$250k in re­ports now gone to waste?

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS - By KRIS DANDO

A joint waste man­age­ment ven­ture be­tween Porirua and Welling­ton cities has ‘‘ gone down the gur­gler’’, wast­ing $ 250,000 in con­sul­tants’ fees, claims a Porirua City coun­cil­lor.

Welling­ton City Coun­cil is re-as­sess­ing its in­volve­ment in coun­cil con­trolled or­gan­i­sa­tions ( CCOs) such as Welling­ton Zoo Trust, Basin Re­serve Trust and in waste man­age­ment. A re­view of the two coun­cils’ manag­ing waste ac­tiv­i­ties to­gether is part of this.

Tim Shep­pard says the joint com­mit­tee that over­sees the waste­water treat­ment plant in Ti­tahi Bay and Spicer Land­fill, which he co- chairs with Ngaire Best from WCC, pro­posed that all solid waste op­er­a­tions in the two cities be jointly man­aged. This went into both coun­cils’ draft long-term plans, but WCC de­ferred the pro­posal on June 12.

This comes af­ter an ex­pert re­port from Deloitte cost­ing $200,000 and a peer re­view for $50,000. Mr Shep­pard says the cost to the Porirua ratepayer is about two-thirds of that to­tal bill. ‘‘I bet a dol­lar to a dog turd that Welling­ton City Coun­cil didn’t con­sider for a minute that big loss for Porirua.’’

Mr Shep­pard says the de­ci­sion to re­ject the pro­posal by WCC’s Strat­egy and Pol­icy Com­mit­tee on June 27 was made by politi­cians, against ad­vice of their coun­cil of­fi­cers.

There was no briefing from WCC to their Porirua coun­ter­parts.

Ms Best, how­ever, says noth­ing has been de­cided and it is a de­fer­ral as they in­ves­ti­gate the fu­ture of CCOs in the con­text of re­gional gov­er­nance. They will have a clearer idea in the com­ing weeks.

‘‘We have said there should be no more work on this [joint ven­ture] at the mo­ment, but it has not been re­jected. We just need to see where it sits in the big pic­ture, there are a num­ber of other pieces of work go­ing on right now that will af­fect it. Tim is in­cor­rect and it’s pre­ma­ture for him to be mak­ing state­ments like he has.’’

Ms Best con­ceded some of their col­leagues were not in favour of CCOs and joint ven­tures, but she said there was a ra­tio­nale for them. The last thing she wanted was for the two coun­cils to be ‘‘at war’’.

PCC chief ex­ec­u­tive Gary Simp­son is to seek clar­i­fi­ca­tion from WCC on its com­mit­ment to the ex­ist­ing joint ven­ture.

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