Drip … drip … drip … drip …

That’s the sound of the Hastings District Council spending ratepayer dollars.

Each individual spend never sounds like much, but boy do they add up!

Take, for example, HDC’s provisional decision, to be confirmed at Thursday’s Council meeting, to increase HDC’s “contribution” to the Kelt Capital Spring Carnival from $25,000 to $50,000.

Drip … drip … drip … drip … $25K becomes $50K. Like Sam Kelt needs our money … for a horse race! But the mayor called it sending a message that “we care.”

Do we? Who is the “we”?!

And it all happens “off-the-record” with a voice vote. No accountability. A few councillors might object — in this case, Brownrigg, Williams, Poulain, Tinker, Hyde apparently did so — but ultimately the Council merrily rolls drips along. Why not? Weeks later, no one will know who spent the ratepayers’ money on marketing Kelt’s Carnival.

This is the kind of practice that causes citizens to be unhappy with their elected officials. In the BayBuzz Voter Survey now underway, fully 68% of respondents so far say they are dissatisfied with the way current officeholders are running local government in the Bay.

On Thursday, maybe some councillor will have the temerity to demand a recorded vote on this expenditure. What a useful precedent THAT would set. Talk about sending a message!

Tom

P.S. You can still take the BayBuzz Voter Poll at www.baybuzz.co.nz

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