ECan, Commissioners and Water

It’s no surprise, but the Government has decided to replace the Canterbury Regional Councillors with commissioners.  The necessary legislation has already gone through Parliament, under urgency.

It remains to be seen what this means in practice for the huge amount of under-the-radar work ECan actually does – like the meeting of the Ashley-Sefton Rating District Committee meeting that I attended – held recently in a Sefton farmer’s driveway!  Cr Ross Little was there – would a commissioner have come? 

A lot of locals are excited about the idea of a proposed Ashley River-Rakahuri Regional Park, modelled on that under development in the Waimakariri River.  It will require public consultation.  We would have expected ECan councillors to be involved in that.  I hope we find a commissioner who is interested.

Likewise, I’ve heard that some people in Oxford would like a bus service – not, despite appearances, an easy matter, given the way District Council rates are going up in Oxford this year.  More consultation – but carried out by whom?

All Councils, including ECan, make representations to the government from time-to-time on behalf of their ratepayers and constituents.  Who will be the commisioners’ constituents?

The above are only a sample.

I accept fully that water is the Number One issue for Canterbury as a region, but the government’s move leaves a lot of unanswered questions.  We can only wait.

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2 Responses to “ECan, Commissioners and Water”

  1. Edward Says:

    You are bang on in your blog – however your final sentence is that of a dead mans – “We can only wait” – is that like in waiting for godot (absurdity) or like ‘a little child waits’ world vision advert (children dying)? Instead of taking a salary from rate-payers, because lets face it you just want to ‘wait’ for three years, maybe you could resign and wait in a waiting room or you could spend a bit of time waiting tables or go to purgatory and wait for a god of your choice. Or you could act like an democratically elected councillor and stand up for democracry in the face of the nationalisation (NZ) of our water.

    You have misconstrued what I said – we will have to wait and see what the answers are to the kind of questions I asked. And no, I am not going to resign at your request. District councillors have no more power in this than you do – and even although Nick Smith and Rodney Hide have given an explanation to the Waimakariri District Council, the Council still has not expressed a view on the firing of the ECan councillors.

    Your comment about nationalisation is a bit strange – I thought most people concerned about the future of our water were afraid of the opposite to nationalisation, i.e. privatisation.

    • Edward Says:

      Sorry mate but you actually do hold a bit more power than me. Correct me if I am wrong but can’t you as a councillor put a resolution to the council re Ecan – I know a fair few people who would be interested in the breakdown of votes. I’m certain the media would to.

      Re nationalisation – I was refering to fact that what was once Canterbury’s is now Wellington’s which I think we all agree is the first step towards privatisation.

      Good luck in your mayorality campaign.



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