ARC's legal fetish

[Imported from Whale Oil Beef Hooked on Blogger]

The ARC is out of control and needs to get its priorities straight. It sticks its nose in any, and everywhere it can, and wastes huge amounts of ratepayers’ money in the process.

Last month we saw the story of ARC taking court action over a matter in Coromandel, well outside its region. This despite even the Thames-Coromandel District Council opting not to pursue the matter.

There is also the ongoing issue of the ARC seeking a court order to cram more people into Panmure against the wishes of the community, and an agreement with the Auckland City Council.

The latest issue that ARC is trying to play “big brother” with is the placement of a $25m new school in Waitakere City. “Waitakere city councillor Penny Hulse says that with the proposed State Highway 18 extension running right next to the site, and future growth earmarked for the area, it is the perfect location for a school”

Not according to the ARC, who declined “…stormwater, wastewater and earthworks [consents]…on the grounds the site is outside the metropolitan urban limit”

I’ll leave the stupidity of the metropolitan urban limit for another day, however using the MUL to decline those particular consents is a very poor excuse. The reason being because the Waitakere City Council had already given resource consent for the school to be placed there, and as Cr Hulse notes: “The regional authority shouldn’t be too rigid in its position on city limits and has to be flexible enough to consider the needs of Waitakere residents. The metropolitan urban limit isn’t the Berlin Wall,” she says.

While ARC does, under legislation, have a role in how and where Auckland grows and expands, it shouldn’t be in the business of continually opposing local decisions, made by locally elected councillor, from territorial local authorities. We have seen this with the Coromandel case, the Panmure case, and now in Waitakere.

The winner from ARC’s fetish with environment court action is always the legal practitioner. And the loser is always the ratepayer.

… but that’s the left wing ARC for you!


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