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Monday
Mar232015

Now For A Waikato-Wide Slush Fund!

What is it about people who get elected to councils that drives them to believe that they are entitled to use rate-payer money for fancy projects that are needed for the purpose of "helping districts and regions become more prosperous and vibrant."

Such is the case now with WRC entering into the race to make our money available for all manner of projects that Cr Lois Livingstone believes could assist to overcome "some of the worst socio-economic statistics in the country." Bah-humbug! - where are these statistics, and what the hell are they do with the Regional Council in any case?

This confounded woooly thinking always seems to erupt at about this time in a councils term when they start dreaming up more ways to raise more rates and more projects on which to spend them in their Long Term Plans - elections seem so far away!

It is necessary to remind these people that they were elected for one purpose and one purpose only - to rate and spend for opex and capex for core projects only. No one gave them a mandate to enter into the kind of nonsense expounded in this Waikato Times article that I presume is accurate and reflects some presser put out by the Council.

Chair Paula Southgate says that "It is said that the Development Fund ($18m over ten years would you believe!) could help the region secure Government funding and foster partnerships across the region." What a load of baloney.

'Balloons Over Waikato' already have their hands out to scoff some of the largesse when and if it becomes available - it costs $860,000 to run and according Michele Connell, General manager it contributes $6.8m to the Hamilton economy - great, then let Hamilton pay for it!

Hamilton Gardens Arts Festival is another in a buds in May gathering mood. Both those will surely assist with the grave socio-economic statistics! 

One would have thought that the WRC had already had its fingers sufficiently burnt with the Velodrome in Cambridge.  Fortunately there appears to be a rearguard action going on to squash the idea, but whether they have the numbers to oppose the starry-eyed wombats is another matter.  

It is to be hoped that sufficient concerned WRC rate-payers emerge from the woodwork to make themselves heard in the upcoming consultation process. Unfortunately, experience tells us that once councillors of this inclination get the bit between their teeth, and items of this nature into the draft LTP Budget, that it it is as hard as all get-out to remove them.

But a threat to mount a real campaign against those who succumb to these blandishments come the election can be effective. 

 

 

 

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Reader Comments (1)

Perhaps this fund could be used for the Coromandel Wharf development and the Coastal Walkway? Both have regional significance, and people in Taupo owe us for funding their lake cleanup.

March 24, 2015 | Unregistered Commentersailing away

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