Sunday, 18 March 2018

Horowhenua boss seeks new contract

Wheeler’s Corner
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 Wheelers Corner special edition March 2018

1. Ever heard of David Clapperton, no? Well he is the CEO of Horowhenua District Council [yes Horowhenua is a Maori word].
CEO David Clapperton.
The township of Levin is where he is based. It is a nice little spot, it has roads and shops and sports fields but it has one of the most polluted lakes in Aotearoa [NZ]. 

It also continues to pour waste matter into this mistreated little bit of our fair land.

It [HDC] also appears to have real democracy problems, it bans individuals from Council meetings, and believe it or not it even bans elected Councillor’s and it even once banned it’s elected Mayor from chatting with the unelected CEO or his staff.

It would appear that maybe a home made local junta runs the place, a combination of soundless and meek councilors, a police force that is inclined to only hear one side of the story, and an all controlling and uncontrollable god like CEO.   

 Former Horowhenua District Councillor Anne Hunt tells Chief Executive it is time to go.
David Clapperton, who is currently the chief executive of the dysfunctional Horowhenua District Council, has announced that he intends to reapply for the vacancy when the term of his contract expires during July 2018.

But Mrs Hunt who served on this council from 2004 until 2013 has sent Mr Clapperton a letter telling him that he should reconsider his future, because he has placed the Levin community at extreme risk.

Her main bone of contention was the decision to disconnect Phil Taueki’s water supply during November 2016 and refuse to connect it despite Mr Taueki’s hospitalisation. Mr Clapperton claims he disconnected Mr Taueki’s water at the request of the Lake confirms that the Judge who appointed these Lake Horowhenua trustees had failed to declare a conflict of interests with Matt Sword, a former lawyer who chairs this lake trust.

The Council is currently applying to renew Levin’s wastewater discharge consent that lapses this year, and also plans to apply for resource consent to discharge Levin’s stormwater into the privately-owned and culturally-sensitive Lake Horowhenua.

Bruce Gordon as Chair of Horizons Regional Council had warned the Council seven years ago that it would need resource consent to continue discharging Levin’s stormwater into this lake. Lake Horowhenua is rated one of this country’s most polluted lakes.

Mr Taueki is not only a direct descendent of Treaty signatory, but also a beneficial owner of Lake Horowhenua and the chair of Hokio Trusts that owns land adjoining Levin’s wastewater disposal site.

At a recent meeting to discuss resource consents, Mr Taueki warned council officers that he was not prepared to work with council while Mr Clapperton remains chief executive.
Mr Taueki’s health has suffered as a result of the unsanitary conditions at his home on ancestral land at Lake Horowhenua, but refuses to be forced out by tactics such as this prolonged water disconnection. Mrs Hunt says that even in India, a High Court has ruled that a municipal authority cannot disconnect water, simply because water is an essential of life. Press release ends:

Read this from last year,

This shows clearly that Mr Clapperton has very little understanding of what democracy in local government means. In my view he should not be reemployed by the council this is their chance to bring Horowhenua back from the brink of legalised dictatorship. Present Councillor’s need to find the courage to stand tall and reinstate the back bone needed to bring Horowhenua into the 21st century. 

You may feel inclined to let Mr Clapperton know that you feel that he should stand down and let a new and open minded person bring some fresh air into the Horowhenua District Councils much needed reforms.Just contact the HDC via any of these means:

Post: Private Bag 4002, Levin 5540
Levin Office: 126 Oxford Street, Levin 5510

Peter J Wheeler

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