Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search


No community referendum on fluoridation for Rotorua

1 August 2014

No community referendum on fluoridation for Rotorua

Rotorua District Council last night (31 July) voted 7-6 to rule out a binding referendum to allow the community to decide on whether fluoride should be added to the district’s water supplies.

The issue was re-debated at a full council meeting, prompted by a notion of motion lodged against an earlier (16 July) Strategy, Policy & Finance Committee decision supporting a referendum. The new decision followed robust debate with all councillors expressing their views before a public gallery of 60 people in the Council Chamber.

Mayor Steve Chadwick - who supported an amendment for the referendum to be subject to Lakes District Health Board and Ministry of Health funding, and affordability - maintained it was a significant issue which had now been considered and dealt with by the council.

“That’s democracy,” Mrs Chadwick said. “This wasn’t a decision on the pros and cons of fluoride but on the process, and it was certainly not a decision taken lightly by councillors. The debate was spirited and fair, and it’s now time for us to collectively move on to other challenges and opportunities on behalf of our communities.”

Councillors who spoke against the motion were mostly concerned with the cost of the referendum at a time when Rotorua District Council had been through a major restructuring programme and was committed to being more financially prudent. Councillors Charles Sturt and Rob Kent also expressed a view that the potential for subsequent legal challenges could force more financial pressure on to the council.

Councillors Merepeka Raukawa-Tait and Glenys Searancke both talked of the need for Central Government to make the fluoride decision, and to stop the legal costs that were being racked up by local authorities across the country.

Councillors who spoke for a referendum stressed the importance of showing leadership by allowing Rotorua residents an opportunity to engage and have their say on the matter - in a term when the council had committed to better community engagement through its Rotorua 2030 vision and 2016 priorities.

Councillor Mike McVicker added that treatment of dental hygiene was a significant “social cost” to the Lakes District Health Board and it would be better for Rotorua if the money was able to be spent elsewhere.

Rotorua’s water is currently not fluoridated. The council has no further plans at this stage to reconsider fluoridation of the district’s water supplies.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines



Gordon Campbell: On John Key’s Trip To Iraq

In the embedded press coverage on this trip, the absence so far of any evaluation of the wider context of what New Zealand thinks it is doing at Camp Taji has been striking. More>>


Labour: Parata Puts Brakes On Charter School Appraisal

“When the Ministry of Education recommended they compare the achievements of children at charter schools to those of their counterparts at state schools, the documents show Hekia Parata specifically prohibited them from doing so." More>>


Bad Day For Universities: Gun, Bomb Threats On Three Campuses

Dunedin Police are continuing their investigation into the threat made against the University of Otago. Staff are following a number of lines of inquiry, and police are working to verify the authenticity and source of the post. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The TPP Deal Reached In Atlanta

Yes, the TPP has helped to knock a few points off the tariffs facing our exporters. Yet some of those alleged dollar gains may well have been made regardless over time – and without the negative baggage of the concessions in the non-trade areas (intellectual property, copyright extensions, investor-state dispute mechanisms etc) that the TPP deal also brings in its wake. More>> (Cartoon by Dave Wolland)

Public Summaries:


Wellington.Scoop: Serco – First The Prisons, And Now It Wants To Run The Trains

As the government continues its inquiry into Serco’s discredited administration of Mt Eden prison in Auckland, here in Wellington there’s further scrutiny of the British outsourcing company – because it’s competing to take over the running of our commuter trains. More>>


Pre-Signing: Gordon Campbell On The TPP Countdown

To date, the Key government has been unwilling to share any information about this TPP deal until it is too late for outraged public opinion to affect the outcome... the disclosure process is likely to consist of a similarly skewed and careful exercise in spin. More>>


Australia Deportations: English Relaxed On Immigration Centre Conditions

Labour's Annette King: “There have been numerous reports from inside these detention centres on just how bad conditions are... If they were being held in any other foreign jail, I imagine Mr English would be somewhat concerned. More>>


Schools: Achievement-Based Funding Would Be A Disaster

The Education Minister’s speech to the PPTA Conference raising the spectre of achievement data driving a new funding system would be disastrous, says NZEI Te Riu Roa. More>>

  • Video Out-Link - PPTA Annual Conference 2015 on Livestream (Q+A dicussion suggests funding would be directed to less successful schools.)

  • ALSO:

    ECE Report:

    Get More From Scoop



    Search Scoop  
    Powered by Vodafone
    NZ independent news