Hits State Highway
on Kapiti Coast
By Alan Tristram
The anti- water meter campaign has taken to the public highways and byways on the Kapiti Coast with its message, as temperatures rise in the most divisive dispute to hit the Kapiti Coast District Council this year.
The ‘Ask Us First Petition’ has put up billboards on SH1 just north of the overbridge at Paraparaumu and north of Otaki at Pukehou Hill.
At last count, the number of signatures on the petition calling on the Kapiti Council to drop plans for meters was approaching 4,000.
The campaign’s organiser, Jackie Elliott, has also highlighted the fact that a KCDC-commissioned districtwide phone survey asked over 70 questions – but not one of them about water options.
In another move, Ms Elliottam is personally inviting councillors to join her on the streets with the petition form to ‘actually listen to the public.’
And she says the campaigners will also encourage the public to email Councillors to stop the water meters.
With due respect to the Kapiti News, I feel that it is essential that two letters from the 12th Oct. edition are transcribed for this website, showing the vagaries of installing water meters in Kapiti.
Water meter peril
Nelsonians had meters foisted on them in 1998 for conservation measures.
We are similar in size to Kapiti with a population of 42,000. My annual general rates in June 1997 were about $700 and included water.
In 2001, the Nelson City Council voted in a $26 million water treatment plant – identical to Auckland’s Citycare treatment plant at the Waikato Heads.
Last year, my general rates were $1,850 and $650 for water – an annual total of $2,500.
Sealords employed 2000 full and seasonal employees in the late 90s and now employs less than 1000. Talleys have said they will not process fish in Nelson City as the cost of water is too expensive.
Your CEO Patrick Dougherty was Water Services manager for Nelson City Council from 1986-08.
Our mayor, Kerry Marshall, said in March last year that we had plenty of water and to use as much as we like.
I imagine many of you in Kapiti are struggling to meet the bills – just like most of us in Nelson.
Rick Miller – Nelson
Cost of water
Since metering of Nelson’s household supply started, the annual charge has risen at least five times. The average household bill is about $700 per annum.
Nelson City also told residents the town needed a water treatment plant, voting down a call to conduct a public survey.
Pat Dougherty, Nelson Council services manager told residents the cost of the plant would be $16 million. A month later, after getting the go ahead, residents learned it would cost $26 million.
Water charges rose 20 percent last year, 15 percent this year and are due to rise 12.5 percent next year.
Chief financial officer Chris Fitchett said in the Nelson Mail the council was not making enough return from water charges and blamed the drop-off in use.
“Raising the charges again could force usage down further but it was likely people had already restricted their use as much as possible,” he said.
In Nelson, most landlords pass the water bill on to the user, their tenants.
The downside for local shop owners is people then have much less money to spend in their shops.
Mike Rodwell – Richmond, Nelson
For all you naysayers and pessimists — I hope you do not complain when you are paying for your water through the nose with water meters. Think about it! I would rather be on the POSITIVE and WINNING side than on the negative and losing side!!!! and believe me we are the WINNING SIDE!!!!!!!!!!! Come on give your support do not simply lay down and let this council walk all over you!!!!!
PEOPLE POWER IS POSITIVE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
What is the point of it raining in Kapiti when KCDC are hell bent on disregarding ratepayers stance against installing water meters which has no restricting meaningful merit. The mind-set should be storing the liquid gold instead of letting it run straight out to sea.
Wonder what 4000 or 5000 or, goodness gracious, 6000 signatures means. If the powers with our greater good in their hands decide to ignore, what’s the point? There are a lot of big machines around these days: bureaucracy, government,
NZTA, Expressway lobby, corporate stuff, councils, “bullydozers” … little Kapiti needs an Arab Spring! Come on, let’s wake up!