Mayor hits fish hook on camera
"I wasn't aware I was appearing in a promotional video for King Salmon"CATHIE BELL
Marlborough Mayor Alistair Sowman says that, with hindsight, being filmed for an interview included in a King Salmon promotional video broadcast on YouTube was a mistake.
Mr Sowman and several other people on the streets of Blenheim were filmed talking about King Salmon's proposed expansion in the Marlborough Sounds. The interviews have been used as part of a video on YouTube by King Salmon, encouraging people to submit in favour of their plans.
People are able to make submissions to the Environmental Protection Authority, which will decide the fate of King Salmon's application to expand into areas of the Sounds where aquaculture is not allowed under the Marlborough District Council's district plan. The council opposes King Salmon's application because it breaches the district plan.
Mr Sowman said he was stopped on the street at random, as were other people, and asked if he was aware of the application and if he had a question he'd want to ask King Salmon.
The cameraman didn't know who he was, he said.
"I wasn't aware I was appearing in a promotional video for King Salmon ... They did ask if I was happy for it to be used. I signed a disclaimer. I wasn't aware it was going on YouTube."
In hindsight, he said, he wouldn't do it again.
"I need to be more careful with comments I make and who I make them to ... It was careless of me.
"I should have checked the grounds for the question more carefully."
He said he didn't see it as a big deal and didn't have a major issue with it, saying he was surprised people had such an interest in his appearance in the video and that there was criticism of it. The Marlborough Express received one phone call questioning the mayor's appearance in the video.
Mr Sowman did not receive payment or any favours for being filmed. "Definitely no."
People were aware of the council view on the application and he didn't see his video appearance as giving support, he said.
"Council made a decision and I support that decision. We all do.
"Council isn't against salmon farming, it's about where and the precedent it could set."
Public submissions on the proposal close at 5pm tomorrow. Submissions can be made by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- The Marlborough Express