The Canterbury Employers’ Chamber of Commerce (CECC) is pleased to submit in response to the “Smart Choices 2015-2025 Christchurch City Consultation Document relating to the Long Term Plan” (LTP).
We consider this LTP to be the most critical in living history and one that will have more influence in determining the future direction of our city than any other plan to date. We understand that the LTP process and required inputs are described by the Local Government Act 2002 and subsequent amendments in 2014 which now require that the LTP include a financial strategy and infrastructure strategy. Clearly this plan is positioned very much in the context of city recovering and involves trade-offs and compromise to achieve optimal outcomes. It is a plan that is in the context of a city that is facing major financial shortfalls (currently projected at $1.2 billion) and some hard choices in this context. It is critical as a city we understand that:
- This is a time for calm heads and brave decisions.
- We need to work from first principles and have a strong vision for our city.
- There needs to be a significant emphasis on strategic thinking.
- We need to recognise that we are going to have to do things differently in the future than wehave done in the past.
- There are serious considerations around long term benefits vs short term savings.
- We need to contextualise the central city as an ecosystem for generating growth of the wider Christchurch area.
- We have to carefully assess the level of capacity and capability the Council has to undertake its own on-going tasks.
- We need to measure how we are making progress in the context of this city’s recovery and growth.