WCC decision to back out gets quiet response
A Wellington City Council decision to renege on a deal with Porirua to expand their joint waste management activities has been met with a muted response.
The two councils had been preparing to extend co-operation on sewage and landfill operations to cover all solid waste, including rubbish collection, through a council- controlled trading organisation.
On June 27, Wellington City Council voted to stop work on the proposal, leaving Porirua with the lion’s share of the bill for work to date, which included $250,000 of consultants’ fees, as well as much more in- house work.
However, when the two councils’ wastewater treatment plant and landfill joint committee met last Tuesday at Porirua City Council to consider a grumpy resolution noting that work on the joint venture had stopped, it was watered down to a request for information.
Wellington council was asked to report back to the committee by November 7, ‘‘to clarify a way forward to enable enhanced cooperation between the two councils’’.
Leggett ’ Porirua Mayor Nick Wellington representative Ngaire Best said her council had been very clear that what was being stopped was work on the proposed council- controlled trading organisation, and not any other concept that might develop from the planned joint venture.
Porirua Mayor Nick Leggett wondered why things take so long.
‘‘ It concerns me that the wheels turn slowly and residents get frustrated.
‘‘We have got to sharpen up, to be honest.’’
Ms Best said she hoped the November 7 deadline was the worst case scenario.
‘‘That is the maximum rather than the minimum.
‘‘We hope that we [the committee] or Porirua City Council will receive a reply at a much earlier date.’’
After the meeting committee chairman Tim Sheppard said the fees had been divided between Deloittes, who prepared the report, and Simpson’s, who reviewed it.
It was impossible to separate how much had been spent on the council-controlled organisation proposal, because that had always been an assumption underlying the work.