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Mackenzie Contender for Ecan "farmer Bronwen Murray" Rob Kerr Timaru Herald redorbit Texas 31Jul07
Battle joined for Canterbury region "Mayoralty campaigns capture most public attention during local government elections, but regional councils also wield significant power. PETER LUKE looks at Canterbury's battle. Roll back three years and the Environment Canterbury (ECan) election was a mundane affair. This year it should be a cracker. The combination of some high-profile issues, regional rivalries and strong personalities means the contest for the 14 seats around the regional council table will be intense. Water has emerged as the single biggest issue. It has replaced air quality, perhaps because of the low number of smoggy nights this year, the success of the Clean Heat strategy and ECan's recent decision to finally sign off its air plan. Within Christchurch, this week's opinion poll commissioned by The Press found that 50 per cent of respondents believed water was a very important issue and another 30% rated it as quite important. This is reinforced in the city by the emergence of the Save our Water grouping, which is running four candidates. The issue has been brought to the fore by the Central Plains Water scheme, rows over irrigation entitlements, the expansion of dairying and fears that Christchurch's drinking supplies could be at risk of contamination. The new council must also try to patch up relations with its southern regions - the "southern tribes", as one councillor archly refers to them. Waitaki councillor June Slee, who is not seeking re-election, has lambasted ECan for having a "cavalier" attitude to rural issues. This followed the representation review that absorbed Waitaki, which was by far the smallest seat in population terms, into a South Canterbury constituency. ECan has plans to set up a consultative committee for South Canterbury, but there have been calls to legally challenge the abolition of the Waitaki constituency or to form a breakaway regional council there. Among other issues that could weigh on voters' minds are the failure of Target Pest, which will cost ECan almost $2 million, and rates rises. Reflecting sensitivity over rates, ECan chairman Sir Kerry Burke has announced that the council is looking at imposing more of the costs of water management on irrigators rather than general ratepayers. ECan received a dismal E rating in an unscientific Federated Farmers survey. But Burke puts more weight on an independently conducted poll of 500 residents across the region that found 68% believed they were getting good value for their ECan rates. Personal rivalries between Burke and Alec Neill, the Independent Citizens member who thought he should have Burke's job, have been a feature of the present term, along with claim and counterclaim over the influence of the Christchurch 2021 faction at ECan. An underlying theme in this election is the way the votes fall and how that will determine whether Burke will have the numbers to retain the chairmanship. Unlike the mayoralty, which is chosen by direct vote of all ratepayers, the chairman of a regional council is elected by those sitting around the council table. Within Christchurch, the city's two traditional factions enjoy a duopoly. Christchurch 2021 cleaned up the six seats in the north, south and east Christchurch constituencies, with the Independent Citizens taking both positions in the west. The Independent Citizens groups this year ambitiously signalled that it would try to end 2021's dominance in Christchurch, which would erode Burke's support as chairman. It is running a full slate of candidates. The faction is critical of ECan spending and rates rises, as shown by some feisty letters in The Press, matched by some equally spirited replies from Burke. Two constituencies to watch closely are those in north and west Christchurch. National MP Nicky Wagner is stepping down in the west but it is by no means a done deal that the Independent Citizens will again win both seats. Ticket leader Alec Neill has the advantages of incumbency and a high profile for a regional councillor, partly due to locking horns with Burke. Whether he is joined on the council by his running mate, Rosanne Hawarden, could depend on the voter pulling power of Pat Harrow, the retiring Independent Citizens city councillor who is running as an independent for ECan. The Christchurch north contest features two other past or present city councillors wanting to make the transition to regional government, and they should mount a strong challenge to the aspirations of 2021, whose candidate to replace the retiring Judy Waters is John Knox. Carole Evans and Denis O'Rourke are campaigning as the "experienced independents" and both are familiar figures in Christchurch. Evans has a long history of involvement in local government and is the city's Deputy Mayor. O'Rourke is a former city councillor with a reputation for being prickly at times but who also brought intellectual grunt to the council table. Both emphasise that they are not running as part of a political faction, and, in a constituency where traffic is a major issue, they are carrying the flag for a light-rail system. Adding to the uncertainties about this election is Save Our Water, whose candidates in the east and west Christchurch seats could leak votes from the other factions, especially 2021. Just south of the city is another key contest. Eugenie Sage is running as an independent in Selwyn-Banks Peninsula, but her background includes being a spokeswoman for the Forest