Former Kāpiti Mayor Iride McCloy is appealing to the present Mayor and Council to abandon plans to force a large Maori family from their home in central Paraparaumu.
Mayor K Gurunathan and Council want to sell the house and use the money to reduce Council debts.
But Iride McCloy says: “Housing has been one of Councils priorities in addressing the special needs of the Kapiti Community — and this inexcusable fiasco is an
indictment on the credibility of the Council.
Young family being forced out
“A young family with four children, one with special needs, have been asked to vacate their house which is owned by the KCDC.
“The family also wish to support a parent who suffers from serious health issues .Homeless to avoid more stress and pressure!”
Rent increased — now their home is up for sale
Ms McCloy adds: “The home that the family is living in has been placed on the market for sale. This follows a significant rent increase for the family from the KCDC.
“The Council claimed that depreciation on the house was the reason for this increase! ”
Mayor Gurunathan chastised
Ms McCloy says Mayor Krisnansay Gurunathan has written several articles on social housing and claimed the KCDC was doing everything possible to address poverty and homelessness in Kapiti.
This family has been offered a much smaller house in Porirua, she says, but the distance from family and friends who are trying to support the family will exacerbate the hardship that they
are already struggling with.
“This is a family who have had four generations living in Kapiti,” she says.
Instructions from Council
The former Mayor says the issue has been ongoing, and due to pressure the KCDC has instructed the family that they may remain until March when the property will be placed on the housing market.
She says the public have read of the KCDC debacle with the Council voting to borrow to address the debt problem and servicing existing projects.
(This plan was retracted last week).
Ms McCloy says: “With the 25% plus of ratepayers’ funds used to pay to the staff one could wish that the KCDC elected members would have sufficient financial acumen to understand the financials that are increasing the KCDC debt.
“KCDC has long been one of the top three most indebted councils in NZ. And one does not need to be a rocket scientist to come to the conclusion that, in desperation to address the shortfalls in the finances, KCDC are trying to sell off (some of) the community’s social houses.
Social housing missing out
“Whilst we can acknowledge that the Mayor Gurunathan has had an extensive career in journalism, we can at least expect that there would be some financial business expertise with transparency and accountability from the Mayor, with the elected members who are using ratepayers’ monies from the social housing to service debts.
“These appalling transactions are at the expense of the people who are in our community and require housing and support whilst on the poverty line!
“One must now consider the last recourse of action available, and that may call for a protest march for all of Kapiti to come out in support to address the social needs of our community.”
Note: The Mayor and KCDC are being asked to comment.