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Newly refurbished Taupo courthouse opens

Newly refurbished Taupo courthouse opens

Courts Minister, Rick Barker officially opened the newly-refurbished Taupo courthouse today, saying it is a fine example of a building that has undergone a complete makeover over the course of a year resulting in a very sharp looking, modern courthouse.

“The original courthouse was built in 1963 and was refurbished thirty years later in 1993, but as the years have passed the courthouse has struggled to meet the demands of a busy and varied workload. It had become too small to provide the functionality required of a modern court,” Mr Barker said.

“The newly-refurbished courthouse has a new separate hearing room, new judges’ chambers, increased administrative capacity, improved counter operations for civil, family, criminal and collections, new secure interview facilities, and public meeting areas and increased secure parking facilities.

“I am especially pleased with the new multipurpose hearing room. Today’s court needs to be able to accommodate a wide range of cases such as Criminal and Civil cases in the District Court, Youth and Family Court hearings, Environment Court hearings as well as Disputes and Tenancy Tribunal hearings . The multipurpose hearing room will allow the court manager more flexibility when it comes to scheduling cases, which should result in better services for court users.

“The Taupo Court refurbishment is the latest in the Government’s programme of improving court house facilities throughout New Zealand, and it’s great to be here and see first hand the results of our approach", Mr Barker said.

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Taupo MP, Mark Burton also attended the official opening and welcomed the redevelopment.

"This refurbishment is a major upgrading of the support and facilities available to all those local people involved in Court proceedings, and complements the neighbouring new Police station which recently opened”, Mr Burton said.

The Palmerston North Courthouse will be the next to benefit from the Government’s investment programme. This refurbishment will see two new additional courtrooms, additional judicial space and refurbished interior spaces. The Palmerston North Courthouse redevelopment is scheduled for completion in mid 2008.

ENDS

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