On Page 163 of the Bill is a clause which would repeal Section 77(1) of the Local Government Act. This means that the Waitakeres would no longer belong to Auckland Regional Council (ARC) but instead could become a national park.
This is unfair because Aucklanders have funded and supported the protection of the Ranges over decades. The Waitakeres belong to us.
Also, the conservation the ARC provides in the Waitakeres is world-class – they spend more money than is spent in most national parks and have even managed to get kokakos back on the mainland.
So why is this clause hidden in the Bill? One explanation might be that Paula Bennet made nationalising the Waitakeres a key part of her election campaign.
Trying to change the status of the ranges through openly proposing a legislative amendment would be a better approach than hiding it in a 184 page Bill.
Anyway, you have until Friday at 5 pm to make a submission on the third Auckland Bill. Please make a submission here stating clearly that you:
oppose the repeal of section 77 of the Local Government Act and would prefer to see a simple amendment of section 77 to replace “Auckland Regional Council” with “Auckland Council” as the owner of the Park
Check out the submission guide I prepared earlier for other key points to cover.