A strategic alliance of South Island district councils could be handy to join, but Queenstown's council will not be "dying in the ditch" if it opts out, the resort's mayor says.
Joining the South Island Strategic Alliance, which is made up of South Island mayors and council chief executive officers, was discussed at yesterday's full meeting of the Queenstown Lakes District Council, but many councillors, and Queenstown District Mayor Vanessa van Uden, were blunt about the value of joining.
Wanaka ward councillor Lyall Cocks was the first to speak out on the alliance's lack of appeal.
"If we're looking at strategic alliances, we should be looking to where we would get the most benefit," he said.
"Queenstown Airport and Auckland Airport have forged an alliance, and no matter how controversial it was, it has given Queenstown Airport benefits, so why don't we look at a strategic alliance with Auckland?"
Ms van Uden said the alliance would not be mutually exclusive, and other alliances could still be entered into.
The South Island alliance would be based on information sharing and providing collaborative services.
As an example information could be shared on rural roading from the Waitaki District Council, or economic development information could be shared by the Southland District Council, Ms Van Uden said.
Councillor Trevor Tattersfield said he was not "wildly enthusiastic" about joining the alliance.
Ms van Uden, in bringing the discussion to a close, said: "If we don't want to be involved its not something I'm going to be dying in the ditch about."
- © Fairfax NZ News
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