Piha Ratepayers & Residents Association has supported the Combined Waitakere Ranges R&R Group in a Press Release and letter to Auckland Mayor, Phil Goff. Both appear below for your interest. Also see our previous posting HERE.
PRESS RELEASE – for immediate release Wednesday 5 April 2017
From: Waitakere Ranges Combined Residents and Ratepayers Group
RANGES RATEPAYERS DEMAND WATERCARE PLANT REVIEW
Community groups throughout the environmentally sensitive Waitakere Ranges are outraged that Watercare Services, a Council Controlled Organisation (CCO), is failing to properly consult with its communities or consider the social or environmental impact of its plans.
More than 100 people in Oratia are threatened with losing their homes if Watercare’s proposed new Huia Water Treatment Plant is built in Parker Rd, one of three sites short listed. The other two sites are in Titirangi where significant vegetation will need to be removed.
Combined Residents and Ratepayers’ groups and individual communities across the Waitakere Ranges are united in demanding that each of Watercare’s proposed sites are reviewed in the light of the impact they would have on their communities.
“The stress and anxiety placed on residents in these communities due to Watercare’s inadequate communication and consultation over the site selection process is unfair and unnecessary”, says Waitakere Ranges Combined Residents and Ratepayers Group Chair Kubi Witten-Hannah.
The Group, which represents the Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area from Titirangi to Piha and Swanson, says all local communities are threatened by the lack of accountability of Council Controlled Organisations (CCOs) when planning new infrastructure.
In a letter to Auckland’s Mayor Phil Goff and councillors, Mr Witten-Hannah demands that the Council commissions an independent review of the entire water supply strategy for Auckland, including the Huia Water Treatment Plant replacement. He says the review must include the objectives of protecting both the environment and the social impact of the plant on affected communities. The residents are also calling for a proper and thorough community consultation to take place. Section 59 of the Local Government Act requires Watercare to “exhibit a sense of social and environmental responsibility“.
The Combined R&R Group, comprising representatives from 13 communities in the Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area, understands that a new water treatment plant is necessary and must go somewhere. However the group believes that the Council must make the CCO accountable and to satisfy itself, through a review of the strategy for water supply, that the best options are being considered for the whole Auckland area.
Kubi Witten-Hannah, Chair Combined R&R Group Ph 0272 480282
Greg Presland, Chair Waitakere Ranges Local Board Ph 021 998411
To: His Worship the Mayor Phil Goff, Auckland Council
Stephen Town, CEO Auckland Council
cc: Editors, NZ Herald, Western Leader
cc: Councillors Mike Lee, Christine Fletcher, Cathy Casey, Ross Clow, Penny Hulse, Linda Cooper, Desley Simpson, Richard Hills, Greg Sayers, John Watson, Wayne Walker, Bill Cashmore, Dick Quax, Sharon Stewart, Fa’anana Efeso Collins, Alf Filipaina, Daniel Newman, John Walker, Denise Lee, Chris Darby.
cc: Save Oratia, Manuka Road Residents.
From: The Waitakere Ranges Combined Residents and Ratepayer Associations Group
Wednesday 5 April 2017
Dear Mayor Phil Goff and Mr Town,
RE: WATERCARE TREATMENT PLANT REVIEW
A meeting was held recently of the Waitakere Ranges Combined Residents and Ratepayer Associations, who represent the communities of Piha, Huia-Cornwallis, Titirangi, Laingholm, Parau, South Titirangi, Henderson Valley, Karekare, Waiatarua, Glen Eden, the Preserve the Swanson Foothills Society and the Waitakere Ranges Protection Society. Residents from Oratia and Waima were also present.
You will no doubt be well aware of the issue surrounding the selection of the site for the new Huia Water Treatment Plant which is causing a great deal of anxiety in both Oratia and Titirangi.
Our group has agreed the following resolution:
“In view of the situation that has arisen over the selection of the site for the new Huia WTP this group requires Council to commission an independent review of the entire water supply strategy for Auckland, including the Huia WTP replacement, to include the objective of protecting the environment and the social impact on affected communities; and for proper and thorough consultation with the community to take place as specified in s59 of the Local Government Act.”
For your information s59 of the Local Government Act states:
59 Principal objective of council-controlled organisation
(1) The principal objective of a council-controlled organisation is to—
(a) achieve the objectives of its shareholders, both commercial and non-commercial, as specified in the statement of intent; and
(b) be a good employer; and
(c) exhibit a sense of social and environmental responsibility by having regard to the interests of the community in which it operates and by endeavouring to accommodate or encourage these when able to do so; and
(d) if the council-controlled organisation is a council-controlled trading organisation, conduct its affairs in accordance with sound business practice.
We look forward to your response.
Chair, Waitakere Ranges Combined Residents and Ratepayer Associations Group