Where have all the projects gone? It's a long time passin’ since this new Waiheke Local Board was elected, nearly six months already, with nothing but an expensive picnic for the Board and its mates to show ratepayers for their money.
The only Council activity on the ground, so to speak, is various projects put in place by the former Board. These include new footpaths, a new bus shelter outside the Red Cross, a new $5 million library, a $1 million upgrade to the Artworks courtyard and the upgrade to the old Oneroa Bowling Club.
New footpaths have been completed in Moa Ave, with the much needed road widening, and Tui St. A new one is under way from Browns Ave to Te Makiri Rd as part of the Seaview Rd road rehabilitation. The new bus shelter is in place by the Red Cross. My guess is the only reason these have gone ahead is because they are budgets controlled by Auckland Transport and out of the grasp of this Board. If they could have stopped them they would have.
Several hundreds of thousands of dollars allocated to projects this financial year (which finishes in three months time) have disappeared or been put in limbo. These include the Onetangi Sports Pavilion upgrade, a perimeter walk around the golf course lease area, and street banners for Oneroa. Other planned projects included a Ngati Poua commemorative artwork for the new library, a new footpath from Erua Rd to Waiheke Primary School to improve safety for children walking to school (the wrong school, I guess) and tens of thousands that should have gone to wetland restoration and other environmental projects.
The only reason Oneroa Bowling Club upgrade has been completed is because it’s needed for offices for the Board while the Ostend Service Centre upgrade takes place. They move in during the next two weeks.
All projects mentioned in this blog are the result of actions by the former Board. The new Local Board Plan mentions one project only for the next eighteen months, the ‘community’ pool, now to be a ‘school’ pool, sited on the grounds of Waiheke High School. Money has been sucked out of every other budget to pay for this folly. A folly, what’s more, with NO evidence of even being wanted by the schools themselves.
To stop projects already planned, budgeted and paid for is nothing less than a slap in the face to the former Board and a waste of money for the ratepayer. It’s the behaviour of spoilt children let loose in a paddling pool who set about spilling all the water out so nobody can enjoy themselves.
If this Board is an example of how the economy would be run by the Green Party it’s no wonder Labour is wooing NZ First and why National is so far ahead in the polls. Remove all the activism, fluff and media hooplah around this Board and what’s left? A bad idea with a very bad smell about it.