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Letters Between David Thornton + Gwen Bull

Extraordinary Meeting – Letters Between Thornton + Bull


I have just heard that you have taken the most undemocratic step of refusing to accept a requisition from almost half your council to call a meeting on Monday 11th August - a meeting at which I was to speak [by way of deputation] on behalf of thousands of your ratepayers.

I understand that your reason for refusing was that the requisition did not give three working days notice, as required under the Local Government Act 2002. I note that the requisition was given to you this morning, Thursday, which was three clear days - but only one working day.

To refuse the requisition on such a technicality represents further insight into the inability of seven members of the ARC - including yourself - to accept the demands of ratepayers and the reality that you are in crisis with thousands of ratepayers already withholding payment of their rates.

I was also startled to learn that you had gone to Bell Gully for legal advice on this single question. Is that true? How much did that cost? And why did you not use Simpson Grierson the council's normal advisers?

I now learn that, having refused to hold a meeting as requisitioned, you have yourself, as chairperson, called a meeting for Wednesday at 2.00pm - to discuss the same issues - BUT only to RECEIVE LEGAL ADVICE AND OFFICER REPORTS - there is no mention of considering and resolving on these issues.

And there is no mention of my deputation on behalf of ratepayers.

Was it your deliberate intention not to receive my deputation on behalf of ratepayers?

And will this meeting be fully open to the public?

It is my present intention - depending on your response to this email - to refer, what is obviously a breakdown of the ability of the ARC to govern in the best interest of the regional community, to the Minister of Local Government requesting urgent Ministerial intervention.

The stubbornness, intransigence and sheer naivety in the handling of this crisis by the ARC defies comprehension.

Gwen - this email may be strongly-worded, but I have to find a way to get the message through.

You may think me arrogant - and that may be true.

But it is arrogance born out of anger.

For nearly two weeks I have been receiving over 200 phone calls a day - and yes I know I started this, - or rather I took up the cudgels following John Drury's splendid lead in Orewa and Rodney - I cannot let down those people.

And you should listen to them to.

Please let me speak on their behalf

Over to you

David Thornton


Re: Extraordinary Meeting


Thank you for your email.

I have not refused a meeting.

The meeting will be held at 2:00 pm Wednesday 13th August. It is a public meeting.

This is the earliest possible time that this meeting could be held under the new act; which clearly states three working days notice must be given. The three days notice does not include the day the requisition is received

I have had no request from you for a delegation to that meeting, or any other meeting, and you know the rules as well as I do about delegations to council meetings

In regard to your query on legal advice. We did take advice from Simpson Grierson and had that advice peer reviewed by Bell Gully. I also sought an Auditor General's opinion.

Gwen Bull


My Apologies David,

I Accept The Last Line Of Your Email As A Request For A Delegation

Regards Gwen

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