- lost $1.4 million dollars that was there to be spent on infrastructure projects asked for by the community – Onetangi Sports Park pavilion extension, northern side boat ramps, and upgrading the old library space
- lost $200,000 by not spending their Transport Capital Fund last year and proposing to spend this year’s $200,000 enhancing the facilities available at the squatter live-aboard camp on the Causeway/Ostend Domain
- lost any chance of Waiheke ever getting a community swimming pool by backing a school pool
- lost our chance to retain our own unique signage to enhance the island’s identity by over-riding the last Board’s resolutions
- lost $17,000 for upgrading McKenzie Reserve
- lost the opportunity to amend the dog by-law to suit the island’s needs
- lost a proposed footpath from Erua Rd to Waiheke Primary School to enhance the safety of children on their way to school
- lost an upgrade to the Matiatia ferry terminal
- lost the immediate establishment of a permanent heli-pad for the Auckland Regional Helicopter Trust. The Trust was granted their ‘licence to occupy’ a space at Onetangi Sports Park. The Board moved it and since then, nothing
- lost momentum on the regionally and nationally significant wetland upgrades the first Board started at Rangihoua and Te Matuku
- lost funding for the Around Waiheke Walk
- lost the Oneroa street banners
- lost a bus shelter ready to be built on Wellington Rd
But surely this Board must have achieved something during the last year? Well let’s see. There’s been the junket ferry ride on the Hauraki Gulf of course and lots of money for plans, scoping, consultant’s reports, assessments and - more plans. Goodness knows we still haven’t seen the results of the $25k gifted to the schools for a consultant’s report on a school pool - promised last April. Oh and there’s the $20k for fruit trees planted on some lucky residents’ road frontages in Blackpool.
As I said, 6 months ago:
Certain Council bureaucrats and consultants love this sort of Local Board. That’s the lazy ones who don’t know their jobs. It means they don’t have to DO anything but produce pieces of paper. That takes months (sometimes years) and generally tells everyone what they already knew before. The community meanwhile, foots the bill and gets short-changed. The sad thing is the complete waste of ratepayers’ money when there are so many important projects that could be done.
So what’s in the Waiheke Local Board Plan for the next three years?
Well, not a lot. The Governing Body has understandably slashed their funding. It was the Mayor and Governing Body who granted the $2 million to be spent last year on projects already approved by the previous Board. They can’t have believed their luck when this Board wanted to return that money to the regional pot. They might even have suspected there was an element of vindictiveness against the achievements of the first Local Board.
So what’s left to fulfil this Board’s vision for Waiheke of taking us all back to the 1970s: a time when Board Chair Paul Walden was just a boy and could ride his horse everywhere - including over what is now the Golf Club greens and lease area.
Well, there’s the bridle bridge for Walden’s horses; even more money (to the tune of $200k per annum) for the High School to maintain and renovate their school gym (aka the Waiheke Recreation Centre) and more planning to decide what the Artworks theatre is all about. Oh, and more fruit trees - to the tune of $80k. Brilliant! You couldn’t have dreamt it up.
If the Mayor’s looking for cost cutting initiatives then I respectfully suggest they save us all a heap of money and disband this Waiheke Local Board.