Residents’ association looking prosperous
Titahi Bay Residents Association’s sizeable bank account was in the spotlight during a fractious annual meeting on Saturday.
The association, which has been criticised for a lack of transparency and inclusiveness, showed off its financial health with a statement that disclosed $48,846 in four bank accounts and a term deposit.
Graeme Ebbett was re-elected unopposed as association chairman, with David Stanley the deputy chairman.
He said $12,858 was given to the residents’ association after the Titahi Bay Residents’ and Ratepayers’ Progressive Association folded eight years ago.
‘‘As you can see we are in a strong position,’’ he said. ‘‘Everything is disclosed and we have nothing to hide. We have charitable status and meet IRD criteria.’’
One of the 30-strong audience asked if some of the former progressive association’s money should be earmarked towards a reprinting of a book on Titahi Bay.
Mr Ebbett said that money had never been earmarked for any project, and it had not been spent unjustifiably.
‘‘It is up to the discretion of our committee where that money will be spent. We have grown it from $9326 to what we have today.’’
The two-hour meeting, which included discussion afterwards about the association’s policies, often erupted into heated arguments.
Association member Wendy Leary said Kapi- Mana News was in possession of ‘‘defamatory documents, spread around by Porirua City councillors’’, and there were accusations that the financial position of the association led to jealousy within the Bay community.
Porirua deputy mayor ’ Ana Coffey questioned whether the committee was representative of the Bay and whether a review should be done of the association’s constitution.
She pointed out that four days’ notice was given of meeting, contravening the association’s 21-day rule.
‘‘People have to jump through hoops. I question the process and how the [association’s] committee holds the power to accept new members. It’s not fair and inclusive,’’ she said.
Titahi Bay resident Eleanor Cater asked whether the appli- cation for membership, which states ‘‘ I support its aims, objectives, current policies and agree to abide by its rules’’, was too restrictive.
‘‘What if you don’t agree with the policies and rules?’’ she asked.
‘‘Don’t join,’’ was Mr Ebbett’s reply.
Subscriptions to the association would remain at $10, the new committee resolved.
Mr Ebbett reported that membership had increased to 60. Highlights for the association in 2013 included joint sponsorship with Lions of the suburb’s reunion, Moana Court staying as social housing and putting the brakes on the demolition of Porirua Little Theatre’s building.
Disappointments included the suburb’s community constable being based elsewhere, the possible removal of CCTV in the Whitehouse Rd shops and the loss of Porirua News, which ‘‘provided balance with KapiMana News in local news coverage’’.
Newcomers on the sevenstrong committee — who were nominated prior to the meeting — were Pat Kelly and Michelle Collins, husband and daughter of former Porirua deputy mayor Liz Kelly.
Financial members of the association, Mel Branch and Jennifer Cater, put their names forward for the committee, but were unsuccessful.
The committee resolved to a review of its constitution, but it would be done internally.
Chairman: Graeme Ebbett has been re-elected as head of the Titahi Bay Residents Association.