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Coromandel Habour Development Secrecy Continues

Here is my earlier post on this matter that includes an explanation for the continued secrecy at that point. 

It seems that staff still consider this a matter that must be kept under wraps with the report that goes to Council next week again being placed in Public Excluded. I wonder what lies beyond the barely plausible explanation provided by Communications Manager Laurna White that continues to require rate-payers to be kept in the dark.

I am not normally a suspicious person, but my sixth sense tells me that there is something going on here that needs very close attention if we are not be suckered into another rates-wasting boondoggle designed to give staff that exciting entrepreneurial feeling. This comes from dealing with enthusiastic, and self-serving teams of consultants keen to extract ever more fees while promoting fantastical schemes - don't get me started on the Thames Town Strategy, let alone the futile expenditure already incurred at Coromandel. 

The real issue here concerns the expansion of Sugar-Loaf, and just who pays for it - those who stand to benefit, or District rate-payers. Negotiations have gone on with the Coromandel Marine Farmers Association for several years, and it is time we found out just what the concessions are that they have screwed out of our Council in relation to the resource consent for starters.

The Council is over a barrel because of the need to achieve a satisfactory health and safety status without delay, as well as provide a safe ferry terminal and a non-conflicting point of entry for recreational fishermen. Surely this whole issue is of sufficient interest to every rate-payer for the details to be out in the open by now.

The problem arises with the need for Leach and Hammond to keep the Aquaculture (fish farming) concept alive in the face of comprehensively adverse indications, which along with a grand marina concept that has been conditionally costed at some $60m. Because of overlapping uses viv-a-vis the Sugar-Loaf development, this concept keeps getting in the way as they flounder around looking for possible commercial 'partners' for this Inner Harbour Development 

Why they cannot just drop this infamous 'legacy' concept and get on with the task in hand at Sugar-Loaf, (and tell us what they up to) is anyone's guess. If truth be known, Hammond already knows that the Inner Harbour is simply un-attainable, but continues to 'humour' Leach who has so much political capital swinging on the Inner Harbour project.

It is time the Economic Development Committee accepted a few 'home-truths' and laid down some ground-rules as was envisaged at the outset of their term. They continue to fluff around like a bunch of old women at a christening in the meantime while Leach/Hammond continue to float their unrealistic dreams. .    

I can't wait to see if this 'Public excluded' debacle continues into that Committee's agenda on 29 September. 





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Reader Comments (1)

Actually the real issue at Sugarloaf is whatever is proposed will be met with strong opposition from a very clued up faction of the local residents, ably led by Mr. De Luca. As soon as whatever is proposed for Sugarloaf enters the RMA process they will have a plan ready to delay process for many years to come. It also amazes me that Council is calling for title on Sugarloaf - I would have thought that the Coromandel Marine Farmers Assocation would have had far greater grounds to do so, especially as they paid the lions share of the original cost of construction (eventually anyway, as a loan was provided to them by TCDC). Perhaps TCDC is now compensating them market value? I would also imagine local Iwi would have an opinion on this also.

September 14, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterSailing Away

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