gets their feet under the table,’’ Mrs Tavendale said.

The board also recommended Network Waitaki chief executive Geoff Douch be appointed to the board as a representative of Network Waitaki, the naming right sponsors of the Waitaki Event Centre.

‘‘Geoff will bring technical and engineering skill to the project, which will prove invaluable as we continue forward.’’

The revised board is: Kevin Malcolm, Doug Hurst (Waitaki Event Centre Trust), David Higgins (Te Runanga o Ngai Tahu), Peter Robinson (independent), Mr Douch and Mrs Tavendale.

The procurement process for contractors to complete the six›court event centre opened last week and closes on November 7. Three are expected to be shortlisted to provide proposals next year.

Last month, the Waitaki Event Centre Trust — responsible for fundraising and getting the project off the ground — made an application to the Lottery Community Facilities fund.

Fundraising efforts for the $30-million centre have reached $21 million so far.

Another application will be made to the Otago Community Trust and another to the Lotteries significant projects fund when it opens next year.