Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Herald on Roskill Community Voice & Monte Cecilia

In the Herald print edition, Tuesday August 10th 2010.

A political ticket has been formed to oppose plans by Auckland City Mayor John Banks and his Citizens & Ratepayers allies to spend millions moving Monte Cecilia School and Liston retirement village in Hillsborough.

Roskill Community Voice is contesting the Puketepapa local board and endorsing City Vision candidates Cathy Casey and Glenda Fryer for the two Albert-Eden-Roskill ward seats on the Auckland Council.

Roskill Community Voice spokesman Michael Wood said $30 million of public money was going to a "vanity project" for Mr Banks and his C&R deputy David Hay when other parks and facilities were being neglected.

Another candidate, Garth Houltham, said Mr Banks and the C&R-controlled Mt Roskill community board had ignored the community in forcing through their "grand plan" to relocate the school and Liston village to expand Monte Cecilia Park.

He said the ticket was concerned that pressure would come on nearby residents to sell their homes for further expansion, and would act as a "voice for the community on this issue".

The council has gradually been acquiring land for Monte Cecilia Park from the Catholic Church since 2000, but got offside with parents of the primary school and the local community for buying the 1ha site and planning to build a new school about 2.7km away on land at St John Vianney Church in Hillsborough Rd.

The plans have been opposed by City Vision councillors, including Dr Casey and Ms Fryer, who are standing against C&R's Christine Fletcher and Paul Goldsmith.

C&R councillors will be out in force at Monte Cecilia Park on Sunday for the opening of the Pah Homestead to house the $50-million art collection of businessman James Wallace.

The Wallace Arts Centre has been a pet project for Mr Banks...
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