How did the dam get started, anyway?

The CEO issued the order

Spending about $2 million $5 million $10 million $15 million, HBRC staff and consultants then beavered away …

Peer review was conducted …

The business plan was declared a “Go-er”.

Stay tuned for the groundbreaking date.

Tom Belford

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Join the Conversation


  1. Hi. Like your humour but don’t like your negative viewpoints.

    I hope you cant see the positive side of the dam project because at the end of the day water is life and without it nothing can grow.

    Right now we are wasting the water falling from the sky so why not store it to use another day?

    Off course there will be a cost to build it but if we run out of water Hawkes Bay will be stuffed due to negative short sided people like yourself.

    I am a townie but I am the great grandson of Samuel and Harriet Fletcher, they settled at Pendle Hill just down the road from the dam back in 1854. They were pioneers and helped to shape NZ into what we have become. So get with the pioneering spirit and move forward like did!


    Ben Keehan

  2. Recent comments from “FW” lead me to suspect he thinks Dilbert is a real person. Perhaps you would consider a disclaimer along the lines….”this item is a joke, it is not real. It is a bit of light hearted humour to brighten up our day”.

  3. Tom – please DON’T. The inconsistency of information on this project is deadly serious – we NEED a bit of humour along the way. Marcus should sit in at a HBRC meeting or view a webcast and see the contribution from the fab four – I bet a bucket of gravel he will become your biggest fan.

  4. Larry, spot on.
    What people fail to appreciate, is that prior to the Fab Four being elected the councils officers ran the show, supported by a flaccid council.
    Now they cannot believe their bad luck when the Fab Four insist that it is the job of elected members to set the policy, and the job of staff to ensure it is implemented.
    The fact that the tail wagged the dog for so long is an indictment on the current chair and his sycophantic councillors from the last term.
    Regrettably, some were re-elected.
    More fool the electors–particularly Napier, where our 3 “representatives” are an absolute joke and an embarrassment to our city.

  5. Tom,

    I see you have made the front page of the Napier Mail this morning. These Dilbert cartoons are being portrayed by Fenton Wilson as a disloyal attack on staff. You could just as easily read them as a comment on the management that commissions the work. Although I can´t comment for this project or the HBRC specifically, a common scenario is for staff to be instructed to do the analysis with the unspoken requirement – make it work! So they are in a difficult position. Eventually they make some heroic assumptions (eg water usage, price path) and present it to management that, if you accept these assumptions, the project is a winner. Mangement says thank you very much, forgets about the proviso, and moves ahead. Add in varying levels of competence, miscommunication, and lobbying from bidders and financers, and you get your typical big project.

    Probably the staff do justifiably feel a bit put-upon by these cartoons, but on the other hand you are keeping the issue in the news. Keep it up!

    Chris Robinson

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