We don’t forget - Northern Advocate – 27th February 2012

Who is moaning?

Am I surprised at the potential of an about turn on Public forums by the Mayor mentioned in Friday’s edition?  In short, no; it’s the only thing he campaigned on that he hasn’t already swung 180 degrees on.  I was pleased the forums were taken into this term of council by the new mayor, as it was only one of the policies that I campaigned on, for Morris to later add to his list of promises.  Have the forums been successful?  They could have been if the window of opportunity they present had been taken in a number of instances, rather than just closing the shutters and shooting the messengers.  There was an opportunity for the mayor to attend a public meeting on Thursday at the Hikurangi swamp, which could well have enlightened him on issues he claimed at Wednesday’s public forum he knew nothing about; but did he attend?  No.  If you continue to bury your head in the sand or plead ignorant and not address issues raised, the future could be grim.  The job is more demanding that handing our awards and kissing babies.  I have to comment that in the past some presenters at the public forum had been short changed of time, but more recently there have been satisfactory improvements to that.  As for the comments “it was unfair to use the forum to launch personal attacks because those spoken against had no opportunity to respond”.  Last Wednesday there were responses from three in council, plus the chair, so that point is not at all truthful.  Try sitting in a meeting when councillors aim snide comments to those present in the public gallery.  Do we have an opportunity to reply?  No.  Do we gripe?  No.  This is just another example of double standards by this council; but do we forget?  No.

Warren Slater



(items abridged in italics for Northern Advocate copy)