The Dom Post editorial:
The super-city proposal has drawn all kinds of of flak for how it might suck the “local” out of local democracy. But sometimes parochialism makes for its own dubious decision-making, as our councils proved this week.
First was the news that Hutt City Council is progressing plans for a $6 million bowling centre in Naenae.
That, one councillor calculated, means $13,000 of investment for each local bowling club member. If it’s true, that’s simply ridiculous. It gets worse, because bowling numbers are in decline – the number of clubs nationally has more than halved since the late 1990s.
Meanwhile Naenae itself is home to an unusually high proportion of young people, which makes it an even more incongruous project: expensive new digs for a sport favoured by older people..
And the costs of the centre are rising, at least for the council – it has been asked to double its contribution to $4m, while its subsidiary Community Facilities Trust will raise the rest.
Any Councillor who votes for this should be sacked. They want to take $60 off every resident and build a bowling centre which would be used by a few hundred people.