Masterton District Council has decided to procure its own roading services contract managed independently rather than pursuing a shared service across the three Wairarpa councils at this time.

Council staff have been exploring what a shared roading service managing one single contract for road maintenance and operations across the region may look like.

Masterton Mayor Lyn Patterson said Elected Members voted against continuing discussions on Wednesday.

“This is an opportunity we have taken time to carefully explore – we have been considered in our approach to the potential of joining up across the three Councils and didn’t want to rush that decision,” Mayor Patterson said.

“There was healthy debate across the Council table over this opportunity on Wednesday. At the end of it we resolved it wasn’t the right time to continue these discussions.”

Mayor Patterson said concerns around local competition and the Council’s key priorities in the roading services area were the determining factors.

“At the moment there is healthy appetite for large, high-value contracts across the region. However, Council was concerned that competition may not remain after a few years of a region-wide contract being let,” she said.

“Having decided not to progress one single roading contract across the three regions, the need to establish a centralised hub to manage the contract was not required at this time. 

“This is not Council saying no to a shared service, rather we‘re saying it’s just not the right time for us. In the meantime, we will progress procurement for our district and leave the opportunity for discussions to continue in the future.”

A tender for the contract is expected to be advertised in February with a view of a contract being in place by 1 July 2019.