New res­i­dents’ group open to all

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS - By KRIS DANDO

The new as­so­ci­a­tion rep­re­sent­ing res­i­dents in Can­nons Creek might be a mouth­ful to pro­nounce, but it has been cre­ated with the best in­ten­tions, says its inaugural chair­man.

Aporo Joyce, the sub­urb’s com­mu­nity con­sta­ble from 1981 to 1993, says the Can­nons Creek Res­i­dents’ and Ratepay­ers’ and State Ten­ants’ As­so­ci­a­tion has only held a hand­ful of meet­ings but is al­ready gath­er­ing mo­men­tum.

The ‘‘state ten­ants’’ part of the ti­tle was only added re­cently be­cause the com­mit­tee felt it was im­por­tant Hous­ing New Zealand res­i­dents had as much in­put as ratepay­ers.

‘‘[HNZ ten­ants are] a sub­stan­tial num­ber of peo­ple and they need some sort of for­mal rep­re­sen­ta­tion.’’

Al­though he lives in Tawa, Mr Joyce says he will al­ways have an affin­ity with Can­nons Creek.

The new as­so­ci­a­tion came about at the be­gin­ning of this year when Mr Joyce went to the Creek to give the com­mu­nity po­lice base a boost.

Af­ter talk­ing to res­i­dents and busi­ness own­ers, he saw the need for an or­gan­ised group to speak for them.

There was a pre­vi­ous as­so­ci­a­tion, the East­ern Porirua Res­i­dents’ As­so­ci­a­tion but ‘‘it’s fallen away and noth­ing has been ac­tive for some time’’, says Mr Joyce.

‘‘Through word-of-mouth we spoke to a few peo­ple and there was enough out there to say ‘let’s have a go’.’’

The group has just eight mem­bers, but since there are funds with Porirua City

Aporo Joyce is fa­mil­iar with what makes Can­nons Creek tick af­ter years on the beat in the sub­urb. He wants res­i­dents to stand up and have more of a say about what is needed in their com­mu­nity. Coun­cil’s vil­lage plan­ning bud­get to spend on Can­nons Creek, he is op­ti­mistic more res­i­dents will join.

The group meets ev­ery third week but has not yet pri­ori­tised any projects.

Mr Joyce be­lieves it is pru­dent to wait un­til the new coun­cil is set­tled, and iden­tify which east­ern ward coun­cil­lors they should ap­proach for guid­ance and sup­port.

He be­lieves is­sues such as restor­ing the shop­ping cen­tre, traf­fic, graf­fiti and van­dal­ism, li­cens­ing laws and com­mu­nity safety will be at the fore­front.

‘‘What’s im­por­tant is that we go to the coun­cil with so­lu­tions, as well as the prob­lems.

‘‘I don’t want us to be one of those groups that just whines about what’s wrong, with­out of­fer­ing an­swers as well.

‘‘So that’s why we need new think­ing, and to en­cour­age lo­cal res­i­dents and ratepay­ers to join us.’’

PCC plan­ner Ian Bar­low says the new or­gan­i­sa­tion pro­vides the coun­cil with an­other vi­tal link to the com­mu­nity.

While day-to-day op­er­a­tions such as sewage, rub­bish col­lec­tion and wa­ter will be un­der­taken by the coun­cil, a res­i­dents’ as­so­ci­a­tion can alert the coun­cil to things to en­hance the area.

‘‘A lot of de­ci­sions are not made un­less peo­ple jump up and down, and we’re not nec­es­sar­ily the ex­perts on what is needed to make a neigh­bour­hood or sub­urb bet­ter for lo­cals.

‘‘A group that can pull a com­mu­nity to­gether, get in­for­ma­tion out of them through meet­ings or events, and put it to coun­cil in a sen­si­ble way, is go­ing to achieve things,’’ Mr Bar­low says.

New be­gin­nings:

To par­tic­i­pate in the Can­nons Creek as­so­ci­a­tion or for more in­for­ma­tion, call Mr Joyce on 232 5786.

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