Waimea Village purchase starts
Kit Maling says he is now determined to make sure his Waimea Village purchase deal is completed by the end of the month.
The former Tasman District councillor and police inspector announced his plan to purchase the village and transfer its ownership to the residents three weeks ago as part of his mayoral campaign. He lost the election to incumbent mayor Richard Kempthorne by 734 votes, gaining 5415 votes to Richard's final score of 6149.
Kit said on Tuesday that he had spent the days following Saturday's announcement working with lawyers and accountants to perform due diligence on the Waimea Village deal.
"I want to finish this," he said. "I want to have it sewn up by the end of this month."
He said 140 residents had committed to becoming shareholders under the deal, which represents more than half of the village's population. Kit thought there would be more to come, as not all residents had responded. There are about 250 people living in the village's 171 houses.
"We've made progress and we're quite pleased with the way things are going," he said.
Richmond resident Robert Souch shares ownership of a property in Waimea Village with his son Rupert. Robert also owns Soucheby's Antiques next door to the village on Gladstone Rd, saying many of the older residents liked to drop in and chat with him.
He and Rupert have signed up to purchase a share of the village under Kit's plan, describing it as "brilliant" and "the only way to go". Robert said the village residents were fully behind the plan, describing the last community meeting held by Kit as "absolutely standing room only".
"It's a shame it's taken so long but full credit to Kit Maling and all the people who have pushed it along," he said.
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