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Lawyers Attempt to Stop Councillors Voting

Media Release
From: Paraparaumu Airport Coalition

Lawyers Attempt to Stop Councillors Voting On Paraparaumu Airport Development
5th April 2008

The Paraparaumu Airport Coalition says it has obtained a secret Kapiti District Council document which shows council officials are trying to muzzle councillors opposed to a massive airport development.

The Coalition says the confidential document, written by the KCDC lawyers Simpson and Grierson, was distributed to the 10 councillors on Friday (April 4).

The councillors are due to vote on Monday on an RMA Hearing report that recommends a highly-controversial business park development on the Airport – and the destruction of the alternate East/West runway.

The legal document says councillors with a “potential bias, or who have indicated a predetermined position” should not take part in the vote.

It says “Some councillors have been directly involved with this subject matter, which of itself suggests predetermination and suggests bias.”

The Airport Coalition says this is a blatant attempt to bully key councillors into not voting – and a perversion by the Kapiti Coast District Council of the democratic process.

Alan Tristram, convenor of the Airport Coalition, says the document actually tells councillors they have no choice but to vote for the development.

And he says virtually half the Council could be wiped out by this ‘clumsy vote rigging attempt.’

He says one of the 10 councillors has already indicated he will shun the whole process out of disgust.

And the legal letter is an attempt to shut down other councillors who might show some independent thought in the matter.

ENDS

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