Small local improvements (SLIPS) money is the discretionary money Waiheke Local Board has at its disposal to make a difference to the community. How a Board uses this fund is, to a large extent, the measure of its worth so it is always interesting to see how this precious fund is allocated and what projects are being undertaken for the long term benefit of us all.
The first items to be funded were made at last month’s Board meeting where three allocations were made.
- A slush fund of $5000 for the sole use of the Chair and Deputy to use as they see fit without the prior approval of the other Board members.
- A $10k volunteer kit for items such as a BBQ and trailer for the Board members and ‘volunteers’ (read mates) to use for picnics.
- $55,000 for design work and consents for the Bridle Bridge to Brigadoon I reported on a few weeks ago, which is basically for the Board Chair to be able to ride his horses over to save the poor creatures having to cross the busy (not) O’Brien Rd
How does the Board intend to pay for the Bridle Bridge to Brigadoon? According to the Board minutes this is what the $200,000 discretionary allocation (now $400,000 because the board couldn’t come up with any ideas of how to use this money last year and the fund is granted annually) from the Auckland Transport Capital Fund is to be used for.
Projects to be ‘scoped’ for more funding include:
- A ‘heritage’ evaluation of the Harbourmaster's building at Matiatia. One’s already been done but, hey, don’t tell the Board. Either they don’t know about it or it doesn’t say what they want it to say.
- Another survey of the Esplanade. Why? Yes, that’s a rhetorical question. Auckland Transport have already reported back on their recent survey in the July agenda. Obviously, that too didn’t say what the Board wanted it to say.
- A ‘cultural vales assessment’ of Onetangi Sports Park. Well we all know what that’s about don’t we.
- A ‘concept plan’ for Alison Park, presumably in addition to the $30k set aside for a Reserve Management Plan for the park. Of course, there is already a Reserve Management Plan for Alison Park, one of the few reserves on Waiheke to actually have a plan. Why do we another? Presumably because the original doesn’t say what the Board wants it to say
What is not included is any money for the environmental work started by the former Board to restore the nationally and regionally significant wetlands at Te Matuku and Rangihoua. So much for having a Green Party sponsored Board in power. New Zealand take note, it’s not about the environment ,as then Board member but now hard left Green party list MP Denise Roche, screeched at me during one Board meeting for the brief time she was a member.
As I said at the beginning how a Board spends its SLIPs money is a measure of its worth to the community. Conclusion, this Board is of no worth to the community as a whole but very worthy of contempt as it continues to waste our precious rates money on ‘huey’ but no ‘doey’.