Council pays out another $25,000

A payment of $25,000 intended for Patea's Aotea Utanganui - Museum of South Taranaki has been kept by Puke Ariki.

The Taranaki Regional Council gives Puke Ariki a funding of $150,000 a year, with $25,000 to be forwarded to the museum in South Taranaki.

This year, however, Puke Ariki didn't pass on the funding and kept the full amount for its programmes, the ordinary meeting of the council heard yesterday.

This caused a dilemma for the regional council, which had to decide whether to find another $25,000 for the South Taranaki museum.

Chairman David MacLeod said he had anticipated that Puke Ariki would distribute the money to the South Taranaki Museum Trust as it had been doing in the past.

"We have been and asked Puke Ariki. I don't think we can go back to them again," he said.

Peter Horton said it seemed inconceivable that Puke Ariki took the council's money without knowing about the funding.

"They must have known what our expectation was."

Neil Walker said perhaps, since there had been a change in management, that the council's intention had not been clear.

Roger Maxwell wondered what effort had been made by Puke Ariki to cut its cloth so it could meet the council's expectations.

After what was, by its standards, a long discussion, the council decided to go with a proposal by Michael Joyce.

The council will give $25,000 to Puke Ariki to forward to the South Taranaki District Museum Trust, noting that it is mandatory that the money be passed on.

"We have to take some responsibility that we didn't come out with something clearer," Mr Joyce said.

"We'll do it on a one-off basis and review it as we go."

Taranaki Daily News