and Bird Society. In this two-horse race she is taking on incumbent Bill Woods, a veteran of Canterbury politics. Sage has impeccable environmental credentials with the reputation of being constructive and bright, with common sense and a keen appreciation of water issues. But she is up against a local body politician of the old school in Woods. He has attracted controversy over his high mileage claims at ECan and his blunt outbursts about Forest and Bird. The Ellesmere region of the constituency has migrated to the Rakaia seat, where incumbent Angus McKay is unopposed. Woods told The Press this week that the mileage issue had cost him dearly in this election. "I'm finished," was his view, but this is a politician who thrives on his image as a battler and his rumours of his political demise might be deliberately exaggerated. Some voters could interpret Woods' high mileage claims as an example of a politician getting out to constituents. This constituency includes some of the faster-growing urban-fringe areas of Selwyn, but there is still a 55-44 rural-urban breakdown - and environmental campaigners are not necessarily election favourites in the farming hinterland. For Sage, the key could be her support among lifestyle block fringe residents. In North Canterbury, another experienced local body politician is the odds-on favourite for an ECan seat. Jo Kane is the Deputy Mayor of the Waimakariri District and a Canterbury District Health Board member, and she is tipped to join incumbent Ross Little on the council. In South Canterbury, councillor Mark Oldfield is expected to be returned, but it could be close between Tom O'Connor and Bronwen Murray." from The Press 29Sep07
Shock defeats shake up ECan factions Joanna Norris Press 13Oct07
Water fears change ECan, Woods out Paul Gorman Press 15Oct07
Kane bids for ECan chair Robyn Bristow Press 17Oct07
ECan rival criticised on forum re Bob Kirk & Paul Scott, Charlie Gates Robyn Bristow Press 18Oct07
Explaining the science of Canterbury's water "Scientists hope to put controversy to one side and look at the hard science of Christchurch's groundwater and drinking-water system in a public seminar on October 25" NZ Hydrological Society Tim Cronshaw Press 19Oct07
Burke wins tight contest to lead council Beck Eleven Press 25Oct07 + Re-election of Burke 'end of ECan in South' David Bruce ODT
Environment Canterbury Council Committees PR 12Nov07
Breakaway talks upset "Hurunui Mayor Garry Jackson is 'deeply concerned' at moves by southern Canterbury councils to break away from Environment Canterbury" Press 01Dec07
Major dairy farm on market for M$29 Neal Wallace ODT 4Dec07
ECan called impediment to growth John Keast Press 19Dec07
Murray tops absentee list of ECan councillors Press 5Jan09
Regional councils 'failing' "Regional councils are ineffective and some have been captured by farmer interests, says a Government environmental adviser. Guy Salmon, executive director of the Ecologic Foundation, handed out a stinging review of the performance of regional councils at yesterday's environmental summit in Auckland. Salmon was a member of the technical advisory group to Environment Minister Nick Smith that recommended abolishing regional councils as part of the minister's streamlining of the Resource Management Act. At the time, Smith's stated that recommendation went beyond the group's terms of reference. Yesterday, Salmon told about 300 people at the Environmental Defence Society's Reform in Paradise conference that regional councils had failed to meet their objectives. In some regions, they had been captured by farmers and farming interests, which meant efforts to manage water as a sustainable resource were also failing. 'Farmers have firm control over a great deal of regional councils. Is this governance formula ever going to deliver us clean water?' Canterbury has 54 per cent of New Zealand's resource consent-allocated water and 67 per cent of the country's irrigated land. Salmon said regional councils suffered from a lack of profile and lack of political authority to implement decisions. 'Even the best of them seem to be failing. We have to wonder if the political authority is there.' He recommended the Government's planned Environmental Protection Authority have regional offices, with two-tiers of government central government and district or city councils. Environment Southland chief executive Ciaran Keogh took issue with Salmon's comments, blaming the Government and the lack of national policy statements and national environmental standards for the regional councils' lack of direction. "The top layer is missing-in-action. We get no support.' However, Salmon told The Press regional authorities had to do better than blame the Government. Environment Canterbury chief executive Bryan Jenkins told the summit regional councils had a future. He wanted them to add 'the role of facilitator of sustainable development to the statutory role as regulator for environmental protection'." Press 9Jun09
Editorial: Diet time for tubby Ecan "difficult teenager is now an adult and it needs to go on a diet.. big is not necessarily better.. region should be chopped off and Ecan's responsibilities delegated to a single unitary authority for South Canterbury" Timaru Herald 13Jun09
ECan 'hung out to dry' by central govt Press 16Jun09
Editorial: Besieged ECan faces big challenges "worst record of any of the nation's 85 councils in handling resource consents within legal time limits.. must reclaim the goodwill of the region.. by demonstrating its relevance and by dispelling the notion that it exists as a block to economic progress" Press 20Jun09
