Tararua District goes to work on the jobs issue

Here’s an initiative involving the Tararua District Council worthy of support by North Eketahuna folk (and certainly endorsed by their hard-working member).

Businesses and industry in Palmerston North, Tararua, Kapiti, Horowhenua and Wairarapa are being invited to a Regional Employment Summit to get a picture on what is happening in the current economic climate and what is likely to happen in the local economy.

The summit is being hosted by the four Economic Development Agencies, Vision Manawatu, Tararua District Council, Nature Coast Enterprise, Wairarapa Chamber of Commerce and the Ministry of Social Development and will be held at the Palmerston North Convention Centre on Monday 6 April 2009.

The purpose of the summit is to give business owners, industry and stakeholders an up to date picture of the global, national and local situation and the expectations and opportunities for our region.

Tararua District Council’s Manager Community Development, Troy Gerbich, is bang on when he says many businesses are feeling the pinch but are unsure what – if anything – they can do about it. Well, here’s an opportunity to flesh out the local issues and consider some practical solutions to help them make good business decisions during tough times.

The summit will be chaired by Elaine Reilly, Vision Manawatu’s Economic Development Agency Acting Chief Executive. Speakers will be Palmerston North Mayor Jono Naylor and Dr Ganesh Nana, the chief economist at BERL.

You could say it’s a regional version of the Job Summit recently organised by your government.

If you want to keep tabs on the follow-up work from the Job Summit, by the way, you can find which Ministers are supposed to be doing what (and hold the buggers to account).

One outcome of the 9 March Cabinet meeting was to allocate the ideas as set out in a publicly available list.

After that meeting, as another paper explains, the process of sorting through the “Near Term and High Priority” ideas (those that look promising and will have an impact in the next 2-6 months) got under way.

These proposals need to be fleshed out and considered as part of the Government’s policy and Budget programme.

There are over 40 ideas in this group. These include: the top 20 ideas announced last Friday plus further ideas from the “Near Term and High Priority” group presented at the Summit, plus some additional high priority initiatives from the Minister of Education. This group also includes the Te Araroa walkway/cycleway proposal.

You can count on Alf – of course – to be lobbying to have the walkway/cycleway come through Eketahuna (but not in a way that buggers up the flow of traffic through the main drag).

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