MAT TALKS

The Northland Age - - Sport -

Failed on prin­ci­ple

At a Far North District Coun­cil au­dit and fi­nance meet­ing in April 27, a de­ci­sion was made to play the pre­sea­son Blues vs Chiefs pre-sea­son Su­per Rugby game at Kaikohe in Fe­bru­ary next year. This is dis­ap­point­ing, par­tic­u­larly when the Man­gonui Rugby Union was never told by coun­cil or the North­land Rugby Union to put up a case to host the match.

The item was not even on the orig­i­nal agenda. This was sup­ported by chair­man Cr John Vu­j­cich when I made con­tact two days be­fore the meet­ing. Un­known was that a sup­ple­men­tary pa­per on the rugby game was dis­trib­uted on the day, sup­ported by a large num­ber of Kaikohe rugby mem­bers.

What is an­noy­ing is this de­ci­sion should have been made at a full emer­gency coun­cil meet­ing. Au­dit and fi­nance com­ment would be be­cause of time a de­ci­sion had to be made. Vu­j­cich says Kaikohe stacked up bet­ter fi­nan­cially and that the max­i­mum cost to coun­cil would be $59,568.

He is un­aware that Arnold Rae Park has vir­tu­ally the full in­fra­struc­ture for provin­cial games that would cost the ratepayer less than half the es­ti­mated cost. Look, I am happy Kaikohe has got the nod es­pe­cially for Ch­eryl Waaka (nee Smith) and her hard-work­ing com­mit­tee. But it’s the prin­ci­ple and cour­tesy where this district coun­cil has failed.

North­land were an ab­so­lute em­bar­rass­ment in their heavy 71-28 deficit to Waikato last Satur­day. Play­ing at home, they were torn apart in the sec­ond half with lit­tle re­sis­tance. The prob­lem with North­land is that they have a weak bench, play­ers that would strug­gle just to make a club side. Sure they have qual­i­fied for a semi-fi­nal and it could be Waikato again in Hamil­ton. In­juries to key play­ers are a worry and you have to sym­pa­thise with coach Der­ren Wit­combe on his next move. There isn’t one! Look­ing ahead, Bay of Plenty away on Satur­day is not go­ing to be easy. They are a good side with en­cour­ag­ing re­sults and North­land could end up be­ing blown away again.

In my last re­port I men­tioned the limbo in Te Oneroa a Tohe Board is in. The cost to the tax payer is not $90,000 as men­tioned but $950,000.

And, no com­ment from As­so­ciate Im­mi­gra­tion Min­is­ter Kris Faa’foi re­gard­ing the de­por­ta­tion of Switzer Home res­i­den­tial care worker Juliet Gar­cia. It’s not go­ing to come.

We now as a com­mu­nity need to move into ac­tion. More on this later.

And that’s how Mat sees it.

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