Deference to Maori 'apartheid' "councillor Pat Harrow, of Christchurch" The Press 13Aug09 & Canty 'lagging behind' in water allocation "Agricultural Minister David Carter.. said antagonism between parties had hindered Canterbury and it lagged behind areas such as Tasman, where communities already had water-storage schemes. The Government's land and water forum and stage two of its Resource Management Act amendments would help sort out the allocation mess" The Press 14Aug09
ECan councillors accuse colleague of email bullying 26Aug09 + Burke's future under review 27Aug09 + Vote deals blow to Burke supporters 28Aug09 Press + Editorial: Sir Kerry should go now Timaru Herald + Burke's future hangs in balance & ECan's besieged Burke says he won't go willingly 29Aug09
Cantebury Regional Council Chairman faces challenge "vote of no confidence" Checkpoint radionz 28Aug09 + Kane on CTV NewsMakers youtube 28Aug09 & Burke on Today in Canterbury News 04Sep09
Charges to fund water shake-up The Press & Water plan will force changes on ECan & ECan councillor resigns 03Sep09 & Kane resigns as impending vote on chairman divides council & New law needed to enable water strategy, says Burke 04Sep09 + Locals get more sway over water & ECan faces mayors' scrutiny Timaru Herald
ECan councillor expected to face disciplinary review The Press 08Sep09 & Canterbury drought likely, say forecasters "three months of below-average rainfall.. 53 per cent of the long-term average. Temperature records have also been broken as warm northwesterly winds bring temperatures more like summer after the country's warmest August on record. Timaru had its hottest September day in 124 years" 16Sep09 & Meeting to discuss 'threatening' emails delayed 17Sep09 & Auditor-General writes to ECan councillors 21Sep09 & Burke distances himself "Water is emerging as a key issue behind the challenge" & ECan under fire over $1m water study & Rakaia wild-card may snare top job & Editorial: ECan crossroads Press 22Sep09 + Hide orders ECan probe Timaru Herald 23Sep09 & Aust beetle in Chch parks "red-headed cockchafer beetle destroys pasture and has spread into Christchurch City for the first time since landing in Canterbury in 1963" Press
Ecan says 'e can't 29Sep09
Friday deadline on water conflicts "Auditor-General's Office.. believes there is some resistance from some of the councillors involved in responding to the request for information" Press 6Oct09 & Water-use probe widens "Angus McKay joins Pat Harrow, Mark Oldfield & Bronwen Murray facing scrutiny for potential conflicts of interest in water use" 28Oct09
Protesters make waves over plan Hurunui Dambusters "Russel Norman told protesters in Victoria Square that the fight had just begun. "This thing needs to be stopped," he said. "They have taken the last of our wild rivers, the last of our special places and they're not going to take any more." Norman said the project's backers were frightened of people who had rallied against it. Environment Canterbury councillor Eugenie Sage said the Hurunui should run free from Lake Sumner to the sea" Press 17Oct09
Govt initiates Environment Canterbury performance review Nick Smith & Rodney Hide 28Oct09
ECan considers lead role in regional oil security Press 9Dec09 & Report about ECan delayed 21Dec09 & Editorial: Blow to ECan "Water is such a sensitive issue in Canterbury that it is imperative that decisions with respect to this valuable resource are made by Environment Canterbury with scrupulous attention to the legality of the process. As the report this week of the Auditor-General, Lyn Provost, makes clear, this was not the case with respect to four regional councillors when ECan debated and voted on water charges in June. It is a report which could prove to be the last nail in ECan's coffin" 24Dec09 & ECan chairman in spat with chairman past "'It could hardly be more serious, undermining the integrity of the council's decision-making process. It resulted from decisions of the [four] councillors to take part, acting contrary to the best advice possible,' Burke wrote" Timaru Herald
Prosecute ECan four, says local govt group "The Office of the Auditor-General ruled that Crs Pat Harrow, Angus McKay, Bronwen Murray and Mark Oldfield, all of whom have water consents and irrigation interests, were conflicted by taking part in debates and voting on proposed water charge.. Council Watch, which represents residents' associations nationwide and advocates better community involvement in local affairs, says its research indicates a widespread and systemic lack of compliance with the law by councils.. Sanction by public report was not strong enough" 28Dec09 + Opinion: Auditor General Must Prosecute Errant Councillors links etc
Editorial: No rushing on Ecan "a proposal for change would have to show how a new form of regional council would better serve the region than Ecan.. careful assessment of exactly what then ew costs would be is vital before any change is seriously contemplated" Timaru Herald 01Jan09
