Patsy’s Beat Up

Lianne Dalziel must be desperate for headlines, or she is starting her tilt at the mayoralty early because she has been fomenting a bit of mischief:

The former homeowners of several quake-ravaged Christchurch houses to be bulldozed today are reportedly only just finding out about the demolition plans.

The first of the red-zoned homes will begin being destroyed today, with a trial demolition of 11 government-bought properties taking place on Seabreeze Close, Waireka Lane and Kokopu Lane in Bexley .

The properties will be cleared over a four-week period.

More than 2000 red-zone homeowners have settled with the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (Cera) since the Government sent out offers to purchase properties damaged in last year’s February 22 earthquake.

Labour earthquake recovery spokeswoman Lianne Dalziel this morning told TVNZ’s Breakfast that there had not been satisfactory communication from Cera to the people who had once lived in the homes that are to be destroyed.

“There are people who are only just finding out their homes are going to be demolished this week, and I think that’s really not good enough,” she said.

“Some of those people have been out of their homes since September 2010 but nobody’s bothered to tell them it’s their house that’s coming down this week.

What a whole lot of fuss over nothing. They sold their house to the government, have been paid out, it isn;t theirs anymore…and why would they want to be notified anyway…prurient self indulgence? Did they want to go around and wail in front of cameras as the house they sold and got paid out for was demolished?

Gerry Brownlee has called it for what it is:

Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee is defending not telling former Bexley residents about the demolition of their old homes, accusing Labour of a “beat-up”.

Demolition of 11 homes in the Bexley residential red zone on Seabreeze Cl, Waireka Ln and Kokopu Ln began today after their former owners sold their houses to the Government and moved.

Christchurch East Labour MP Lianne Dalziel today said some former residents were upset after not being informed of the demolition.

Brownlee called Dalziel’s comments a “bit of a beat-up”.

“I think this is a demonstration of the new bipartisanship approach the Labour Party wants to take and an indication of no change,” he said, referring to Labour leader David Shearer’s recent comments that the party would take a bipartisan approach to the quake recovery.

Brownlee said residents had been informed of the demolitions and a street meeting was held on Friday.

However, with more than 5000 homes to be demolished in Christchurch’s red zones, it was not practical to tell former homeowners about the impending demolition of their homes, he said.

“Once you have settled, you know the house is either going to be moved to another site … or demolished.”

The current approach of not informing former homeowners was reasonable and would not change, he said

Typical of Labour…preying on people’s misery or in this case making up people’s misery.

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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

To read Cam’s previous articles click on his name in blue.