OPINION: South Port's $6.5 million profit should have been very good news to Environment Southland ratepayers.
In years past this would have signalled a lower general rate demand, as South Port profit was always used in past years to offset the general rate demand of all the residents without favour to any group. This year unfortunately this has changed.
The council voted in favour of giving to the dairy industry $700,000 of South Port's profit as subsidy against the differential rate they were charged to pay this year.
In its document of intent Environment Southland states it has a policy that the user (or abuser) will pay for any pollution damage for which they have been identified as responsible.
This policy was the reason the recent differential rate was charged to dairy industry operatives.
The income gained was to be targeted at the clean-up of pollution previously identified by Environment Southland as coming from the dairy industry.
The councillors who voted for the $700,000 subsidy in favour of dairy industry only, have failed with the oath they took as councillors. They gave an oath of assurance that in governance they would not support favouritism of any minority, over the majority of Southland's community.
The councillors who voted in favour of this subsidy to dairy holdings are Marion Miller, Neville Cook and (all of whom are unopposed in the election) Ali Timms, Grant Hubber, Nicol Horrell, Peter Jones and Ross Cockburn.
Pauline McIntosh is a candidate for Environment Southland. - Editor
- The Southland Times