Water issues hang on reviews of ECan "Environment Canterbury's fate is high on the Government's agenda as it heads into a new year. Environment Minister Nick Smith said what happened to ECan would be pivotal to a range of other water and environmental issues being considered this year.. investigations were spurred by dissatisfaction with ECan's processing of resource consents, its efforts to develop a framework for managing the region's natural resources and its relationships with the region's other councils. The resource management review, initially due last month, will cost taxpayers about $83,000 and the governance review about $36,000. ECan received more bad news just before Christmas with the Auditor-General's ruling that water consent-holders Crs Pat Harrow, Angus McKay, Bronwen Murray and Mark Oldfield were conflicted and broke the law by taking part in discussions about proposed water charges. It is also unclear how the new Environmental Protection Authority, a new Canterbury water management authority and talk of a greater Christchurch council will affect ECan.. 'I think 2010 will be a pretty significant year in terms of water.. The sharp edge of water issues is in Canterbury. The question mark hanging over ECan's capacity to deal with these issues.. marks the ECan issue as part of the core issues'" The Press 13Jan10
ECan surplus unlikely to hold as bills roll in "financial summary for the six months ending December 2009, the regional council had recorded a $1.3 million surplus – it had budgeted for a loss of $870,000. Revenue was $57.6 million, against $56.3 million of expenditure. ECan financial services director Wayne Thomas downplayed the result. "I think we would expect to have something of a surplus for the first six months, as it's usually quieter,' he said. 'There are still a large number of programmes to get started. 'We are waiting for the implementation of the Canterbury Water Management strategy, which will cost about $20 million.' Mr Thomas said there had been several other contributing factors, such as bad weather delaying a significant amount of its monitoring work, while $294,000 in surpluses for 'Supergold' discount cards for senior bus users would be offset once all the expenses were received. Yearly uptake numbers for the Clean Heat programme looked set to reach a target of 3000 in Christchurch, but lower-than-expected numbers elsewhere accounted for part of the surplus. 'Everything comes home to roost closer to the end of the financial year in June.'" 2Feb10
$2.4m recovery of costs backed "Controversial plans to recover $2.39 million in water-management costs from consent-holders are a step closer after a decisive vote by Environment Canterbury (ECan) councillors yesterday. Rising irrigation demand and declining water quality in Canterbury over recent years have driven the regional council to conduct more scientific investigation and monitoring. This has fuelled calls for some of the cost to be borne by those who benefit from water takes and discharges. ECan councillors voted 11-2 in favour of a 30 per cent recovery, or $2.39m, of its water investigation and monitoring from water consent-holders. Only Mark Oldfield and Pat Harrow voted against it. The controversial charging plan will now go out for public consultation as part of ECan's annual plan, with the final budget being decided in June. Cr Bronwen Murray was excluded from the discussion by the Auditor-General's office because of a conflict of interest, but Oldfield, Harrow and Angus McKay were granted dispensation to take part. The trio asked most of the questions at yesterday's meeting. Almost 60 per cent of the money will come from Ashburton, Waihora-Ellesmere and Waipara-Waimakariri. Consent-holders for domestic stormwater and septic tanks will not be charged under the changes. Yesterday's vote in favour of the proposal contrasted with the 7-7 split in the council last June, after which Alec Neill toppled then chairman Sir Kerry Burke and two Government investigations were launched into ECan's performance and governance. An ECan-led working group of Crs Jo Kane, Eugenie Sage and McKay endorsed the charging plan after public meetings and submissions." The Press 12Feb10
Mayors feel 'vindicated' by review "..Chairman Alec Neill said the council processed 90 per cent of consents within the statutory time frame in the year to January and it was 'business as usual' for the 14 elected representatives and 500 staff. ECan chief executive Bryan Jenkins said the report showed that apart from water the council was leading the country in several areas, such as air quality. But Cr Mark Oldfield, who resigned as water committee chairman over a 'lack of progress', said the report was 'comprehensive and accurate' and ECan was not listening to its community. Cr Rik Tindall said appointing commissioners to run the organisation would be an 'asset grab' from Wellington and the Government needed to justify why councillors should be dismissed. 'There is always room for improvement in every organisation, at every level, and we'll do our best to play that game, toe the line and up our output on behalf of the public that elected us. But it is the public that elected us and I think that if central planning from Wellington is going to be a substitute for local decision-making, that's a retrograde step and I do not think the public will accept it.' Former ECan chairman Sir Kerry Burke said the review seemed to be part of a Government agenda, something he would put to ministers next week. Cr Carole Evans was shocked by the report's recommendations which she said had not caught up with changes already made at ECan.." The Press 22Feb10
Blame governments for mess - Johnson "..Johnson, the organisation's first chairman, said successive governments had failed to provide regional councils with a clear direction on natural resources policy and standards since the Resource Management Act (RMA) was created in 1991. 'It left individual councils to scrum around to work through [the] different scenarios,' he said. 'In hindsight, this is the major reason why it's [ECan] in this difficulty now.'" The Press 24Feb10
