WDC Conference Centre Decision Scandal

“The Whangarei District Council decision today to reject a $60million offer from Central Government organised last year, through the Provincial Growth Fund (PGF), is nothing short of a scandal,” says Rt Hon Winston Peters Leader of New Zealand First.

“Those who watched the Council meeting online were witnesses to misinformation and an appalling process of indecision and vacillation.”

“Some councillors clearly have no aspirations for the present generation of Whangarei and Northland or for future generations.”

“The Oruku Landing Conference and Event Centre proposal was a chance in a lifetime initiative in the North. Within a day of the Reserve Bank putting up interest rates and warning of future hikes some of these Councillors decided to defy intellectual and economic gravity.”

“Within days of Hamner Springs highlighting their town’s PGF initiative to provide a modern tourism utility, Northland has again missed out.”

“It is indeed sad that a chance to modernise the attractions the North has to offer and bring desperately needed investment and employment to Whangarei and associated businesses was simply and inexplicably ignored.”

“Coming alongside the Hundertwasser development the question has to be asked ‘just who do some of these Councillors think they represent? Don’t they know that getting money out of Central Government is like squeezing water out of a stone.’”

“Over 5 decades ago Whangarei was the beneficiary of investment in the Marsden Point development, the Fertiliser Works, the Glassworks, the Portland Cement Works and Government Print. Northland was thriving back then and could be again if only some lateral, visionary and far-sighted decision making was present,” says Mr Peters.

“To simply blow the chance of a province’s lifetime is beyond comprehension.”