Kapiti Observer : January 17th 2013
6 KAPITI OBSERVER, JANUARY 17, 2013 OPINION Delivered to 25,261 homes in Pukerua Bay, Paekakariki, Raumati, Paraparaumu, Waikanae, Te Horo and Otaki Find us at: www.kapitiobserver.co.nz www.facebook.com/kapitiobserver Ph: 298 5019 Fax: 298 2073 PO Box 110 Paraparaumu Media House 159 Rimu Rd Paraparaumu Manager/ Advertising Manager Gay Elliot email@example.com Editor Randall Walker firstname.lastname@example.org For News: Joel Maxwell email@example.com Ben Strang firstname.lastname@example.org Talia Carlisle email@example.com Classified Advertising Photo Orders Karen Newell firstname.lastname@example.org Ph: 298 5019 4672276AD For Advertising Russell Woodley email@example.com Tonia Wright firstname.lastname@example.org IS NOW OFFERING NO PAYMENTS & NO INTEREST UNTIL MAY 2014 ON ALL TREATMENTS OVER $300!* Practices nationwide | lumino.co.nz *Q Card lending criteria, fees, terms and conditions apply. Waikanae 108 Main Road Ph: 04 293 3392 Otaki 31 Dunstan Street Ph: 06 364 8071 4447698AB 4592463AE COLD HOUSE? Insulate with us over Summer* and you could qualify for an ENERGYWISE TM subsidy of up to $1300* IGLOO INSULATION will also give you an extra 10% OFF our final quoted price CALL NOW 04 298 8995 to book an assessment and quote *CONDITIONS APPLY www.igloo-insulation.co.nz Wilson's 'noise' wishful thinking Kapiti regional councillor Nigel Wilson certainly knows how to win friends and influence people when he calls Hutt City councillors crazy and says Hutt Valley people are not from the sane world (Super-city poll a certainty, January 10). He demonstrates superbly why the Greater Wellington Regional Council is so difficult to deal with. Cr Wilson s prediction that a poll on a super city is a stone cold certainty is wishful thinking. In order to progress a local government reorganisation idea to a proposal and a poll, its proponents need to demonstrate that the proposed changes have significant community support. In Lower Hutt, several surveys have found that a super-city has at best 10 per cent support. It has even less in Upper Hutt and virtually none in the Wairarapa. I have seen no evidence that a super-city even has majority support in Wellington City. Irrespective of the amount of noise generated by Cr Wilson and his cohorts, such levels of support are unlikely to persuade the Local Government Commission to approve a super- city proposal for consultation. Max Shierlaw Hutt City Councillor More 'takeover' than amalgamation Democracy demands that it s up to the voters of Kapiti to decide whether they want to be part of a super-city, not Nigel Wilson s regional council working party. The status quo for Kapiti must be still an option, as it s a community s democratic right to be free and independent if it elects to be so. Meantime, it s up to the promoters of change to convince us they have a good case but so far they have failed to do. However, as our existing two- tier system seems to work very well, there seems no reason to change it. Let s not be naive, this wouldn t be an amalgamation; it would be a takeover by Wellington, who has everything to gain and we everything to lose. One thing we can be absolutely certain of is Kapiti ratepayers won t see a rate reduction. Besides losing our individuality, we would become closely associated with Wellington and its dodgy weather, prejudicing our reputation for having an equable climate -- our greatest natural asset. Sprawling Auckland with its contiguous municipalities was one thing, but small, compact Wellington with its regional towns and com- munities separated by harbours, mountain ranges and extensive grazing lands is quite different. Murray Eggers Paraparaumu A sledge hammer to crack a nut It s interesting to read that, in the wake of the proposed expressway, Kapiti is in danger of becoming a new industrial centre for the wider Wellington region (Expressway could pave way for business growth, January 10). This will certainly change the character of the Kapiti Coast, as much as the proposed expressway tearing through its middle. True, we need an alternative link road but we seem to be using a sledge hammer to crack a nut. It is interesting that (as most do) your photograph shows the expressway running peacefully through a rural setting with lots of open land on either side, when in reality the majority of it is through suburban housing and other built up areas with little space for beautification . It will be not only a permanent eyesore but a continual source of noise and pollution. The statement that there will be cost savings... maybe not anything that people will notice... ishardly reassuring. Petrol is certainly not an infinite resource and its price is increasing rapidly, which will mean more expensive goods if brought by road. This Government has not been noted for its sensible decisions in the past so this one should be no surprise. All of us need to be aware of the wider ramifications for our area if the expressway proceeds. Jo Patten Paraparaumu NZ cricket has been worse I must congratulate Joseph Romanos on his story on the New Zealand cricket team making only 45 against South Africa (Black Caps simply outgunned this time, January 10). His story had depth and was honest and correct. Why blame coaches when teams do not perform on certain days, when it s the team on the field who play the game not someone sitting in the grandstand watching. I as a kid remember New Zealand only making 26, but they have come a long way since. KB Swain Levin Incoming CEO a fan of outsourcing TALKING POLITICS GORDON CAMPBELL According to free market advocates, the contracting out of central and local government services to private providers is all but bound to pro- duce better and less costly out- comes. Reality can differ though, as the Novopay teacher pay fiasco indicates. Certainly, there was time aplenty to get it right. Australian firm Talent2 won the Novopay contract back in 2005. The new system was budgeted to cost $189.5 million over 10 years, and in effect, a four year run-in time existed for the project proper. Evidently, all of this was to no avail. Figures released in the New Year show that so far 7899 people had been underpaid or not at all, 6000 were overpaid and 581 paid on behalf of schools for which they did not work. Not counting the costs involved in trying to cope with the error-plagued system, schools have had to advance $560,000 from their own reserves to cover the mistakes. To date, neither Talent2 nor the government have indicated what percentage of error with the new system would be regarded as inevitable, or acceptable. Wellingtonians will have the Novopay example fresh in their minds as they contemplate the arrival of Kevin Lavery, the city council s new chief executive. Lavery, a 52-year-old English- man of Irish descent, was for- merly chief executive of Cornwall Council in England. When headhunted, Lavery was on the losing end of a local dispute over Cornwall Council s plans to privatise some services, including IT and libraries. In fact, the Wellington oppor- tunity arose the day after Corn- wall Council had voted to remove its Conservative leader, Alec Robertson. He had been Lavery s chief ally in the battle over plans to create a joint venture with a private company to provide coun- cil services. I wasn t really looking to leave, it kind of came out of the blue, Lavery told the Cornwall media a couple of weeks ago. If I m honest about it, I got an approach from a headhunter the day after Alec Robertson was ousted, so probably they caught me at a time that I was feeling a bit unsettled. Since his appointment as Wel- lington s chief executive was announced in mid-December, Lavery has been at pains to stress that many of the controversial initiatives in his old job had been virtually forced on him by cut- backs in council funding initiated by the Conservative-led govern- ment of British Prime Minister David Cameron. It s not me trying to be theo- logical about outsourcing, Lavery told the Dominion Post. For some, such a comment would be far more re-assuring if Lavery hadn t published a book in 1999 called Smart Contracting for Local Government Services that zealously sings the praises of com- petitive outsourcing. In practice, any appetite that Lavery may have for contracting out council services -- with all the related job implications for council staff -- may have been less crucial to him landing the job in Welling- ton than some of his other skills. On his arrival in Cornwall in 2008, Lavery was thrown in the deep end of creating and manag- ing a new unitary authority that replaced the former Cornwall County Council and six district councils. It seems reasonable to expect a super city amalgamation (and associated job cuts) could be on Lavery s agenda here, as well.
January 14th 2013
January 21st 2013