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These videos are from the Mayor of Horowhenua, Michael Feyen. This is a ‘people’s Mayor’ who, like his former deputy Cr Ross Campbell, seems as much at home digging a haangi or drying dishes as he is wearing his mayoral chains. Just into his first term as Mayor however he had most of the councilors go public with a statement saying they supported not him but the CEO. For background to this situation read this article. His selected Deputy Mayor was unseated just hours into his term for speaking on social media about what looked like insider trading (and that hasn’t gone away, see Ross Campbell’s recent updates). This is all not surprising in light of the fact that these two have blown the whistle on quite a lot of things they saw as ‘not right’ in the course of their work in Council. Council pollution was another issue they highlighted. And so come this campaign the Mayor has had next to no coverage by media. Stone walled & neutered as he puts it himself, he has had a difficult uphill battle with a council that seems more intent on the business of property development than the interests both he & his former deputy would have liked to focus on. A keen supporter of retaining the Horowhenua community housing for instance, Mayor Feyen was removed from the housing committee because he had a conflict of interest! (ie he wanted to retain the housing … he had seen among other things opportunities for employment therein for the young people of the town, the same as his aspirations to pursue trapping of pests in lieu of the use of 1080 poison and of investing in the hemp growing industry). The list goes on, not a list shared largely by his colleagues. The housing sold for a song incidentally, to a property developer who then partnered with an established housing provider with promises to maintain the then status quo, however the contract ends in 2029 or thereabouts & just 18 months in they rents have already been raised.
“Effective growth is a partnership between council, central government and private enterprise….away from the unsettling glare of public commentary…” explains one HDC councilor regarding all of the public excluded meetings by which the assets are being sold. (See this article also). Developers are also exempt from paying development contributions to Council. And nowhere else in the country besides Horowhenua does a District Council have a CE and a Deputy Mayor who are both registered property developers.
Listen further to the Mayor’s latest update, expanding further on LG in NZ:
A highlighted issue with this election has been the difficulty involved in voting (see Veronica Harrod’s info). This was the same last election when many folk did not receive their voting papers and the voting info office was frequently either unmanned or closed. Curious isn’t it?
So amidst the LG so called ‘sustainable’ councils up and down our clean green land (not) we have a raft of property developers busy with their public private partnerships selling up all of the public assets for a song. Then there has been the ongoing escalating debts of Councils. That has been an issue in the Horowhenua as well … it’s ‘good debt’ we’re frequently told. Currently, right on election time, the Horowhenua CE is away on holiday and has been for several weeks. This is the CE who was intercepting the emails of his staff for ‘safety reasons’ it was touted. Who paid a secret payment to a local iwi without the Mayor’s knowledge. Mayor Feyen is himself a staunch supporter of true partnership with Tangata Whenua & honouring the principles of the Treaty. Currently the Council’s real commitment appears to be mainly lipservice.
Please have a listen to his videos anyway & peruse the info on our Local Government Watch Horowhenua page. That has not been updated of late unfortunately, there is much more than is documented there. For more recent & all info see HDC in ‘categories. See also Cr Ross Campbell’s page on FB, the Mayor’s page (Michael Feyen) and Veronica Harrod’s also. Veronica is an investigative journalist who has researched quite extensively the activities of this Council.
Last year we posted news that HDC were considering public private partnerships to dispose of council assets. They seem to think we all came down in the last shower. Here we have a CE saying “but it was not yet known how profits would be spent or invested… ” Seriously … this is the person who we just heard paid local iwi secretly as per quote from Kapiti Independent News:
“Chief executive David Clapperton made the confidential agreement to provide at least $880,500 to Te Runanga o Raukawa on the proviso the Runanga withdraw its objection to council’s resource consent application to make discharges from the Foxton Waste Water Treatment Plant to Matakarapa Island”.
…& we’ve heard nary a whisper of that since it leaked out!… who also all but gifted $1.86 million of council assets (aka pensioner flats) to Willis & Bond property developers. (The auditor General’s fine with that we heard recently so I imagine it’s all go with the current giveaways as well). May as well say haere ra to this lot friends. The millions of dollars of assets I’m talking about, not the generous people who are giving them away. As we speak the community/memorial halls are up for grabs in Foxton & elsewhere. This looks distinctly like a land grab as eloquently described by the late Joan Veon who observed developments in the UN plans for so called ‘sustainable’ development that is clearly everything but sustainable … Public Private Partnerships ‘an arm of the world’s growing corporatocracy, the bottom line is to take control of the assets of government (links below). At the Agenda 21/30 pages (main menu, top of page) you can read NZer Dr Naomi Jacobs’ ebook on topic inspired by the rates hikes & property losses in Mangawhai.
Here is Stuff’s article:
Millions of dollars of council assets will be transferred into independent hands to help boost the Horowhenua economy.
The Horowhenua New Zealand Trust could be operating in the next month, chairman Cam Lewis said. It will own and manage property and assets given to it by the Horowhenua District Council, and promote the district as a place to do business.
The trust would benefit residents by increasing jobs in the district, but it was not yet known how profits would be spent or invested, he said.
Council staff said property to be transferred would only include “non-core properties”. The council owns almost $28 million in non-core property and more than $100m in assets.
LINKS TO OUR PREVIOUS ARTICLES:
To look at the wider picture, as per Joan Veon’s video if you watched it, see our Agenda 21/30 pages (NZ in particular) at the main menu. This is a global trend with global governance in mind.
Slugging it out in the Horowhenua
What is happening in the small neck of the woods called the Horowhenua is a power struggle between conflicting agendas.
On one side of the boxing ring stands Horowhenua District Council Mayor Michael Feyen, supported by councillor Ross Campbell holding the towel and the water bottle in the background.
On the other side of the boxing ring stands deputy mayor Wayne Bishop with his supporters; the eight remaining councillors (although there are signs the amount of blood being spilled is getting too much for some).
The ref is the CEO!
Unfortunately for Mayor Feyen the referee of the boxing match is council’s chief executive David Clapperton, which is why the result will always seem to be in Cr Bishop’s favour because both Cr Bishop and Mr Clapperton have mutually beneficial interests. Mayor Feyen alluded to the source of the power struggle in comments to the media when he said, “There seems to be much at stake for some in council…and that he had ‘severe concerns’ about conflicts of interest within the council.”