Key coy on ECan's future "'I do want to see that situation resolved in Christchurch because I do want to see us irrigating more of the Canterbury plains.' Key said he would need to be convinced that removing democratically elected councillors was in the region's best interests" The Press 23Feb10
ECan councillor vows not to stand again "Mark Oldfield.. In the wake of a damning review of the regional council, ECan chairman Alec Neill has said an election in October is unlikely and he expected commissioners to be called in to replace councillors. However Mr Oldfield has said he will not stand regardless of what happens. 'I would not stand tomorrow if there was an election. It was always my game plan to only stand for 10 years and I did not intend to stand three years ago, but I did because I was frustrated with the lack of progress and wanted to effect some change. 'I did resign from the water portfolio out of frustration and actually considered resigning as a councillor last year but felt I had an obligation to represent the people who had voted for me for the full term.'" Timaru Herald 23Feb10
Greens attack water review as acting in farmers' interests "Mr Key said he had confidence in Mr Creech who had put aside personal interests in this matter as he had in the past. 'What I can say is that having read the report about Environment Canterbury the level of dysfunctionality currently operating in that organisation was very alarming to me,' Mr Key said. Any benefit that came to the dairy industry from better irrigation would have to balanced. 'It is a statement of fact-that is, if Canterbury and the areas around Canterbury and Otago were to have greater irrigation, it would lend itself to greater economic output and therefore it will of course be in their interest. But any increase in production in dairying would have to be matched by care and concern for the environment.' There was pressure on the aquifers in the Canterbury region. 'The way to resolve that is potentially to build greater water storage, so that less pressure is on those aquifers, and less of the water that currently pours out to sea continues to do so.'" NZPA 23Feb10
MPs in Chch to meet ECan chiefs The Press 24Feb10
Angry councillors blast mayors The Press 26Feb10
ECan offers deal to avert sacking Timaru Herald 4Mar10
The Environment Canty report - and next the tsunami surge? "Hawke's Bay also faces conflicting demands on its water resources (and a high incidence of drought) but has operative plans in place, demonstrating that it is possible under the RMA.. Having commissioned the Review, the Government will act on it: it simply can't ignore it. It may not pick up every recommendation and it may consider that the Review's preferred option is a step too far. But it will intervene to ensure that the hard decisions are taken - and it is likely that the water management model which is developed in Canterbury will become the template for the rest of the country. Getting the policy right there - while not leaving Canterbury uncertain for too long - is a very big challenge" 9Mar10
Dirty sea water 'not result of outfall tests' "Council city water and waste unit manager Mark Christison said the allegations were 'completely inaccurate'. Ongoing pressure tests proved there were no leaks or cracking, he said. The pipeline's marine section was made of polythene and the micro tunnel was reinforced concrete. Christison said the 'naturally occurring' brown foam was caused by wave action. Any smells came from sea lettuce buildup at the nearby estuary. Environment Canterbury (ECan) officials agreed. An ECan spokeswoman said any leaked discharge would not be brown." The Press 10Mar10 & Region's pylon group mulls national body Timaru Herald
Cows cause three vehicles to crash "wandering herd of 20 dairy cattle in an early morning crash near Makihihi.. thankful no-one was killed, though five cows died and several were injured" Timaru Herald 11Mar10 & Discoloured river water worries resident "greeny-brown sludge in the Waitaki River is causing concern about possible contamination.. discolouration and strange material in the water had been occurring 24 hours a day for several months.. concerned enough to ring Environment Canterbury's pollution hotline several times, but to no avail" + Waitaki stream 'not neglected' "likely to be a byproduct of irrigation, but the history of the stream is not one of neglect, Environment Canterbury says.. catchment-wide border dyke or flood irrigation, largely on dairying properties.. past regular water sampling showed the brown discoloration was caused by dissolved organic carbon that had leached from the soil.. problem is generally worse during the summer months when there is more irrigation occurring and more leaching potential.. extensive re-bordering and re-levelling works to improve irrigation performance and in more recent years the stream had fallen within the Clean Streams Accord.. one of five national dairy industry research streams" 12Mar10
Rates to rise 8.7% & Council makes staff changes & Water schemes backed & Parker supports taking over certain ECan duties The Press 12Mar10
Christchurch rally to back ECan water management "umbrella group - Canterbury: Our Water (COW).. spokeswoman Rosalie Snoyink.. Monday was the day Cabinet was expected to release its decision on ECan's future. 'We in Canterbury have every reason to be very concerned. The report was done very rapidly and without public mandate'" Otago Daily Times 20Mar10 + MP fails to convince water protesters "concerns that national control of local water issues was 'a threat to democracy'" Press 22Mar10
