‘Deputy Chair Guy Burns Should Have more Faith in our Community’
By Mayor K Gurunathan in response to Guy Burn’s statement (below)
Councillors who voted not to entertain the Board’s recommendation to keep the pond filled over Christmas
understand the Board’s sentiments that it will be a nice look over the summer months when the Park is packed with holiday makers and visitors.
It’s a noble sentiment but not practical, financially responsible, or consistent with council’s perennial message to residents to be frugal with water.
1) Fiscal Responsibility
Mr Burns states Council “ineptitude and poor management“ and lack of “accountability on behalf (of) ratepayers money” led to council spending $85,000 over two years on maintenance.
“Yet, he wants council to continue to waste more ratepayers money by keeping the leaky pond filled over the summer. The pond leaks 108,000 litres per day!
Mr Guy has omitted to inform the community this cosmetic exercise will cost them more than $20,000.
Ratepayers may choose to see this as fiscal irresponsibility.
2) Undermines fiscal efficiency of the Park and Reserves Department
Because the water account is a closed account, the $20k cost has to be funded from Parks & Reserves operations account.
This potentially means less money in Parks & Reserves to service needs anywhere from Otaki to Paekakariki. Like less money to keep the lawns mowed in Waikanae Park or Otaki Beach…etc.
A question could be posed on why the standard of services enjoyed by other residents have to suffer because of the perceived priority that visitors to the Park must be able to enjoy a fully filled pond for a brief period.
3) Undermines council’s water conservation message.
Council has consistently promoted the water conservation message.
Continually filling a council pond which is leaking 108,000 litres per day and costing ratepayers more than $20,000 is not consistent with this long standing conservation message.
4) Money could be better spent on a new pond
The community has been invited to give their suggestions on the future of the Park through the current public consultation on the Maclean Park Management Plan. Mr Burns should have more faith in our community.
They will come up with brilliant suggestions. The $20,000 ratepayer money would be better spent on such ideas and one of these could be a new pond.
The current pond is munted why would ratepayers be happy to waste more money on it just for cosmetic reasons over the short summer period when the money could be used for a long term option.