Wellington Local Govt

July 4th, 2013 at 11:00 am by David Farrar

The Dom Post editorial:

When it comes time for the Local Government Commission to ponder the future shape of local government in the region it could do worse than consider the fate of the regional amenities fund.

The fund was established last year to promote artistic, cultural and environmental events and attractions in the wider Wellington region.

Five councils – Wellington, Hutt City, Upper Hutt, Kapiti and Masterton – agreed to contribute funds to it. Three – Porirua, South Wairarapa and Carterton – declined to contribute, despite their residents also benefiting from the amenities and events it was established to support.

This is our problem. The Regional Council has a very limited mandate. This means anything else that should be done regionally can only be done if all eight Councils agree to it. Madness.

I support two tiers as we have at the moment, but as part of the one organisation. That way we don’t have a huge amount wasted on Councils liaising with each other, suing each other.

Things which should be done regionally should be under the ambit of a Greater Wellington Council. Things which should be done regionally should be under the ambit of local councils.

Wellington is blessed with any number of natural advantages, but it can no longer afford to rest on its laurels.

The region is competing with Auckland, Sydney, Brisbane, London, Beijing and countless other cities, for investment, people and skills.

It needs to put its best foot forward and operate as a single region rather than a loose collection of feuding duchies.

Indeed.

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17 Responses to “Wellington Local Govt”

  1. RRM (10,097 comments) says:

    Three – Porirua, South Wairarapa and Carterton – declined to contribute, despite their residents also benefiting from the amenities and events it was established to support.

    His Worshipfulness the Editior makes it sound like this is a serious matter where we ungrateful hicks in the South Wairarapa are LEECHING MILLIONS off all you hard-working Wellington Ratepayers to subsidise our roads, buses, water, Hurricanes home games or the likes! :-)

    Here’s a spoonful of PERSPECTIVE:

    http://wellington.govt.nz/services/community-and-culture/funding/wellington-regional-amenities-fund

    Wellington Regional Amenities Fund

    $865,000 is available to allocate in the 2012/2013 financial year. There is one funding round per year.
    Purpose

    The WRA Fund has been set up to support eligible entities of regional significance with day-to-day operational expenses and new innovative projects that will achieve identified priorities for the region.

    The fund is focused on arts, cultural and environmental attractions and events to support and add to the attractiveness and vitality of the Wellington region.

    So it sounds like I’m shirking on my civic responsibility to support Graf Art projects on retaining walls in Newtown, and Hip Hop dance research at Te Whaea.

    Oh, I could almost die of shame. :oops:

    :neutral: No, not really. That was just a little joke.

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  2. RRM (10,097 comments) says:

    The region is competing with Auckland, Sydney, Brisbane, London, Beijing and countless other cities, for investment, people and skills.

    It needs to put its best foot forward and operate as a single region rather than a loose collection of feuding duchies.

    An $800k community arts grant from the regional council is how Wellington’s going to COMPETE WITH SYDNEY, BRISBANE, LONDON, and BEIJING?

    Really??

    Pull the other one, it plays the Communist Party anthem…

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  3. Alan Johnstone (1,087 comments) says:

    8 councils for less than half a million people is madness.

    Dying city indeed.

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  4. Viking2 (11,665 comments) says:

    Cry us a river.
    Tauranga ratepayers prop up all manner of garbage stuff because we are the biggest group.
    We even prop up our main highway that Transit won’t buy off us and that everyone uses. A few are tolled, the rest get a free ride into and back out to home in the county. similar for our libraries.
    But then Ebop manage to filch our cash to subsidize bus companies from here to Taupo.

    Then of course there are the tourism, arts, museums, big boys parks, hockey fields et al.

    Local authorities are worse than Govt.

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  5. Ed Snack (1,936 comments) says:

    Having seen how these things work out, I reckon you have completely the wrong end of the stick here. The LAST thing Wellington needs is another big, faceless bureaucracy that becomes an absolute haven for unions full of incompetent (at everything except extracting $$$ from council) that imposes uniform (uniformly useless mostly) standards across a region that does not need them. Such organizations get too big, insiders get to run them for their own benefit, and elections offer up the usual set of local ratbags keen to perpetuate the status quo.

    Keep them small, that way you know what is going on and can influence matters when they start to go astray. The ra of big government should surely be dead given the results it has produced over the past few years.

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  6. backster (2,194 comments) says:

    Community and cultural groups should be funded by cultural groups and community groups, just like hockey clubs and boy scouts, not by ratepayers. Likewise special racial patronage and representation should not be a function of local bodies, let alone decisions to raise the minimum wage at ratepayers expense.
    Until amalgamation can be shown to hold or reduce rates I say let Auckland prove me wrong.

