I have no confidence that Tauranga City Council, as an organisation, has the ability to successfully carry out the proposed upgrade to Totara St, or that it will be done within budget and on time.
Ratepayers have had bitter experiences with the recent Welcome Bay, Greerton, Phoenix car park, Harrington St car park and Durham St improvements.
All of these were, in my view, complete disasters.
Now we are going to let the council carry out another major project, right next to New Zealand's largest export port.
I cannot believe that we have allowed this to happen.
Statutory manager better option
It is disappointing, from my perspective, that the independent reviewers have recommended that a Crown manager and observer, as reported (News, November 17) be appointed to help the current council.
This decision just adds a further layer of cost upon long-suffering Tauranga ratepayers being on top of the current four independent reviewers and now if a Crown manager and observer are put in place we could well be looking at in excess of $500,000 a year.
The reviewers, in their report, refer to the elected members' internal turmoil effectively preventing the council from governing appropriately.
Given this, a better outcome, in my opinion, would for the current council to be dismissed and a statutory manager be appointed and this should result in a significantly better outcome, for ratepayers, along with the savings of having to not pay the average $100,000 plus for each of the 11 elected representatives.
It is not the fault of the ratepayers that the current councillors have, in my view, become so dysfunctional so why should we then have to pay the cost of trying to remedy the situation.
I believe it is time for the Government to make the difficult decision and appoint a statutory manager.
I was riding a newly minted track called forest loop in the Redwoods in Rotorua when I came across a large fallen tree on which someone had scribbled, in permanent marker, "Shame".
As I rode on, I wondered about the anonymous person who degraded the track to make their political statement.
I can only assume they are decrying the shame that the tree had been felled to make the track.
I didn't notice any similar sentiment expressed for the millions of smaller plants and insects that had met a similar fate in the creation of this track.
I didn't note any sign at the start of this track protesting its construction.
I did reflect on the fact that the pen used in this protest will have caused significant environmental damage in its creation and transport to the hands of the protester.
I wondered if the protester had walked or ridden the track that included the felled tree or had pushed through the bush to make their protest, destroying seedlings and small insects to get there.
So, I was left wondering if this person who chose to utilise the environmental damage of progress to make their simple protest is a hypocrite or simply too stupid to realise that the only way they got to make their protest was utilising the very thing they were protesting about - progress.
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