Coun­cil­lor in­ves­ti­gated

Otago Daily Times - - GENERAL -

DUNEDIN: An Otago re­gional coun­cil­lor is be­ing in­ves­ti­gated by the coun­cil for com­pli­ance breaches re­lat­ing to farm­ing.

This week RNZ learned Otago Re­gional Coun­cil was in­ves­ti­gat­ing one of its own coun­cil­lors over reg­u­la­tory is­sues.

Af­ter RNZ made ini­tial in­quiries, Waik­ouaiti sheep and beef farmer, and first­term re­gional coun­cil­lor, Andrew Noone came for­ward to say he was at the cen­tre of the in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

He told RNZ he did not want a cloud of sus­pi­cion hang­ing over other farm­ers sit­ting on the coun­cil.

‘‘It’s me who has a com­ pli­ance is­sue associated with farm­ing ac­tiv­ity,’’ he said.

‘‘It’s cur­rently un­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion and I can’t say any­thing fur­ther un­til that in­ves­ti­ga­tion is con­cluded.’’

He would not com­ment on the specifics of the breach while the in­ves­ti­ga­tion was on­go­ing.

The Otago Daily Times also con­tacted Mr Noone last night, but — other than con­firm­ing the is­sue dated back to mid­win­ter — he would only re­it­er­ate his ear­lier com­ments to RNZ.

The Otago Re­gional Coun­cil would also not com­ment on specifics.

‘‘We are in­ves­ti­gat­ing an in­ci­dent, but as with any in­ves­ti­ga­tion it is in­ap­pro­pri­ate to com­ment at this stage,’’ coun­cil chief ex­ec­u­tive Sarah Gard­ner said in a state­ment yes­ter­day morn­ing.

Mr Noone sat on the Dunedin City Coun­cil for al­most two decades be­fore stand­ing for the re­gional coun­cil at the last elec­tion.

Be­fore tak­ing a seat on the city coun­cil, he sat on the Waik­ouaiti Coast Com­mu­nity Board for six years. — RNZ

Andrew Noone

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