Parata see­ing too much red

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS - By KRIS DANDO

The size and num­ber of signs pro­mot­ing Labour’s Kris Faafoi for the up­com­ing Mana by-elec­tion have per­plexed his main op­po­nent, who has la­belled the card­board hoard­ings as ‘‘unimag­i­na­tive tag­ging’’ and a show of ar­ro­gance.

Mun­gavin Ave has been blan­keted with the big red signs, with four in a 100-me­tre stretch be­tween McKil­lop St and Porirua Park.

Kapi-Mana News has re­ceived a num­ber of queries from lo­cal res­i­dents, ques­tion­ing the hoard­ings’ size and num­ber.

Na­tional Party can­di­date Hekia Parata is also vexed, par­tic­u­larly be­cause of how strin­gent the rules were in 2008.

‘‘When I ran in Mana two years ago, if my signs were an inch over the [3 me­tre square] limit, I was im­me­di­ately rung up. The feed­back we are get­ting is that they [ Mr Faafoi’s signs] are just over the top. This is unimag­i­na­tive tag­ging, isn’t it?’’

Ms Parata says she hasn’t had her own cam­paign plac­ards erected yet be­cause she felt ‘‘ the com­mu­nity de­served a break’’ fol­low­ing the lo­cal body elec­tions.

‘‘ These signs clut­ter up pub­lic space and we want to give peo­ple a re­prieve be­fore we put up our own hoard­ings.

‘‘To me, it looks like Labour are mark­ing out their ter­ri­tory. It’s very ar­ro­gant and peo­ple are say­ing that it looks des­per­ate.’’

The Elec­toral Act states that no sign can be more than three me­tres square. All other rules con­cern­ing elec­tion signs re­vert to Porirua City Coun­cil’s by­laws.

PCC has con­firmed that while signs can’t be within 50 me­tres of an in­ter­sec­tion or on a city park or re­serve, and must not ex­ceed 1.8m in height, there is ‘‘dis­cre­tion’’ al­lowed in some in­stances. The 1.8m rule does not have to be ad­hered to if a sign is on pri­vate prop­erty.

Act­ing chief ex­ec­u­tive David Rolfe says ‘‘coun­cil of­fi­cers have iden­ti­fied there may be some sig­nage that does not com­ply with coun­cil by­laws or Elec­toral Act [ reg­u­la­tions] with re­gard to size and lo­ca­tion’’.

Dur­ing the re­cent lo­cal body elec­tions about 20 signs were taken down for non-com­pli­ance.

Coun­cil of­fi­cers are in the process of look­ing into Mr Faafoi’s plac­ards, but would not say which ones.

Mr Faafoi’s lo­cal rep­re­sen­ta­tive Shane La’ulu has agreed to re­move any of­fend­ing sig­nage.

‘‘We will com­ply, we’re just get­ting clar­i­fi­ca­tion over some now,’’ Mr La’ulu said last week. Lo­cal res­i­dents were happy to erect elec­tion hoard­ings in their front yards and on the sides of their houses, he said.

When asked about the cost of each sign, he was un­sure, but said it would be in­cluded in the elec­tion re­turns filed af­ter the by-elec­tion on Novem­ber 20.

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