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Local boards and waste recovery -- A board member’s perspective Waitakere Ranges Local Board member JUDY LAWLEY urges

Tatler readers to have a say on the Board’s first three year plan. Close off date is August 8.

Tatler readers live across two Auckland Council local boards, the Whau and the Waitakere Ranges. And just in case you haven’t yet caught up with the ‘new look’ of local government in Auckland it goes like this. The Auckland Council has two parts. The 21 local boards stretch

from Rodney to Franklin and are designed to maintain local democracy. The second part is the governing body of 20 councillors plus the mayor. Those 20 councillors are elected from 12 Wards - for the West area (very roughly the old Waitakere and the Avondale area of the old

Auckland City) we have the Waitakere Ward with two councillors and the Whau Ward with just one. Wards exist for election purposes only, so we can forget all about them for most of the three year political cycle. During July the local boards launched our first ever draft local board

plans. Draft is the operative word here. These plans are little more than 10 pages of a broad brush framework that sets out the key priorities for decision-making in our communities over the next three years. I hope we receive thousands of submissions from you so we can

get some flesh on the bare bones we have put together so far. We need to know whether you agree with the suggested priorities and we particularly need to know what specific things need attention and development. Submission forms went to letter boxes during July and the close-

off date of August 8 is very tight. Whether you have just one thing to say or a host of burning issues please fill in the form - it conveniently folds into a stamped envelope. Or go to www.aucklandcouncil.govt. nz/haveyoursay. As you would expect in this new organisation, many policies that the


old councils had in place are now being rewritten. One of the first policies off the block is the development of one method for waste recovery for the whole of Auckland. The boards are currently having input into this work contributing from what we have learned in Waitakere. For example, we believe the Waitakere inorganic collection system, just two years young, is working well and we recommend it. No more ugly piles of rubbish that are made huge and costly by outsider dumping. Bins rather than bags are being considered and there is strong emphasis on increased recycling and public education. Overflowing landfills taking up valuable land and causing contamination, plastic bags clogging our oceans and killing fish and birds, oil and chemicals in the stormwater systems and flowing to the sea, massive waste of products that could be reused by taking advantage of new technology - these are just some of the issues we must address. Waste recovery is not part of our local board plans as it is an Auckland-wide issue. But I certainly expect it to be at the top of the list of the first 10-year Auckland Plan that we will see towards the end of the year. The first draft of this plan was released some months ago with the lofty title of Auckland Unleashed. Like the draft local board plans it is available at libraries, local board offices and on the council website.

Judy Lawley can be reached or on 837 7107 / 027 293 1747.

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