VOT­ING DILEMMA

Matamata Chronicle - - News -

South Waikato will re­main in three wards for another six years – a de­ci­sion made with­out the vote of Terry Mag­ill.

The Ti­rau Ward coun­cil­lor had orig­i­nally ac­cepted a le­gal opin­ion that he re­move him­self from the vote af­ter declar­ing a strong bias when he made a sub­mis­sion on the is­sue.

He then re­jected that re­quest, turn­ing up to cham­bers on Thurs­day morn­ing ex­pect­ing to vote.

But be­fore hear­ings even got un­der way, Mayor Neil Sin­clair sug­gested that the en­tire re­view de­ci­sion be handed over to the Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Com­mis­sion be­cause of Mag­ill’s ‘‘con­flict of in­ter­est’’.

‘‘Coun­cil­lor Mag­ill can de­cide to sit here and we will be open to le­gal chal­lenge and I’m firmly of the opin­ion that that le­gal chal­lenge will take place.’’

Sin­clair could not get past the fourth point of Mag­ill’s sub­mis­sion which had high­lighted the fact that a num­ber of Ti­rau res­i­dents had ques­tioned whether the com­plete loss of democ­racy would war­rant a move to the Mata­mataPi­ako dis­trict.

‘‘I be­lieve that be­cause the Ti­rau com­mu­nity for many years have had those feel­ings, and thought ‘hey we’re not too sure if we want [suc­ces­sion]’... we ac­tu­ally get the Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Com­mis­sion who set up those bound­aries orig­i­nally to re­solve it.’’

Coun­cil­lor Marin Glu­cina said he thought the mayor was ‘‘go­ing off on a tan­gent’’.

‘‘We don’t hand this off to some other out­fit...We don’t have a con­flict be­cause we haven’t even had a hear­ing.’’

Mag­ill said that he was will­ing to sit the vote out, if it was the ‘‘will’’ of the coun­cil. An in­for­mal vote amongst coun­cil­lors saw this hap­pen.

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