20 May 2023

Questions over whether Budget provides enough for cyclone recovery

10:23 am on 20 May 2023
Central Hawke's Bay mayor Alex Walker at the site of the Tikokino Road treatment plant.

Central Hawke's Bay Mayor Alex Walker. Photo: Screenshot / Central Hawke's Bay District Council

The Hawke's Bay District Council is questioning whether enough funds have been allocated from Budget 2023 to repair the damage caused by Cyclone Gabrielle.

The government announced a $6 billion National Resilience Plan, and a $100 million flood infrastructure fund as part of this year's Budget.

Central Hawke's Bay Mayor Alex Walker said the Budget announcement was a step in the right direction, but the scale of the damage was on another level.

"For instance the cost sharing fund of $100 million on floods and infrastructure is just only really a starting point for the huge work that we've got ahead of us in Hawke's Bay," she said.

She worried the money would be spread too thinly throughout the country.

"We think that there is an urgent need of nearly $1.4 billion worth of investment just in the next twelve months," she said.

"We haven't yet even got to delving into the scope of how big this could be over a three to five year programme, but it is certainly at least a three-year project."

Walker said the council was still focused on the most urgent repairs, and she had no idea how long the recovery would take.

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