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Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from TCDC - Mayor's message

22 December 2015

"Here's wishing you all a wonderful Christmas and a happy New Year over this festive season.

As we head into another beautiful Coromandel summer, I hope you're getting to spend more time with family and friends, relax and enjoy the holidays. I'll be in Kuaotunu with my wife Trudie, our family and spending as much of my time as I can with the grandkids.  

This is my last summer as Mayor as I am standing down next year after two terms (six years in office). I feel indescribably proud of where this District has come in the last six years and seeing this Council really starting to hit its stride in making significant progress in our Anchor projects (Coromandel Great Walks, Stage 2 of the Rail Trail from Kopu to Kaiaua, Coromandel Harbour Project and our WW1 Memorial Forest).

As we're a small Council, with these types of projects we look for collaboration and partnerships, particularly around funding, so costs aren't falling solely on our ratepayers. In this respect we're already building strong relations with organisations, including the Waikato Regional Council, the Department of Conservation and central government agencies, and we value their commitment to working with us.

Internally we've introduced better business improvements to project management and increased our commitment to achieve a high standard of customer service to you all.

Some of the highlights for me include a reinvigorated commitment to community empowerment through the Community Boards and strengthened local Council area office, keeping the average District rate increase to 0.7% since 2010, lowering development contributions and lowering our external debt by paying off outstanding debt from the three eastern seaboard wastewater treatment plants.

I also want to pay tribute to all our elected members who represent our communities. It's a job that takes time, energy, can be thankless and takes real commitment. But it's also an extremely rewarding experience, when you see what can be achieved when we all work together to continue to make the Coromandel such a unique place.

For me personally, it's been a humbling and fulfilling experience to have been your Mayor for the past two terms. I have met some fantastic people along the way and I'm standing down - because six years is long enough - and there needs to be a succession to allow new energy to come through.

So over this summer I ask you to think about how you can contribute to keeping the Coromandel special by considering making the commitment to stand as an elected representative for your community - be it on your Community Board or as a Councillor.

Over summer, there are a whole lot of people who already make a huge commitment to our District. I want to pass on my heartfelt thanks to all our emergency services - the Westpac Rescue Helicopter organisation, St John, police, coastguard, lifeguards, fire service and all the other volunteers. These people, along with our Council staff and contractors, work extremely hard over summertime as the numbers of people visiting the Coromandel increase over this period.

So whether you're visiting or live here, stay safe, happy holidays and enjoy all the experiences which makes the Coromandel  "good for your soul,"

All the best,

Mayor Glenn Leach.