Investment fund may be best bang for Inglewood bucks

TARYN UTIGER
Last updated 05:00 24/07/2014

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Inglewood's $8 million roading budget could be made into a perpetual investment fund.

Last week the New Plymouth District Council announced roading in Inglewood would get an $8 million boost over the next 10 years because the Junction Rd leases in the former Inglewood County area had been sold.

The council said it would establish a 10-year programme of road improvements and $800,000 worth of projects would happen each year.

However, last night councillors Richard Jordan and Heather Dodunski questioned if that was the best bang for Inglewood's buck.

"Is there any reason why it can't be used as a long term fund, and just the interest used for projects? Then you'd have a longer term benefit," Jordan said. "Just because the $8m is there doesn't mean you have to rush out and spend it."

Deputy mayor Dodunski was quick to back Jordan on the idea.

"This is a project that is dear to my heart," she said.

If the $8m was to be put into a fund it would draw up to $400,000 a year in interest, she said.

"That would do a lot of the main projects anyway, as there's not a lot of projects that cost more than that.

"This group of people have been coming to us about this since I started in 1989, so we don't have to rush a decision."

Councillor Marie Pearce, of Inglewood, questioned if Dodunski was saying the $8m should be put into a perpetual investment fund (Pif).

The Inglewood Pif (iPif) would be a good idea to begin with, Dodunski said, and with the interest the council would end up with more than the original $8m for roading.

Dodunski suggested the council officers should look into the idea while the proposal goes out for consultation to set the priorities for the road works.

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