We are sending Mr Walden on a ‘Wild Things’ conference at a cost to us of $830 (ex GST) according to this week’s local board agenda. He’ll be taking three days off so if we add on his salary for three days that’s another $635 plus expenses.
“The Wild Things Conference and workshop is being held in Auckland and focuses on the loss of terrestrial, fresh water and marine biodiversity and what can be done to stop it.”
Auckland Council has very expensive expertise in its conservation, biodiversity and environmental protection departments. The staff provide advice and guidance on every conceivable environmental issue the Board might face, including marine biodiversity.
I’m sure the conference will be very interesting, but it will do little or nothing to provide value for money for core services for the ratepayers of Waiheke any more than the ratepayers have seen any benefit for the $15000 junket embarked on by the WLB almost as soon as it took office. It will however further Mr Walden’s Green Party ambitions
Ratepayers are heartily sick of being Council’s cash cow to be milked for every last cent to pay for vanity items for its Mayor, Councillors and some Local Board elected members, like Walden. The call from ratepayers is for their representatives to get back to basics and that means providing quality core services and facilities that provide for the present and future needs of communities. Is it any wonder the roads need repairing, no footpaths are being built and much needed upgrades to community facilities are being shelved when Walden uses our money to spend on himself?
What we get instead is a rates rises 100 times the rate of inflation to pay for nonsense projects that offer little or no value for money.
I couldn’t agree more that Mr Walden needs educating. He brings no formal qualifications to the job of running Waiheke, learnt nothing from his first eighteen months on the WLB, and has run a Board that has spent extravagantly on itself but not on the community at large.
Is it any wonder the ratepayers of Waiheke are exasperated. The local board has already wasted millions, lost Waiheke millions more, yet still finds enough for vanity spending to try and educate its Chairman...and these guys think they can save us money by running a Waiheke independent of Auckland Council. Yeah right!