Frustration in Kaiapoi at quake repair vacuum

7:20 am on 19 June 2011

Labour MP Clayton Cosgrove says there's frustration among Kaiapoi residents and local officials over a lack of information about when quake repair work will go ahead in the town.

The Waimakariri District Council has been strongly advised by Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee to delay its plans following scientific analysis that last September's quake was a one-in-100-years event, not a one-in-500 as previously thought.

Mr Brownlee is said to want further investigations carried out and land remediation work to be standardised.

Mr Cosgrove, who's the local MP, says he was originally told by Mr Brownlee the delay would be only days or weeks.

But no further timeframe has been provided, he says, and such lack of information destroys people's spirit.

"Morale is tottering in the Waimak side of my electorate," Mr Cosgrove says, adding that it can be kept up if people see progress, even in incremental movements.

If more authoritative work needs to be done, he says, it should be accompanied by detailed information.

It's taking far too long - mayor

Waimakariri district mayor David Ayers says the problems for people in the Pines and Kairaki areas date from the first major quake last September.

"It's now well over nine months since that earthquake," he says, "and they just want the work to be done on their land - or to get answers, because it's taking far too long.

Mr Ayers says the council has to wait until the scientists come back with further information about the state of the district's land.

But a line will have to be drawn at some stage, he says, and people told what is happening to their land and their homes.