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Community Disregarded in Waiheke Waste Decision

Media Release
City Vision-Labour Councillors - Auckland City Council
For Immediate Release
Thursday 11 June 2009

Community Disregarded in Waiheke Waste Contract Decision

Auckland City Council’s City Development Committee today disregarded and ignored the Waiheke community when considering a ten-year waste services contract. Citizens and Ratepayers (C&R) councillors voted to disqualify incumbent tenderer Clean Stream Waiheke Ltd and to recommend that tomorrow’s extraordinary Auckland City Council meeting grant Transpacific Industries Group Ltd a $22 million contract.

Councillor Richard Northey said, “I am profoundly disappointed that emails I received from the Director of Clean Stream which raised questions about the growing mountain of refuse from the VISY plant on the coast of Onehunga where I live were used by C&R as the excuse to disqualify Clean Stream from continuing to manage waste on Waiheke. The community-based non-profit operation on Waiheke is a world leader in innovation and in the quality of recyclables produced. Both Waiheke and Auckland city will be much the poorer for terminating Clean Stream’s service. Tomorrow at the special Council meeting I will support a City Vision-Labour motion to re-open Waiheke waste management tenders to give the Waiheke community a fresh chance for their own waste management.”

Councillor Leila Boyle said, “There has not been any wrong doing by City Vision-Labour councillors or by Clean Stream Waiheke Ltd. I have found the witch hunt to discredit Clean Stream and City Vision-Labour councillors absolutely outrageous and I wonder whether similar searches of emails and communications from council officers will occur. That only seems fair to me!”

Councillor Glenda Fryer said, “What Clean Stream has been doing over the last ten years has been proudly held up by Auckland City Council as a New Zealand-wide famous exemplar of a successful community recycling scheme. But community based scheme can’t compete against a multi-national which can switch costs between projects to undercut the ‘little guy’ so, of course, Clean Stream’s contract price was higher.”

Councillor Graeme Easte said, “C&R had a predetermined view that the lowest cost was the most important factor to make a decision on. City Vision-Labour councillors have a predetermined view that environmental, social and cultural factors are just as, if not more, important. In consultation with the community, we suggested that the additional costs from the Clean Stream tender be covered by the Waiheke community because we believe that that environmental, social and cultural outcomes from Clean Stream’s operations are too important to lose.”

ENDS

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