In defence of the canopies
The editorial (July 23) bemoaned the state of the town centre canopies and asked ‘‘why wait?’’ at the thought that they should come down.
I remember when they weren’t there. During winter, there was not a worse shopping experience in all of the Wellington region.
Thank God the council pulled its head out of the sand and ‘‘revitalised’’ a failing town centre by protecting the winter trade.
Will the new Streamside Plaza have canopies to protect winter trade, as the current canopies do. One can only hope so.
More changes to something that isn’t broken?
Now Porirua councillors want to take water supply out of the hands of elected representatives and contract manage the water supply to the corporate board council controlled organisation model (CCO).
Add this move to Fran Wilde’s desire to see universal water metering. Not to mention, one of the Wellington mayoral candidate’s leaked emails stated his desire to ‘‘decimate the CCO setup’’.
I feel a water privatisation theory taking root.
Wasn’t Wilde the mayor of Wellington when it privatised the community-owned electricity company Capital Power without a mandate?
These moves come just weeks before an election and despite the fact that security of water supply is Porirua ratepayers’ greatest priority ( Kapi-Mana News, August 6).
My water supply is currently so consistent that it continued when the storm two months ago took out my power for four days.
But surely the main reason we shouldn’t be advancing this folly is a council report in December 2012 telling us the proposal will cost us more for supply and that there is a ‘‘significant risk of a drop in service levels’’. ( KapiMana News May 14.)
What I don’t understand is why this council is hellbent on going regional for no demonstrable benefit. Is there something in the water Porirua City councillors are drinking? Council money and be run more efficiently. Nowhere in the available documentation did it show when or how it would save money or be a sound financial investment.
In fact, in year one it will cost ratepayers $120,000 to purchase a share in Capacity and potential redundancy payments of $87,000.
The annual Capacity fee of $400,000 has been reduced in the first year, but not in year two onwards.
Who knows what increases will be made by Capacity after year two? It could be as incremental as a tap.
It may be important for readers to understand that Porirua city Council already has an excellent water management system.
An example of this is the $100,000 water rebate in 2009/10.
Furthermore, council staff have local knowledge about where all the troubled areas are during a flood or crisis, such as the recent storm.
Capacity has yet to achieve such outcomes or show the retaining of original Wellington City Council staff from five years ago.
It is likely that Capacity and Wellington City Council would benefit from the Porirua City Council staff, rather than the other way around.
As far as the potential loss of local jobs being ‘‘protectionist rubbish’’, who better to protect than our Porirua workers who contribute to the local economy and do a great job for our city?
So if this proposal does not tick the savings, efficiency, profitability or knowledge check list, why even go there?
The answer is because of amalgamation – ‘‘super city’’.
This is one of the things that council can move on before the residents have had a say about amalgamation.
Having all but one councillor support this proposal may be viewed as a sign as to where the present councillors sit on the issue.
Why else would they have voted this way?
The local elections are coming up, so choose wisely who you want to represent your views and shape the future of Porirua.