CTV news Today In Canterbury 4Mar10 Jo Kane on 'negotiated agreement' & 22Mar10 Canterbury OurWater rally
Ecan's performance under the spotlight NBR 30Mar10
Environment Canterbury (Temporary Commissioners and Improved Water Management) Act 2010 by Nick Smith First Reading 30Mar10 + Anderson Lloyd summary + Editorial: The axe falls The Press 31Mar10
Warning of big battle ahead over Canterbury water "government-appointed commissioners to take over from elected regional councillors and manage all water issues, including water conservation orders. The executive director of the Ecologic Foundation, Guy Salmon, says the change is disappointing. He and other environmentalists fear it will be easier for irrigators and developers to take water from protected rivers" radionz 03Apr10
Sacked ECan board was no damp squib "Clearly the Key government loves to create havoc and enemies over local government and natural resources.. So much for collaboration, the only hope for sustainable water use" ROD ORAM Sunday Star Times 04Apr10
Rates revolt rallying cry by 90-year-old former councillor " The council could only penalise late payers 10 per cent.. That was less than $10 in her case. 'If enough people do it, they wouldn't be able to continue,' Ruby Fowler said" The Press 12Apr10 + ECan pair considering challenge for CCC "ECan deputy chairwoman Jo Kane and former chairman Sir Kerry Burke gave valedictory speeches" & ECan's lack of plan 'negligent' "the ECan takeover would benefit both potential water investors and environmental groups" Acting Prime Minister Bill English & Breach of democracy Lianne Dalziel justice opinion 14Apr10 & ECan & the Demise of Democracy blog 15Apr10 + Crowd overflows meeting venue "Cantabrians were now expected to pay for the council's services but not have a say in how they were run" & Darfield Dairy plan has B&B owner worried "Fonterra has earmarked 600 hectares around the Racecourse Hill area for the factory, which it says is its first greenfields site development in 15 years. It is expected to process 2.2 million litres of milk a day, with potential to grow to 10 million litres a day, and will provide 50 new jobs for the area"
Councillor calls for reprimand of Parker The Press 17Apr10 & Canterbury rates revolt lead by 90yo woman should central govt now pay the ecan rates? 3news
Bazley to arrive as petition launched "requests the Government refrain from implementing the act 'in whole or in part'" The Press 19Apr10 & History will show ECan had to go Nick Smith opinion
NZ lead in agriculture threatened, says report "it could be only five years before underdeveloped agricultural regions including South America, Western China and Central Asia's large-scale intensive methods eroded New Zealand's advantage in making bulk commodities.. Steps New Zealand can take to maintain strength of agriculture sector, according to KPMG: * Maintain clean, green image. * Focus on premium products. * Better management of water resources. * Investment in science, technology and infrastructure. * Investment in animal traceability. * Adopting sustainable practices." nzherald 19Apr10
Govt labelled 'dictatorship' after kicking out elected reps clip 3news 21Apr10
End of the line for ECan - the end of local democracy? "The day of reckoning has come for Canterbury's 14 sacked regional councillors as the council meets for the final time today" Sage & Tindall radionz mp3 22Apr10 & Coffin carried in to mark E-Can's last meeting 3news & Coffin rolled out at last ECan meeting tvnz news & Democracy laid to rest at last Ecan meeting "Cr Rik Tindall attempted to move a motion that Canterbury Regional Council elections be held in November this year. ECan Chair Alec Neill told Tindall even if the motion was endorsed there was no ability to enforce it because legislation suspending elections had already been passed. Tindall said he felt obliged to table it anyway, adding: 'The majority of the public want to see the council in place democratically.' The meeting had a distinctly funereal air." The Press 22Apr10 & ECan defiant to the end "Mr Tindall's last-ditch motion for ECan elections to be held this November was carried by seven votes to three, and then dismissed, after chairman Alec Neill said the legislation sacking the council had already been passed. However, he said he appreciated the sentiment and allowed the motion to be tabled" Timaru Herald & on CTV news
Ecan commissioners won't be impinged by Environment Court "The seven commissioners appointed by the government to take over the running of the Canterbury Regional Council will have powers enabling them to by-pass the Environment Court" Bazley radionz mp3 23Apr10 & $900 a day for ECan work The Press & Officials opposed ECan changes "Ministry of Justice and DOC.. said the ECan changes were not consistent with Government policy requiring a "particularly strong case [to be] made for any regulatory proposals that are likely to override fundamental common law principles" 24Apr10
Don't bet the farm on 2015 prosperity "KPMG said last week that New Zealand's agricultural sector will be under serious threat from low-cost, large volume commodity producers overseas as soon as five years from now" ROD ORAM Sunday Star Times 25Apr10
Big agribusiness the only winners in ECan sacking "insidious impact of the decision will be its chilling effect on democracy elsewhere in the country. Other elected boards will know they could suffer the same fate if they stand in the way of development. In the meantime it's reassuring to see Canterbury residents angry about the decision. Turning opposition into effective action is the next step" JOHN MINTO The Press 27Apr10 & Labour would reinstate sacked ECan board 3news
