We’re six months on from the February 22 earthquake and we take stock of that shattering event. It was a day that ended lives, jobs and completely altered the look and feel of our town. On the back of September 4th these events have brought almost a year of heightened emotion, change and shaky ground. Naturally some days have been better than others. As we work our way through all the decisions we have to make and questions we have to find answers for it still important to take time for families, friends and neighbours. I hope that as we pass the 6 months from February and edge closer to the 12 months of September that you are all able to take a little memorial time with those close to you.
Compensation for home improvements
The media has been hot on the topic of the governments offer in relation to residents not having home improvements recognised unless they have altered the floor plan. We also are hearing from a lot of people who are really distressed about what this means for them. This afternoon we met with a number of National MP’s and we raised this issue. They felt that there was a definite need to talk this through more thoroughly with the Earthquake Minister because of the initial perception that the government would take improvements into account if people kept their receipts. We look forward to hearing the outcome of that discussion.
HELP US WITH THIS QUESTIONNAIRE – We would like to know how many people are affected by this issue and how much people have spent. Please go to the following online form and click the appropriate amount of money you have spent on home improvements on your property. Please do this only once. If you have spent nothing then also fill out this form. The more people we hear from the better the picture we will get around this issue. This data will be useful in our future discussions with National MPs. Click the link to fill in 2 questions –
REBUILD TO REPAIR
At the last CanCERN meeting the suggestion was made that many people had gone from being assessed as a rebuild to a repair following the land announcements. Obviously this is an alarming concept and we had thought to include this in our survey. With further discussion to try to unpack what may be happening, we thought it may be important to explain this situation.
We all know there have been many assessors and assessments, EQC, insurance and Project Management, who have implied or even said words to the effect that your house is a ‘write off’ or a ‘demo’ but these people do not have the authority to make that decision. Their job is to assess the scope of damage and collect the information that is needed for the INSURER to make that decision and it is the INSURER, when they are ready to begin the settlement process, who will inform you of the decision. Obviously ‘loose lips’ have played a part in shaping our thoughts as we pick up on any suggestion of information that may give us insight into the future of our homes. These loose lips have been out of order. CanCERN wonders if the ‘loose lips’ are the cause of the Rebuild to Repair issue that is now being voiced. If you have paperwork or clear evidence from your insurer that you were originally a rebuild and now you are a repair please your resident association or resident group know. This is a serious issue.
CENTRAL CITY PLAN
We went to a very slick presentation of the Central City Plan this week. A great deal of work has gone into this plan and it seems to reflect the discussions we hear in the community. But there are also things in the plan that don’t sit well with some and aspects of it may impact directly on existing residents. At the presentation we raised the issue of the process for public participation and in response received a list of the road show dates and venues and the closing date for the written submissions. Of course we pushed a little harder to ascertain just how robust, inclusive, accessible and meaningful this feedback process actually is and were told that the written submissions were known to be a ‘blunt tool’ but that was the process that the Council liked to follow. I counted to ten at that point! We all understand that CCC has had tremendous pressure placed upon it to get this Central City Plan out within 9 months but how good is the plan if there is no time for discussion and debate? There is a time for speed and a time for deliberation. We realise that business needs to get up and running as soon as possible but does everything else have to be set in stone too? If we want public participation to be better, we need to start telling the decision makers how we want to participate. In the meantime, use the written submission ‘blunt tool’ if you want to make comment on the Central City Plan. For details http://www.centralcityplan.org.nz//************ get tags and categories ****************/ ?>
This long awaited meeting with Roger was worth the wait. As a result we have an agreement that CanCERN and CERA will work co-operatively to improve the communications and community engagement processes of CERA. This means that CanCERN will be involved in the early planning stages of certain communications. The first collaboration we are exploring is the supporting information which will come out to help Red Zone residents make their decision. Roger has also recognised that there is benefit in CanCERN staff and the CERA management team meeting to better understand the community’s perspective. Roger is keen to meet regularly with us and to make himself available to the CanCERN membership so he can keep abreast of the looming issues from our perspective./************ get tags and categories ****************/ ?>
This meeting was to followed a similar process to that which we started with AMI. The notes from this meeting will come out next week. One stand out piece of information was that IAG states on its assessments the cost of the repair and the rebuild when a house is to be repaired. The formulae is that the house will become a rebuild if the repair bill is higher than 80% of the total rebuild and all of this information will be coming out to IAG customers soon. They will send us the dates. Apparently the first lot of assessments have been sent out to Bexley./************ get tags and categories ****************/ ?>
AMI has generously offered to use their expert design staff to format our newsletter. We have realised that there is a need for this newsletter to be available in different formats as the requests for it increase. We would like to thank AMI staff for the support they are offering to make this newsletter even better. If you would like to receive AMI’s updates click here to subscribe.
AMI’s financial information is due out soon. We have all heard about the financial state of AMI and the government’s support for this Canterbury company. AMI would like to assure you that any adverse information with regards to their financial situation will have absolutely no bearing on their customer’s settlements.