Toilet plans blocked up again

Colin Johnston
Colin Johnston

Waitara's community leaders are frustrated their town's $147,000 cemetery toilet has been flushed by the New Plymouth District Council.

After year of petitioning and pleading, Waitara residents found relief in August when the council's monitoring committee decided time was right for a toilet at the Waitara Cemetery.

But weeks later the $147,000 loo decision was revoked by Mayor Harry Duynhoven and the issue will go back into debate for another round.

The cemetery may still get its toilet but with the council under public scrutiny to reduce costs wherever it can, the toilet of choice will likely be a $78,000 permacrete one or a $131,000 Novaloo model.

The mayor argued none of the district's 19 cemeteries had public toilets and they weren't needed anyway.

At a community board meeting, chairman Colin Johnston expressed his unhappiness with the council's decision to revoke the cemetery toilets.

"It's effectively killed the project."

He said the board had accepted there was nothing to do but wait for the outcome of the next debate.

Mr Duynhoven said he was sure the loo would be a hot topic at the next council meeting.

"What's good enough for New Plymouth is good enough for Waitara."

The decision to go ahead with the project came after 10 years of lobbying by Waitara residents and a 305 signature petition for the loo being presented during submissions on the council's 2012-2022 long term plan.

The $147,000 model is the same as those already built at places such as East End, Waiwhakaiho, Back Beach and the Wind Wand car park. The toilets are pricey because they must be able to withstand vandalism and fire.

Taranaki Daily News