Warning to councils by Carter "Government had 'no option' but to sack the councillors. 'We had to act here in Canterbury because the situation was untenable if we are going to seriously make progress in delivering this irrigation,' he said. 'I would have thought what happened recently with Environment Canterbury would be a signal to all regional councils to work a bit more constructively with their farmer stakeholders.'" The Press 29Apr10
Canterbury Regional council in exile PR scoop 28Apr10 + CTV report 30Apr10 + ECan In Exile derivative result
I may be wrong but . . . . "there are a number of worrying aspects to the moves by the New Zealand government to get rid of Ecan.. should be encouraged to continue its work and further develop its water management strategy" David Armstrong blog Motueka

By corporate seizure, on 1 May 2010 ECan become the ECon ... under Commissioners

Shunning of due process repugnant, says law academic "Canterbury University law professor Philip Joseph says the Environment Canterbury (Temporary Commissioners and Improved Water Management) Act, which was passed under urgency last month, breaches several principles of law, is 'constitutionally repugnant', contains 'elements of subterfuge' and is a 'constitutional affront'. The act should be repealed and the 14 sacked regional councillors reinstated" The Press 19May10 + Jumping jack brash caught in a flash 9Jun10 Protester jumps on PM's car & more youtube Protestor arrested for jumping on John Key's car & Teen protester arrested for jumping on Keyscar 3news + Teens dad works for ECan + Chch Star 11Jun10 p1-2 + PM relaxed about level of ECan protest The Press 15Jun10
Thousands rally in Square to protest ECan sackings The Press 13Jun10 & Large rally protests over water 14Jun10 + TV1 news E-Can protesters pack Cathedral Square 3news + Protesters say water will be focus in Canterbury elections "Water is shaping up to be a major issue in the upcoming local body elections in Canterbury. More than three thousand people gathered in Cathedral Square yesterday to protest against how water is being managed in the region and the sacking of the regional council" radionz 14Jun10

CRC wikipedia + youtube CTVinNZ News best local / NZ Parliament eg Question Hon Pete Hodgson to the Prime Minister "During Cabinet or Cabinet Committee consideration of the policy and legislation concerning Environment Canterbury did his Minister for the Environment declare any conflict of interest regarding his family; if so, what did he declare?" Bill English & Trevor Mallard from "Parliament TV On Demand" + It's Our City Inc. etc local elections 2010 + Sacking 'motivation to stand' 25Aug10 ...
+ Press search ecan articles * * * * *

4 Sept 2010 magnitude 7.1 Canterbury Earthquake $5B catastrophic aftershock ...
Two former ECan councillors win votes "New Ashburton Mayor Angus McKay and Hurunui District councillor Ross Little.. There was no political resurrection, however, for other ECan councillors who lost their jobs when Environment Minister Nick Smith and Local Government Minister Rodney Hide stepped in earlier this year. Sir Kerry Burke, Jane Demeter, Pat Harrow, Jo Kane, David Sutherland and Rik Tindall all stood for council, community board or district health board positions, with Tindall also having a shot at the Christchurch mayoralty. None were successful.. pleased some of the region's other mayors who wrote to the Government complaining about ECan had not been re-elected.. Tindall - who stood for the city mayoralty, the Burwood-Pegasus ward of the city council and the Hagley-Ferrymead Community Board - said he was unsure what he would do now. 'I don't have an answer to that right now. The first thing will be considering if public life is the right career - there are alternatives, to be a person like anyone else.' He did not rule out standing for ECan again. 'One reason for running was so that people would still remember me.'" Press 11Oct10 + Big spending fails to lock in votes Press 21Dec10
Results and cost of ECan survey secret "Prime Minister's Office is refusing to release detailed findings from a taxpayer-funded public poll on the Government's sacking of Environment Canterbury (ECan) councillors.. 'It's a double slap for us - we lost our democratic rights and then we have to pay for this facetious pamphlet.' Burns.." Press 10Dec10
More blasts at mine feared "Pike River recovery staff fear capping the fiery mine may prompt further explosions. It is three weeks today since the first of a series of explosions in the mine that killed 29 miners and contractors. Superintendent Gary Knowles said yesterday that capping the mine's ventilation shaft could cause the Gorniczy Agregat Gasniczy (GAG) jet engine to 'stall'. Expert advice indicated that would probably prompt further explosions, he said.." Press 10Dec10
Earthquake Mayor's media presence criticised "tended to distort the true picture of the extent of the emergency, external perceptions of needs and initial decisions as to appropriate responses.. problems co-ordinating the overall response.. included the reluctance of some agencies to hand over to regional controllers and inadequate guidance at a national level.. Council emergency operations centres were in buildings that suffered quake damage, impeding communication until other facilities were found. Poor understanding of civil defence laws and processes among some national and local representatives impeded communication..." Press 15Dec10
