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City Council rejects community recycling service

Media Statement

15 May 2008

Jami-Lee Ross

Manukau City Councillor for Howick

Manukau City Council rejects community recycling service

A Manukau City councillor has criticised his council and its Mayor for rejecting a move to extend recycling services to community organisations in Manukau.

Howick councillor Jami-Lee Ross was one of several councillors that advocated for the city's new recycling service to be extended to all community organisations in the city.

The move came after the Manukau City Council had previously decided only to extend the service to Marae in the city. Mr Ross says the Council is not being even handed by extending the service to Marae only, and not other community organisations.

"I am very supportive of Marae being included in the new recycling service being introduced this year, but only if that same service is offered to other community organisations in the city," says Mr Ross.

"I am concerned that Manukau City Council is not viewing all community groups in the same light. It is completely unfair for the Council to extend recycling services to Marae, but forget about the many pre-schools, sports clubs and churches in Manukau."

Mr Ross proposed a motion that the Council considers providing the service to all community organisations next year as a matter of fairness. He says it is unreasonable for the Council to give preferential treatment to one group over another.

The motion proposed by Mr Ross was lost by five votes to seven at the Council's Policy and Activities Committee on Thursday morning.

A further motion was subsequently moved by Councillor Daniel Newman that all community organisations be included in the recycling services immediately from July onwards, which was also lost by five votes to seven.

Mr Ross says he is particularly surprised that those councillors who call themselves advocates of recycling and a sustainable city have opposed a move to increase recycling in Manukau.

"Mayor Len Brown was especially critical of our suggestion that Marae be treated like all other community organisations in the city, and spoke strongly in support of recycling in Manukau's Marae.

"However when we proposed that churches, sports clubs and pre-schools also receive the service, Mayor Brown and six other councillors rejected that proposal.

"It is appalling for those elected representatives to decide that one community group is more deserving of a ratepayer funded service than others. These organisations are the pillars of our community and we should not be picking winners and losers amongst them."

Mr Ross says recycling is an important service that local government provides, and he will continue to push for all Manukau community organisations to be included in the new recycling programme.

ENDS

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