The Kapiti Independent says ‘We got it wrong — we said Jenny Rowan was sacked by the Lake Horowhenua Domain Board — but we now know she resigned.
‘We are happy to put the record straight.’
Our Horowhenua correspondent Veronica Harrod says, whatever way you look at it, Rowan was in fact pushed from the chair of the Lake Horowhenua Domain Board — after just four months.
The move by the two-term Kapiti Mayor (2007-13), one of Kapiti’s most respected politicians, came after Lake Horowhenua Trust registered a vote of no confidence in her.
The minutes of a special meeting held by the Trust on 12 June state Iwi representatives on the board have no confidence in Ms Rowan because, “actions and statements made by [Ms] Rowan…is undermining the ability of the Trustees to carry out their responsibilities on behalf of beneficial owners.”
Ms Rowan and Mayor Feyen trespassed
The Trust also trespassed Ms Rowan and Horowhenua District Council Mayor Michael Feyen from Lake Trust land including Horowhenua Lake Domain but Mr Feyen said, “At this stage I have not been formally trespassed.”
On Ms Rowan’s removal, Mr Feyen said, “I find it sad she has gone. She had a lot to offer and was independent. I also understand a number of [legal] proceedings are taking place that may have an impact on the issue.”
Iwi representation on the Domain Board has expired and new elections have not been held for seven years. Iwi representatives on the Board include Marokopa Wiremu-Matakatea, Jon Proctor and Rob Warrington who are also Lake Trustees.
Under the Reserves Act board members cannot be on the Domain Board for a term, “exceeding 7 years.”
No voting for seven years
At the February meeting of the Domain Board meeting, two public submissions were made on the issue of Iwi representation with Peter Heremaia stating, “Tribal representatives…should be elected by the MuaUpoko people, which had not happened over the last seven or eight years.
The full representation of the Tribe also needed to be adhered to, which was four members, not three.”
Mayor Feyen, who is a Board member said, “The sooner Iwi representation is sorted out the better.”
In the four months she was in the role, Ms Rowan, who represents the Board on behalf of the Director General of the Department of Conservation, delivered an historic first when she made a submission in May on the Council’s first 20 year Long Term Plan.
She said Lake Horowhenua is, “on private land – it should not be seen in this century to be the local sewer for everyone else’s rubbish and pollutants.
“We would expect the HDC to invest in educating industry and agricultural operators better on their obligations around runoff and farm management.”
She also expressed a willingness to tackle the outstanding matter of council’s continued refusal to restore Horowhenua resident Philip Taueki’s water supply and shift Domain Board meetings to another venue as Mr Taueki is trespassed from the council building where Domain Board meetings are held.
Mr Taueki’s water supply has been cut off by the council for over 18 months.