Academic salary revealed for ECan boss "new professorial fellowship for [departing chief executive Bryan] Jenkins in the Canterbury University-Lincoln University Christchurch Waterways Centre for Freshwater Management" was [defunct 2010] Press 16Dec10 + Fresh Water Management Forum NZ "at a critical juncture in its efforts to create sustainable and integrated fresh water management. With the recent release of the acclaimed Land and Water Forum Report, the anticipated issuing of a National Policy Statement and a series of high impact developments at both regional and national levels, there has never been a more important time for this comprehensive event" Conferenz Wgtn 15-16Feb11 NZ Freshwater Sciences Society
Year at city hall "Christmas in a town called Democracy" Press 1Jan11 + PM John Key passes test of judgement 2Jan11
Turnaround in ECan resource consent processing "risen from 29 percent in 2007/08 - the worst of New Zealand's 84 councils - to 92 percent in 2010/2011. Environment Minister Nick Smith says it's an encouraging result" newstalkzb 14Sep11
ECan's fate revealed tomorrow The Press 6Sep12 & Former mayor pans 'erosion of local democracy' & ECan commissioners staying until 2016 "Te Runanga o Ngai Tahu chairman Mark Solomon said the iwi supported the decision for commissioners to continue their governance of ECan" 7Sep12 + Environment Canterbury - Questions and Answers Department of Internal Affairs + ECan commissioners paid more "ECan commissioners have received a 9.3 per cent annual salary increase across the board, but David Caygill's has more than doubled.. a salary of $169,567 for the 2011-12 financial year - an increase, as his salary was $83,589 for the 2010-11 year.. is deputy commissioner and in charge of the water portfolio. The increase meant he received a higher salary than commissioner chairwoman Dame Margaret Bazley" Timaru Herald 2Oct12
Too soon for unitary body - ECan report "Waimakariri District Mayor David Ayers is opposed to any move towards a unitary authority. He said there were opportunities for Canterbury councils to work more closely together, but it was important they retained their existing autonomy. 'The councils are working well and have good connections with their local communities,' he said. 'If you bring them all together, it just won't work.' Ayers questioned how the boundaries for a unitary authority would be determined. If the boundaries for the Greater Christchurch Urban Development Strategy were used, he said, what would happen to small communities like Cust that fell outside its boundaries?" Press 9Oct12
Jobs lost after ECan outsources work "saving from the move would be $350,000 a year" they lie, privatising to Hill Laboratories' main South Island site Press 14Nov12
Suspension of elections 'disturbing' "Proposed legislation to extend the suspension of Environment Canterbury (ECan) elections is a ''disturbing'' breach of the rule of law, the New Zealand Law Society says.. When comittee chairwoman Nicky Wagner told him to calm down, Mahon yelled at her and the other National MPs to "f... off back to Wellington". The room was cleared while the committee decided whether to continue with the submissions" etc 15Nov12
Democratic ECan "carries too many risks" says Nick Smith the face of a maniac, devoid of principle, empathy or shame "We are proposing a mixed governance model.. with seven members elected across Canterbury at the local elections in October 2016 and six appointed by Government," Smith said. "[It] enables a majority of elected representatives while ensuring continued momentum on the Canterbury Water Management Strategy and earthquake recovery work.. other options of a fully elected council and alternatives that involved substantive changes to council functions. "Our preliminary view is that these carry too many risks given the critical stage of work on the Canterbury Water Management Strategy and the earthquake recovery. It may be appropriate to consider these options beyond 2019" The Press 18Mar15
Christchurch City City council wants ECan sidelined sibling rivalry from 1989 birth The Press 30Apr15
ECan's Future Direction "strong feeling in Canterbury that ECan should return to being fully elected" 6Jul15
Artist Sam Mahon installs protest sculpture at Environment Canterbury "environmental advocate Cathy Sintenie" Stuff 26Sep16
Tensions high at Canterbury Regional Council RNZ 11Apr17
High country community divided by fence plan "proposed for Flock Hill Station" RNZ 18Apr17 & Water Fools? - Worry in Waihora "Irrigation accounts for 75 percent of the water taken from New Zealand's waterways, and of that figure a staggering 63 percent is taken in Canterbury"
Lifestylers reject new Canterbury land and water rules "Plan Change 5 to the Land and Water Regional Plan contains new rules on pollution from farms. It puts limits, for example, on how much livestock urine is deposited on paddocks on any farm over 10ha. Owners of small properties are upset that they come under the same system as large farms" RNZ 28Jun17
ECan measuring quarry dust exposure RNZ 21Jul17
ECan at fault over Canterbury subdivision's toxic label "Residents of a North Canterbury subdivision have been told Environment Canterbury made a mistake when classifying their land as contaminated.. 'persistent pesticide'" Stuff 25Aug17
Art is 'our voice' - maker of Nick Smith squatting statue RNZ 4Sep17 & No rise from minister over 'crass' statue
Water quality protesters occupy ECan offices RNZ 14Sep17 & 'The people's ECan': protesters occupy regional council Stuff
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