New Bay as­so­ci­a­tion?

Kapi-Mana News - - FRONT PAGE - By KRIS DANDO

A new res­i­dents’ as­so­ci­a­tion is in the works for Ti­tahi Bay.

Last week, Mana MP Kris Faafoi waded into the de­bate over the in­clu­sive­ness and trans­parency is­sues that are plagu­ing Ti­tahi Bay Res­i­dents As­so­ci­a­tion.

He called the re­cent de­ci­sion by the res­i­dents’ as­so­ci­a­tion to ex­clude Porirua deputy mayor ’Ana Cof­fey – and some other Bay res­i­dents – as petty and small­minded, and he is now help­ing to set up another or­gan­i­sa­tion.

‘‘My feel­ing is that peo­ple have ig­nored them [ the ex­ist­ing res­i­dents’ as­so­ci­a­tion] be­cause of the trou­ble they make. It makes them ir­rel­e­vant.

‘‘But enough peo­ple out there ob­vi­ously want an or­gan­i­sa­tion that is pro-ac­tive and pos­i­tive in the com­mu­nity, with­out be­ing con­tro­ver­sial. This has come to a head out of pure frus­tra­tion.’’

Mr Faafoi, a Bay res­i­dent, said a free web­site for the new group had been of­fered, and the sub­urb’s RSA could po­ten­tially host the first meet­ing.

Those two de­vel­op­ments have re­ceived a lot of praise on Face­book, al­though Mr Faafoi has been chal­lenged over his in­volve­ment.

For­mer res­i­dents’ as­so­ci­a­tion mem­ber Peter Wind­sor said:

‘‘You [Mr Faafoi] should stick to main­stream pol­i­tics and not at­tempt to di­vide a com­mu­nity.’’

Re­spond­ing to com­ments from Porirua mayor Nick Leggett that the as­so­ci­a­tion did not ef­fec­tively rep­re­sent the peo­ple of the Bay, the res­i­dents’ as­so­ci­a­tion sec­re­tary, Moana Hil­liard, said it was not a closed shop.

She made no apolo­gies for po­ten­tial mem­bers fac­ing a for­mal process and rules to be­come a mem­ber.

‘‘The mayor can choose not to recog­nise us if he wishes.

‘‘We have never claimed to rep­re­sent the Ti­tahi Bay com­mu­nity per se.

‘‘We do, how­ever, sup­port and ad­vo­cate for mat­ters which al­ready have a com­mu­nity man­date through the Vil­lage Plan, 2005, as well as other is­sues that im­pact on par­tic­u­lar sec­tors of the com­mu­nity.’’

Mr Leggett said it was sad the Ti­tahi Bay Res­i­dents As­so­ci­a­tion was so neg­a­tive, and that its ‘‘his­tor­i­cal, po­lit­i­cal fights and de­sire to at­tack the coun­cil’’ was not rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the wider Bay res­i­dents’ feel­ings.

He said he had been pub­licly, pri­vately and per­son­ally attacked over this is­sue, and re­fused to with­draw any com­ments.

It was im­por­tant the as­so­ci­a­tion came clean about how much it had in its bank ac­count, and how much it had spent, Mr Leggett said.

‘‘The feed­back that Kris and I have is that Ti­tahi Bay needs an open, demo­cratic res­i­dents’ group that truly rep­re­sents the as­pi­ra­tions of the com­mu­nity,’’ Mr Leggett said.

‘‘Sev­eral peo­ple have put their hands up to be in­volved.’’

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