Haven't we been here before?

Last updated 10:44 17/10/2012

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Here we go again. Last week the Upper Hutt City Council sent letters and submission documents to those people directly affected by Plan Change #15 to the Upper Hutt City District Plan 2004 - Flooding and Erosion Hazard Areas.

I thought we'd had this discussion in 2008/09. We had a series of public meetings, dozens of letters to the editor and meetings with the council.

At the public meetings we had hundreds of people objecting to the accuracy of the reports into the flooding and erosion of the Mangaroa River.

No-one was left in any doubt that the Greater Wellington Regional Council and Upper Hutt City Council plans were blatantly incorrect in data and findings.

The computer modelling was questioned and recommendations unsupported by evidence.

And now, three to four years later, the council is trying to ram this through again. After some seven years to prepare its case, the council has generously offered people four weeks to prepare theirs.

Submissions close at 5pm on November 9; so typical of the heavy-handedness of the council when it comes to residents and ratepayers consultation.

One can't help wondering is this yet another box-ticking exercise just to ensure that due process is followed.

It has been noticed that only those people directly in contact with the Mangaroa River have been sent letters, thereby excluding those who are indirectly affected, like neighbours, land- owners who don't have a river boundary and the general citizenry of Upper Hutt.

So the time has come again to challenge the council over its plan change. The same plans and reports still apply, so therefore it stands that the same objections of 2008 still stand. The details of the plan change, the restrictions to be imposed on landowners and the detailed maps that show how individual properties are affected are available on the Council's website www.upperhuttcity.com.

Since the last round of discussions a new association has been formed to assist the council to spread its plans to the citizens of Upper Hutt, and to give those same citizens advice and a joint voice when having to deal with the the council.

The Upper Hutt Town & Country Association is able to act as a vehicle to ensure that the council is made aware of the feelings of the community on a number of progressive and also contentious issues affecting Upper Hutt.

For information on the association please contact: uhtca.org.nz.

It's time to speak up again everyone, let the council know how you feel.


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- Upper Hutt Leader


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