< March 2018 newsletter


Maunga Authority Snubbing Local Community

For an example of what we can expect from a co-governance entity we need look no further than the Tūpuna Maunga o Tāmaki Makaurau Authority here in Auckland. The Authority is presently imposing its car ban on Mt Victoria-Takarunga, with a minimum of consultation and all but ignoring the normal political channels for approving such a major change, according to Devonport based journalist Geoff Chapple, in an opinion piece published in the NZ Herald on 20th February:

 ‘Auckland unfairly losing access to maunga’

The Authority's first project was to ban vehicles at Maungawhau-Mount Eden's summit. This was followed by the warning that vehicles will also be banned from the summits of a further five maunga. According to an article published in the New Zealand Listener (25 March 2017), instead of discussions, information signs, meetings, and decisions that might reflect community opinion this news arrived like a “diktat”. The Authority’s Chair, Paul Majurey, told the Listener that local boards could not rule against an Authority decision. The local board can’t object. In terms of our specific statute there is not a process for objection in terms of decisions made by the authority.”

The Devonport Takapuna Local Board responded immediately with a resolution that withheld its support for a car ban on Mt Victoria-Takarunga. The Maunga Authority's public response was to say a local board had no final power to intervene. The Board requested formal consultation. This request hung in limbo for a year before being finally scheduled for December 2017. That meeting was postponed until February - after contractors had already begun work to install the vehicle barrier.

The Auckland Council representatives* on the Authority, who make up half the membership, are accountable to the citizens of Auckland. But can they suspend their obligation to consider the interests of the wider community when wearing their Maunga Authority hat? (Judging by the dictatorial way the Authority is acting, it appears they can). This is a question we could well ask of them.

*The Auckland Council members on the Maunga Authority currently are:

  • Alf Filipaina: Auckland Council Governing Body
  • Cathy Casey: Auckland Council Governing Body
  • Ross Clow: Auckland Council Governing Body
  • Lemauga Lydia Sosene: Chair – Mangere –Otahuhu Local Board
  • Glenda Fryer: Deputy Chair – Albert-Eden Local Board
  • Kit Parkinson: Deputy Chair - Ōrākei Local Board

Go back to the March 2018 newsletter


RELATED ARTICLES


Devonport citizens continue the fight against autocratic decision-making

You may remember the protest in Devonport early last year, whereby a group of citizens pushed back on the Tupuna Maunga Authority’s (TMA) autocratic decision-making concerning Takuranga / Mt Victoria.  Continue reading

Update on Sea Change - the Hauraki Gulf marine spatial plan

In last month’s DA Update, we reported that the Ministries of Conservation and Fisheries are in the process of setting up a Ministerial Advisory Committee, (MAC), the purpose of which is to “help shape the proposals, facilitate engagement with our Treaty Partners and stakeholders, and provide advice and report to the three Ministers – Environment, Conservation & Fisheries.” Continue reading

Update on 'Our Water Future': Auckland's water strategy

The official opportunity to have your say on Auckland’s water strategy has now passed. (However, there is nothing to stop you continuing to express your views to the mayor and councillors). The submissions are now being reviewed.  Continue reading

The Maori world view - 'military' style gates on Mt Albert

Users of Ōwairaka, the maunga in Auckland's Mt Albert, are objecting to the ‘military’ style gates designed to enforce the summit vehicle ban. Comments include words such as "hideous", "an atrocity", and “out of step with the place's natural beauty”. Continue reading

Invitation to hear Councillor Mike Lee speak on the Sea Change Plan

Democracy Action invites you to an address by Mike Lee – Waitemata and Gulf Ward Councillor on Auckland Council. Mike is very concerned about proposed threats to democracy as advocated in the Sea Change Hauraki Gulf Marine Spatial Plan. He outlined his concerns in an article first published in the Gulf News on 21 June, now available on Mike’s website HERE. Continue reading

Ports of Auckland continues to defend made-up history

Our working group has been campaigning to have the new memorial plaque on the Ports of Auckland frontage removed and replaced with one that reflects the facts. As outlined in the August edition of our newsletter, the Ports of Auckland say they are happy with the wording on the plaque and do not intend to change it. The plaque erroneously states "Te Kawau gifted 3000 acres to establish the City of Auckland." It replaces a plaque which referred to a purchase rather than a gift. Continue reading

Auckland Plan 2050 Adopted – With The Anti-Democratic Provisions

The Auckland Plan 2050, the long-term strategy for Auckland’s growth and development, and which provides a framework to inform decisions, has been adopted by Auckland Council. Continue reading

The Ports Of Auckland Assist Ngati Whatua In Rewriting History

Further indication of how far Auckland Council is prepared to go to promote Maori interests is illustrated by the new memorial plaque on the Ports of Auckland frontage.  Despite documentary evidence to the contrary, Ports of Auckland has backed Ngati Whatua’s attempt to re write history - the truth be damned! Continue reading

October 2018 Bonus Edition

Several members who were unable to attend our special meeting on Sunday 7th October have requested a report on the ‘Sea Change versus democracy in the Hauraki Gulf’ presentation given by Auckland Councillor Mike Lee. Mike has been a local body representative in the Auckland region for over 26 years, having lived and worked in the Hauraki Gulf and Waitemata ward for most of his life. He was invited to address Democracy Action about the power play currently underway for the control of the Gulf. Continue reading

The Office of the Attorney General has released its review of the Sea Change process.

As to the implementation aspect of the Plan, the review says that the agencies involved in the project each developed their own processes for considering how to implement the plan. For instance, Auckland Council and Waikato Regional Council have taken different approaches. Please click HERE to download this file. Continue reading

Advancing the co governance agenda

Auckland Council recently released a discussion document on developing ‘a water strategy to ensure a secure, sustainable, and healthy future for water in Auckland’ - Our Water Future: Auckland's water discussion. Continue reading

Auckland Council’s ‘Our Water Future’ - Remember to have your say

Auckland Council recently released a discussion document on developing ‘a water strategy to ensure a secure, sustainable, and healthy future for water in Auckland’. We covered this issue in the March update, but to briefly recap, as to the advancement of a co-governance agenda, concerns centre on the following statements: Continue reading

Draft Auckland Plan Subverts Democracy

In last month’s newsletter, we went into some detail about how the Draft Auckland Plan 2050 is promoting the subversion of our democracy by bestowing extra co-governance rights on a group of citizens based on race, and requiring the recognition of ‘mana whenua’ as rangatira (chief) in Tāmaki Makaurau (Auckland). Continue reading

Goff replies to complaint over the Tūpuna Maunga Authority – claiming no mandate to intervene

Last month we reported on the Tūpuna Maunga o Tāmaki Mākaurau Authority meeting of May 6, at which members of the public who made presentations were abused and berated by members of the authority. Please see below a copy of a media release by one of the presenters, outlining his concerns. Continue reading

Co-governance – the Trojan horse of iwi control

Some think co-governance is being nice and inclusive - but it's not working out that way in practice. All is not well in the co-governance arrangements we have been observing in Auckland. We have reported previously on how the citizens of Devonport have been treated by the Tūpuna Maunga Authority. This unfortunate state of affairs was reinforced at the Authority’s hui on May 6th. Continue reading

North Head now controlled by Tupuna Maunga Authority

As part of a Treaty of Waitangi settlement, 14 volcanic cones were given to 13 iwi and hapū of Auckland when the Ngā Mana Whenua o Tāmaki Makaurau Collective Redress Deed passed into law in 2014. North Head (Maungauika) is the last of these to come under the control of the Tupuna Maunga Authority (TMA) - when it was transferred from the Department of Conservation on January 18.  Continue reading