Watercare visits Penny Bright and investigates her meter

My sources have told me that this morning Watercare turned up at Penny Bright’s house and started investigating her unusual water reticulation methods.


As I posted on the weekend it appears that Penny Bright has breached Watercare’s bylawsRead more »

Can Penny Bright explain this?

Penny Bright refuses to pay her rates and has been slammed with $13,000 in court costs.

She maintains she is righteous in her attempts to shirk rates.

But it would appear that not only is she shirking her rates, she may also be subverting the water supply to her property.

Photos obtained by Whaleoil suggest she is bypassing the water meter to her property via a jury-rigged hose system.

image2 Read more »

Auckland Council admit there is a problem with water infrastructure as well

Watercare have taken offence at my assertions that Auckland infrastructure is stuffed and has 10% capacity remaining in it.

That’s not necessarily their fault – they inherited a legacy of poor management from the seven former Councils and they have a limited capacity to raise funds for more expenditure.

Now they say that the limited capacity isn’t really an issue because they have lots of expenditure planned.

Except that the planned infrastructure is spread over decades and, importantly, it doesn’t fix the issue today. It doesn’t even fix it in the next 5 or 10 years.

Auckland Council even admit that the current infrastructure is stuffed.

Only last week a presentation made by Council’s own Manager for Growth and Infrastructure Strategy, Dawne Mackay, states clearly that they have issues:   Read more »

Watercare are feeling the heat

Watercare are feeling the heat.

The type of heat that – at first – is warm. But before you know it, it has quickly turned into a full-blown pants-on-fire experience.

Last week I pointed out that Watercare have only 10% capacity today in their network for approximately 45,000 connections. That’s not only a tiny amount, it’s also a bit of a looming problem.

Simple maths says that if Auckland is growing at 8,000 dwellings a year (plus commercial space) the network capacity is in the kaka.

Turns out Watercare didn’t really like us pointing that out.

Watercare response to Whale Oil article ‘How will Watercare support intensification when their network is stretched already?’

Watercare strongly refutes suggestions by blog Whale Oil that their networks cannot service a growing Auckland.

The statement published on Whale Oil claiming that Watercare has 10 percent capacity remaining in its existing water supply and wastewater network does not reflect the extent of Watercare’s planned investments that will accommodate Auckland growth.

There are currently about 430,000 homes and businesses connected to the Watercare network, which has capacity for approximately 45,000 new homes and businesses to connect today.

Every year Watercare invests hundreds of millions in growth-related projects. This year, the organisation is spending $150 million on projects to cater for a growing population. Next year, Watercare plans to invest $200 million.   Read more »

How will Watercare support intestification when their network is stretched already?

Watercare have now only got just over 10% capacity remaining in their existing network.

With Watercare stating that they have approx 435,000 connections and an estimated 45,000 connection capacity remaining they’ve basically signalled that their networks cannot service the city.

The booming population is affecting housing, traffic as well as something a little less noticeable – water.

Two future water pipelines are likely to be installed to cope with the massive population growth in west and north Auckland.

Watercare is lodging applications to secure the routes for the pipelines that will run across the Upper Harbour area.    Read more »

Why has Auckland Council not asked the ratepayers for permission to dick around with fluoride in the water supply?

Watercare has lowered the amount of fluoride in our water, but done it secretly…but get this…the nutters who want no fluoride are complaining about it!

Auckland’s water provider has quietly reduced its target for fluoride levels in the region’s drinking water.

But it denies the move was clandestine.

Watercare has reduced its target fluoride levels from 0.85 parts per million to 0.7ppm.

The Ministry of Health recommends fluoride content for drinking water in the range of 0.7-1.0ppm and must not exceed 1.5ppm — the acceptable maximum level.

A Watercare spokeswoman said the 0.15ppm drop was part of a continuing effort by the organisation to follow best practice standards.

She said this, “combined with recent international reports, resulted in an operational adjustment of the fluoride target”.    Read more »

Here they come Len. This is what deliberate sabotage earns you

Len Brown needs more money.

He’s got the rate payers to a point where they are no longer willing to put up with his ridiculous rates rises.  So now he has to fiddle around the edges by introducing parking charges in all suburbs of Auckland.  And… rejigging the water charges, starting with new connections.

The [Auckland] council-owned Watercare Services this week announced it would charge an additional $2300 for each new home or apartment connecting to its network.

Housing Minister Nick Smith said the move was not helpful at a time when there was a focus on trying to make housing more affordable.

Watercare’s move takes to $12,075 the fee it will charge for new connections. It is lower than the fee charged by some councils, but the company said it still covered only 30 percent of the cost of new infrastructure.

Dr Smith said work underway by his ministry and Treasury is looking at the charging practices of network companies which service new housing areas, including water and electricity and phone networks.

He said at present, the legislation governing Watercare Services meant it was outside the reach of local government law changes, bringing in new checks on how much can be charged for new developments. Read more »

What is going on here? Is Auckland part of north Korea now?

via theruss.org

via theruss.org

Wayne Thompson reports on an absurd story in Auckland

New Zealand’s first environmentally sustainable public “third pipe” scheme, planned to serve thousands of homes with recycled storm water, has been plugged.

Rain falling on Stonefields – a redevelopment of a former East Auckland quarry – was to be fed to a storm water retention pond and treated to feed a plumbing network to toilets and garden taps.

Sounds like a smart use of free water to me.  No need to use potable water to flush toilets or water the lawn.  So what’s the problem here?   Read more »

A knife, try a chainsaw or a big axe

This will be the size of the knife Len Brown says he will use to cut pay rate at the Council

This will be the size of the knife Len Brown says he will use to cut pay rate at the Council

Len Brown reckons he has listened to the people and he is going to take a knife to high council salaries and debt. He has of course flip-flopped from defending high salaries to now railing against them.

On top of that his promise to bring in the “living wage” is just going to add to the debt mountain his unfunded promises have already created.

Yesterday, Mr Brown said “messages” about debt and spending were very clear and he planned to address them when he presents the first cut of next year’s budget to councillors on November 17.

One issue Mr Brown has promised action on is pay for senior staff – 1500 of whom earn more than $100,000 and 113 more than $200,000.

During the election, he defended salaries of nearly $800,00 for council chief executive Doug McKay and Watercare chief Mark Ford, saying, “You have got to meet the market.”  Read more »

Pam Squawkery kicks Len Brown in the slats

It is just a pity that Pam Corkery didn’t come out with her opinion piece a couple of weeks ago. It is a ripper and she fair kicks Len Brown in the slats.

Not voting is alien to me and I have been guilty of preaching to fellow citizens who aren’t up for democracy at the moment.

I am going to stop, because events have forced me to look at Len Brown, then look away again – quickly.

I don’t blame Mayor Brown for the nationwide apathy about local-body elections. But he can cop a fair chunk of the responsibility in Auckland.

Mr Brown is a cartoon politician. He was the people’s choice who presented his arse for a smooch as soon as he got the boss’ job.

He has been a bleeder looking for something sharp to bump into in the past few days.  Read more »