Orewa hall change mooted

The Hibiscus & Bays Local Board is pressing forward with its plan to see Orewa Community Hall transferred from being run by Auckland Council to being run by a Trust.

The process, which includes an expression of interest process, is expected to cost $15,000. It was sought by the local board in its previous term, because of the uproar when Auckland Council significantly raised hall hire charges.

Local board chair Julia Parfitt says that a regime change will mean more affordable fees for the community groups that use the hall. A not-for-profit community Trust would set its own fees and manage bookings and general maintenance.

The process of exploring this option has begun, with Council staff set to hold community meetings starting this month to gauge interest in the proposal.

Expressions of interest will be called for starting in December. Council community places programmes and partnership advisor Marilyn Kelly told members at last month’s local board meeting that if there is no interest from the community in forming a Trust to manage the hall, the process will stop at that stage and revert to the status quo.

Mrs Parfitt says she is confident that the community-lead model is a good one and hopes that volunteers will put up their hands to get involved.

“We know of many halls within the local board area that are independently managed and provide an affordable accessible service, such as Whangaparaoa Hall,” she says.


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