Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Auckland Council Panel 'Undemocratic' over GMO Legacy Policy

Auckland Council Panel 'Undemocratic' for Deleting Legacy Policy on GMOs

A meeting of the Auckland Council's Regional Development and Operations committee erupted in argument and a senior councillor was ejected, after revelations that a council panel has decided to delete wording in the Hauraki Gulf Island District Plan designed to protect the islands from damage by genetically modified organisms.(1)

Former chair of the Auckland Regional Council Councilor Mike Like was shocked to hear legacy council policies had been removed from the plans and spoke against the secret deletion of the clause in the Hauraki Gulf Island plan. He was forced to leave the meeting after refusing to apologise for blaming senior council officers for the debacle.

Officers were challenged to explain the decision but in their responses to reassure the committee they appear to have deliberately misled councillors by saying no decision by council to delete the GMO wording had been made.

This is not the case. Evidence available on the Auckland Council website shows the council hearing panel has already decided to delete the wording from the plan, prior to a court hearing of appeals to the plan.(2)

"This is a shocking failure of democracy and governance. There has been a deliberate and covert effort to remove the policies of legacy councils that relate to community concerns for protecting GMO-free natural environments like the Hauraki Gulf," says Jon Carapiet speaking for GE-free Auckland communities.

'Waiheke Island has been a GE-free zone since 1999, but with stealth the protections for the community vision provided in the District Plan have been removed and watered down."

"Community Boards and Councilors have been blindsided and further misled in the answers given by council officers at the Regional Development and Operations committee meeting," says Jon Carapiet.

A formal complaint has been made to the committee chair about the misleading information given to councillors by council officers at the committee.

Though the decision to delete the clause has yet be signed off in court, the council panel decision is final and cannot be challenged before the appeal hearing, even though the basis of the decision is clearly flawed.

The justification used to delete mention of GMOs doesn't make sense.The panel decision to subsume GMOs under new organisms reduces the council's capacity to regulate damage from GMOs. Under the amended wording they will cease to be subject to regulation when no longer deemed new.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On Tomorrow’s Speeches By John Key And
Andrew Little

The Key government has already kicked off the political year on a stridently ideological note, with Environment Minister Nick Smith choosing to lay all manner of sins at the door of the Resource Management Act.

Tomorrow, the government will wheeling out its best salesman – Prime Minister John Key – to sell its plans for state housing, which happens to be another of the government’s most contentious, most ideologically-driven policy packages. Presumably, Key will be trying not to double down on the rhetoric, and thereby leave room for Labour leader Andrew Little to sound like the centrist voice of reason.

Key will have his work cut out, though. More>>

 

Transport: Auckland Looks To Light Rail

The Board of Auckland Transport has called for an investigation into a light rail network, which could relieve traffic congestion on some of the region’s busiest roads. This stems from work in 2012 (the City Centre Future Access study) which responded to a government request to develop a robust and achievable solution for access to the CBD. More>>

ALSO:

RMA: Smith's Claims Don't Match Evidence - Greens

The Motu group’s research into the impacts of planning rules looked at the costs related to housing development but not the benefits of environmental protections and does not recommend significant changes to the RMA to reduce the cost of new house builds. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Similarities Between John Key And David Cameron

For years now, David Cameron has been the closest available thing to a mentor/analogue to our Prime Minister, such that Key watchers could be interested in an analysis of Cameron that appeared in the British press over the Christmas break. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Ian Fletcher Resignation & GCSB’s New Role

It may well be that after being shoulder-tapped in Queensland for the GCSB job, three years of living in Wellington has been enough for Fletcher and his family, given that the pending review of the GCSB would have required an even longer commitment from him. Three years of Wellington’s weather is enough for anyone... More>>

ALSO:

Ian Apperley: $10m Or $100m For New Wellington Council IT System?

I feel a Tui Billboard coming on. I commented the other day that it looked like the Council’s Ninth big project was a potential $100 million plus... The Mayor has responded: “I am reassured by the Chief Executive and by Anthony Wilson that the proposed budget is in the region of $10 million.” More>>

ALSO:

Southern Ocean:
Navy Intercepts Illegal Fishing Vessels

Foreign Minister Murray McCully today put illegal fishing vessels operating in the Southern Ocean on notice and vowed to take action against their owners. “As part of a multi-agency operation, the HMNZS WELLINGTON has intercepted two vessels claiming to be flagged to Equatorial Guinea, fishing illegally in the Southern Ocean.” Mr McCully says. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news