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CAP Calls For Water Charges Boycott In Waitakere

CAP IS CALLING FOR A BOYCOTT OF USER PAYS CHARGES FOR WATER IN WAITAKERE CITY.

CAP as part of the People’s Option Water Coalition are calling on Waitakere property owners and Tenants to sign a pledge promising not to pay their next water bill.

WHY?

1. WAITKERE CITY COUNCIL IS NOT LISTENING.

Despite the fact that the council has received 14000 submissions and petitions opposing commercialisation of water, user pays and flat charges since 1997. The official policy of W.C.C still remains committed to spreading user pays to include wastewater. Go Waitakere stated in the recent Waitakere Ward By-election that they wish to see user pay charges introduced for services wherever possible. Go Waitakere deputy Mayor Bob Stanic recently proposed a motion to a special meeting of W.C.C not to include the People’s Option (a non-commercial proposal opposing user pays) in greater Auckland’s Water Review. This overturned a previous Council decision to include the People’s Option. Despite the exclusion of the People’s Option Citizens throughout Auckland responded in their thousands by signing submissions supporting the People’s Option, doubling the number of submissions the three official options received.
Last year W.C.C supported a legal move by Manukau City Council to allow Stand Alone Business Units (the water management model used in Waitakere) to charge for wastewater (currently the Local Government Act does not allow S.A.B.U’s to charge for wastewater). The move was rejected by the courts.

2. LOCAL GOVERNMENT ACT AND RATING POWERS ACT IS DUE TO BE REVIEWED IN JUNE.

Councils throughout Auckland including Waitakere under the umbrella of Auckland’s Water Review are lobbying Sandra Lee Local Government Minister to amend the rating powers act to allow SABU’s (like in Waitakere) to charge for wastewater. If this occurs people’s water bills could double or even triple driving our community into poverty. This would represent a further commercialisation of our water service and could eventually lead to privatisation. The Business Round Table see the individualisation of charges as a pre cursor to the above.

3. CAMPAIGN

The move to civil disobedience throughout the Auckland Region is the only option we have left. All other forms of protest have been ignored. CAP will distribute the People’s Option Coalition leaflet and pledge card throughout Waitakere (leaflet and pledge card included in this attachment).
The pledge card which states among other things residents intentions not to pay their next water bill can be sent post free to PM Helen Clarke who will then send them onto Waitakere City Council. The aim is to send a strong message to both Local a Central Government that people want their water run as a service and paid for through a progressive rating system. Residents can obtain cards from our community table at Henderson Square (Catherine Place) or phone CAP on 8366389. Spokesperson Meredydd Barrar says “Politicians are not listening it’s now time for mass civil disobedience if we are to defend our community from user pays, commercialisation or privatisation of this most valuable resource. Lets act together to keep water under community control and oppose user pays”.

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