Another New Year handout from the PGF nudges us to wonder: where’s the Jones boy?

So where’s Shane Jones, we wondered after the Point of Order Trough Monitor sounded its second alert of the week.

Again, the alert was triggered by the sound of taxpayers’ money being given away by the Parliamentary Undersecretary for Regional Economic Development, Fletcher Tabuteau.

The Provincial Growth Fund – he brayed – is investing $10.88 million to boost business and tourism opportunities in Kaikōura.

As part of the Kaikōura Marina Development Programme, two projects will receive PGF funding:

  • A $9.88 million investment to begin the design and build of the Wakatu Quay
  • $1 million to look into the potential of South Bay Harbour and surrounding areas

Both projects will be managed by the Kaikōura District Council.

Inevitably, job opportunities were highlighted in the press statement.

“This is a great time to support tourism and business opportunities in the Kaikōura region as they turn around economic and environmental struggles following the devastating earthquake in 2016,” Fletcher Tabuteau said.

“Tourism is one of Kaikōura’s largest employers and main industries. The Kaikōura Marina Development Programme begins the process of increasing the tourism destinations available in Kaikōura.

“The development programme is projected to create up to 50 new jobs and up to 100 indirect new jobs in the wider Kaikōura region.

PGF funding of $9.88 million has been allocated for the design and build of Wakatu Quay Development – a new destination intended to revitalise the wharves “and celebrate the linkages of Kaikōura to its marine environment”.

You could say that about any development in any seaside town – couldn’t you?

The space will include dining, retail and local cultural elements.

“The purpose of the Wakatu Quay redevelopment will mean visitors can take in the beauty of the surrounding scenes including the Seaward Kaikōura Range,” Fletcher Tabuteau said

But wait.  There’s more.

PGF funding of a further $1 million is earmarked “to look into the potential of South Bay Harbour and surrounding areas”.

It sounds as if this sum will be spent on finding if a good reason can be found for calling Tabuteau or Jones back to Kaikoura to announce PGF funding in yet another project.

“The PGF boost will also provide the foundation for the future development of South Bay Harbour which is currently the launching site for the marine eco-tourism operators, commercial fishing sectors and recreational users.

“These PGF projects align with the Canterbury Regional Economic Development Strategy’s regional visitor aims, with a strong focus on sustainable growth in tourism,” Fletcher Tabuteau said.

The press statement reminds us that funding from the Provincial Growth Fund is approved in principle and announced, after which contracts are negotiated.

Some funding may depend on the completion of business cases. Payments are made once agreed milestones are met. These are set as part of contract negotiations, and differ from project to project.

One thought on “Another New Year handout from the PGF nudges us to wonder: where’s the Jones boy?

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