Request for car charging station
Balclutha could get an electric vehicle charging station if the Clutha District Council takes into consideration a verbal submission at a hearing on its draft 2016-17 annual plan held yesterday.
Roy Johnstone, of Balclutha, made a verbal submission yesterday asking the council to approve the use of land for a high-power, fast-charging station for electric vehicles.
He said electric cars were the future and there were three already in the Clutha district.
"We are leading the way.''
According to driveelectric.org.nz, there are 1015 registered electric cars in New Zealand.
Balclutha could lead the way for other small towns by installing a fast-charging station.
"It's up to individuals and the council.''
The nearest fast-charging stations are in Dunedin and Invercargill.
Mr Johnstone, who has his own charger at home, said he could not get to Dunedin and back to Balclutha in his fully charged electric car.
He pointed out the fast chargers took 30 minutes and this would encourage travellers to spend time in the township.
A charging station location was suggested at the car park near The Warehouse.
He said Charge Net NZ would be able to install a station at a designated spot at no cost to the council.
He urged the council to approve the use of the land near Charlotte St.
Cross Recreation Centre manager Penny Batchelor asked the council to increase the centre's annual grant by $10,000 to $41,000.
She said use of the non-profit facility had increased from 60,000 people to 80,000 annually.
It was a well-used facility and the extra $10,000 would help staff accumulate more revenue from other sources.
At present, the centre was running "on the fumes of an oily rag''.
Twenty groups gave verbal submissions. They spoke on matters such as freedom campers and the cost and employment of dust suppressant on rural roads.