Ratbag councillor stirring when she has skeletons in her own closet


Cynthia Bowers is well known to regular readers of the blog. She’s been nominated for her dodgy behaviour before.

She is also a councillor who likes to say one thing in public and quite another thing in other circumstances.

Instead of answering valid questions about her own dodgy Horse of the year projects and the corporate welfare granted secretly by the council to a water bottling plant, she is instead chucking dirt over three of the most ethical councillors in the region.

The regional councillors representing Hastings are being called on to be more transparent about the funders of their re-election campaigns.

To provide voters with transparency in the local body elections, Hawke’s Bay Regional Council candidate Cynthia Bowers is calling for all candidates to disclose donations received, citing the 2013 election donations of her opponents for the Hastings ward.

In response, councillors Rick Barker, Tom Belford, and Rex Graham have blasted Ms Bowers for insulting their integrity. ?

Under the current legislation, post-election candidates must disclose any expenses incurred and donations received during their campaign. Ms Bowers is suggesting that “in the interests of transparency” this should be disclosed before constituents vote on October 8.

“In the 2013 local government elections we now know from public records that the three sitting Hastings regional councillors received donations of more than $22,000 in total from the horticulture sector,” she said, adding for the most part voters had no idea what level of financial support the same three councillors have received in their current campaigns.

“In my view, the acceptance of campaign donations puts the elected member at risk of a perception of lack of independence,” Ms Bowers said.

According to the regional council’s return of electoral donations and expenses, fruit-growing groups were major contributors to the campaigns of the three Hastings councillors, and Ngaruroro councillor Peter Beaven.

All but Mr Barker declared contributions from Bostock Group, totalling $15,784. Apatu Farms donated a total $7868, and the Crasborn Group, a total $6747.

Ms Bowers said if the same people were funding the councillors in their re-election bids, it raised some serious questions.

“If you’re getting significant funding from one group of people in successive elections, how can you possibly sit there and be truly independent? I’m not saying that they’re not being independent, but I’m just saying that it raises a big question.”

The three councillors have denied the contributions from the horticulture sector have, or could, influence them in their roles.

That’s a bit rich for Mrs Horse of the Year debacle.

We don’t care about who funds campaigns, we do care about stupid people who spend ratepayers cash willy-nilly on behalf vested interests and featherbedding along with corporate welfare. Her continued support for the dodgy socialist dam makes her unsuitable to continue in her role.

Rinse this election.


-HB Today