Tag Archives: public meetings

Expressway past Levin is a high stakes game to HDC’s in-house Economic Development Board

From Veronica Harrod

Expressway past Levin a high stakes game

The land and property development agenda of Horowhenua District Council and council’s in-house economic development board would implode if the New Zealand Transport Agency decides not to proceed with the expressway past Levin demonstrating just how high the stakes are.

Otaki electorate MP Nathan Guy, a National Party MP, brought along National Party leader Simon Bridges and new transport minister Jami-Lee Ross to the second Levin public meeting Mr Guy has held in the last six weeks pushing for the expressway to proceed. Mr Bridges was the transport minister under the former National led Government.

The motivations of Mr Guy, in particular, are questionable in light of council’s role in land and property development which is entirely based on a November 2015 New Zealand Institute of Economic Research (NZIER) report commissioned by the council and the board called, “Investment in transport infrastructure: Effects on economic and demographic outlook.”

A July 6, 2016 council agenda states, “The assessment determined that the Wellington National Corridor investment represents a ‘free hit’ to Horowhenua, and creates an opportunity for the district to target population growth, employment, and economic activity levels significantly higher than both otherwise and previously expected.”

Council’s chief executive David Clapperton and economic development manager Shanon Grainger have repeatedly used forcasted growth statistics included in the NZIER report as a justification for rolling out an explosion in the number of land and development projects across the district.

Without the economic justification’s provided for in the NZIER report difficult questions would be asked of council about its close and secretive relationship with the economic development board, whose members have multimillion dollar interests in land and development and construction industries.

Council draft and consultation documents that rely on the expressway proceeding include council’s 20 year Long Term Plan, the Horowhenua growth strategy 2040 and the yet-to-be released Levin Town Centre Plan.

According to the Quotable Values database Mr Guy also has a significant amount of land and property interests in the north east sector of Levin at Koputaroa, one of the preferred expressway routes, which equates to at least $6 million over eight separate lots. The sale date of two further purchases he made in this sector is withheld from the Quotable Value database so have not been included.

If the expressway does proceed this means Mr Guy could potentially financially benefit from the expressway either through the sale of land confiscated under the Public Works Act or land and property development projects on land he owns next to the expressway route.

The decision made by NZTA could be a game changer for Horowhenua with residents facing unsustainable rates rises due to land and property development and associated negative environmental effects from an explosion in new builds connecting to an essential infrastructure council’s LTP states is ageing and end of life.

According to council’s 20 year draft and consultation documents there are no plans by council to consult the community on an economic development strategy moving into the future even though the public were not consulted on the now expired 2014-2017 economic development strategy that continues to be applied by the council.

Image may contain: 3 people, people smiling, suit
Photo, from left, Otaki MP Nathan Guy, former Prime Minister Bill English and former Horowhenua District Council mayor Brendan Duffy at an Electra After 5 event.

Findings and assessments from the NZIER report were presented at an “After 5” event on 24 March 2016.

The re-branded TPPA-11 with little changed is set to be signed in Chile on March 8th! See details of PUBLIC MEETINGS coming up

From It’s Our Future:

The TPPA-11 has had a rebranding to the CPTPPA (Comprehensive and Progressive Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement) – yet there is very little that is comprehensive or progressive about it, and very little has changed from the original TPPA.

The 11 nations that are party to the agreement will be meeting in Chile to sign the TPPA-11 on 8th March.

Come along and hear experts Professor Jane Kelsey, Dr Burcu Kilic, and Laila Harre speak in Auckland and Wellington, and Professor Jane Kelsey plus other speakers in Nelson, Christchurch and Dunedin about what the TPPA-11 will mean for New Zealand.

Event Details

Auckland:  

Monday 12 Feb, 6.30pm, Ellen Melville Centre, corner of High St and Freyberg Place, Auckland CBD
https://www.facebook.com/events/865008510327414/

Wellington: 

Tuesday 14 Feb, 6.30pm, Wesley Church, 75 Taranaki St, Wellington

https://www.facebook.com/events/1578636985577465/

Nelson: 

Tuesday 20 Feb, 7pm, Masonic Lodge, 107 Nile Street, Nelson
https://www.facebook.com/events/1387701038008990/

Christchurch:  

Wednesday 21 Feb, Knox Chruch, 28 Bealey Avenue, Christchurch
https://www.facebook.com/events/405312726576602/

Dunedin: 

Thursday, 22 Feb, Knox Chruch, 449 George St, Dunedin
https://www.facebook.com/events/987240044767300/

FIND OUT MORE ABOUT THE TPPA-11

 

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