Kia ora Wellington, fantastic news this afternoon everyone. In fact, it’s the news we’ve all been waiting for.
Every one of you should be immensely proud of your efforts in bringing it about. Our Region has done particularly well, with no new Covid cases in the last four days.
As you would have heard, at midnight on Monday 27 April, our country will move out of full lockdown and into Alert Level 3, where we will remain for at least two weeks.
This is great news, because it means we are a step closer to easing lockdown restrictions and because it signals that we are beating the Covid-19 virus – with the terrible health and economic consequences that it brings. That is already a huge achievement.
But it absolutely doesn’t mean we can relax – as the Prime Minister said we do not want to lose the hard won gains. In fact, for most of us, very little will change under Alert Level 3.
However from tomorrow week we will start to see more businesses being able operate and there will be some ability to click and collect. Bubbles will be able to slightly expand in some circumstances.
Importantly construction will be able to resume under Level 3 protocols. We’ll be able to get on with more water projects too.
If you can work from home continue to do so. Children who can learn from home will continue to do so.
For the Council, Alert Level 3 will look a lot like Level 4.
Most of our staff will continue to work from home, and most of our services must remain closed. This includes libraries, pools, recreation centres, community centres, playgrounds, and the landfill.
One area that we are looking to reopen, though with conditions, is Makara Peak Mountain Bike Park. We will provide more details on those conditions later in the week.
Our customer service team will continue to provide service and support over the phone, on social media, or via email. Council meetings will continue via Zoom – and a reminder we have one this Thursday, so please join us online for that. The agenda is online.
As the Prime Minister said today, when Alert Level 3 arrives we will have more economic freedoms – in terms of some construction and manufacturing re-starting, and contactless retail – but not more social freedoms. We all need to keep to our bubbles, keep good hygiene, keep travel to a minimum, and stay home if you’re feeling sick.
Wellington, you’ve done a brilliant job over the past month, let’s keep that up over the next three weeks. Hopefully at the end of that period, we’ll be able to move to an even lower Alert Level.
That will be something to celebrate.
Kia kaha everyone.