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  7. gravedodger (1,575 comments) says:

    During 20 years overseas service in the sticks beyond Masterton and only availing myself of the train trip maybe five times to welly it was always a greivous act to pay rates to Wellington regional council so they could magnanimously pay out my gold to subsidise mutors to travel to the capital every work day.

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  8. thedavincimode (6,890 comments) says:

    An $800k community arts grant from the regional council is how Wellington’s going to COMPETE WITH SYDNEY, BRISBANE, LONDON, and BEIJING?

    RRM, it’s all about baby steps & learning to crawl before walking. That will be why the Council appears to have set out to start the process by competing with Hamilton in the first instance. Get the arts thing first, then bring back the street race, introduce the living wage, and Wellington will be poised to springboard into the big league with an underground cable car.

    Or do what I suggested a little while ago and just bulldoze the whole fucking job into the sea.

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  9. nasska (12,088 comments) says:

    The sooner the Wairarapa goes it alone the better. I’m about two hours drive from Wellington which I would visit only as an act of atonement for some heinous crime as yet uncovered.

    This doesn’t stop the culture vultures from Wellington sticking their thieving hands out, demanding my money to prop up everything from arts to tourism wankfests. If the Chardonnay & latte set value that sort of crap let them pay for it with their own coin.

    What Davinci opined above & I’ll donate my time to drive a dozer! :)

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  10. wiseowl (974 comments) says:

    I’ve said it before and I will say it again.
    People do not understand the functions of a Regional Council and it is imperative they are kept separate from other TLA’s functions.

    I would suggest that transport needs to be dealt with by a separate agency throughout the country as it is an area that has really grown and does not ‘fit’ easily with other regional council functions.

    Maybe the centre for the Regional Council should be in Wairarapa?
    There needs to be better definition of functions and RC’s should not be involved in sports,arts or other unrelated activities.

    As has been stated the last thing any area needs is another bureaucratic monster that feeds on ratepayers.

    Local Government is about LOCAL Government.That is the whole point!!

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  11. thedavincimode (6,890 comments) says:

    for some heinous crime as yet uncovered

    I believe that you’re next on the list after Owen Glen.

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  12. nasska (12,088 comments) says:

    ….”I believe that you’re next on the list after Owen Glen.”…..

    Oh shit!…..lunch in Wellington again. :(

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  13. Pauleastbay (5,035 comments) says:

    Having until recently lived next door to a BOP Regional Councilor he would regale me weekly of the lastest round of waste by the councillors themselves. Two of whom couldn’t balance a cheque book, one was that old he slept through the majoirty of meetings and the most of the others didn’t have any other revenue stream and were totally dependent on the chairman for committies to pump up their income so any independence was farcical

    The BOP RC rate on the citizens is spent entirely on councilors salaries. All the serious loot come from the port company.

    If Wellington is even remotely similar arsehole the lot of them, they are just re-named catchment boards anyway.

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  14. Mobile Michael (472 comments) says:

    Just outsource to Hutt City – 0.9% Rates Rises this year (and at the rate of inflation for 10 years.)

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  15. Viking2 (11,665 comments) says:

    Pauleastbay (3,931) Says:
    July 4th, 2013 at 6:26 pm

    Having until recently lived next door to a BOP Regional Councilor he would regale me weekly of the lastest round of waste by the councillors themselves. Two of whom couldn’t balance a cheque book, one was that old he slept through the majoirty of meetings

    ———————————
    Ah so you have heard about Philip Sherry as well. Funny that.

    and we had von dazzeldon. A funny money man.

    The list is a long one.

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  16. Viking2 (11,665 comments) says:

    Politics is the gentle art of getting votes from the poor and campaign funds from the rich, by promising to protect each from the other.
    ~Oscar Ameringer, “the Mark Twain of American Socialism.”

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  17. PhilP (163 comments) says:

    @ Nasska 5.37pm.
    I think the 3 mayors unitary council plan is flawed insomuch as they have not told us the full story, unless I have missed something along the way. Where is the money going to come from to fund what the WRC currently do in the Wairarapa, where is the money going to come from to subsidize the trains and buses in and out of the Wairarapa. I tell you, it will come from the increased burden on the already overtaxed ratepayer, that’s who. No one running for council will get my vote until I have the answers to these questions. Somehow I doubt I will, so I will vote for any Councillor against a Wairarapa Unitary Council.

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