27th June 2024 Update | We are in this together!

Last Wednesday, 19th June, One Mahurangi held a public meeting to update our community on the ongoing issues with Watercare. We discussed what has transpired so far, our hopes for the future, and the potential options we have moving forward.

The turnout was significant, with around 200 deeply concerned locals in attendance. Many of these individuals face the risk of losing everything if Watercare proceeds with its current plans, which has understandably stirred a great deal of fear and anger within our town.

In the time since our last newsletter, we hosted a Transport & Infrastructure forum. While this wasn’t a public meeting, it included representatives from Auckland Transport, Auckland Council, Watercare, the Local Board, developers, planners, and community groups. Four local retailers, two from Elizabeth Street and two from Queen Street, shared their heartfelt concerns about the devastating impact Watercare’s plan could have on their businesses. Their message was clear: “This will kill our business.” We hope Watercare listened.

The following day, we met with Mayor Wayne Brown to further discuss our concerns. This was also a private meeting, attended by Dave Stott and Bevan Morrison (Co-Chairs of One Mahurangi), myself, MP Chris Penk, and Greg Sayers, who facilitated the meeting. During this discussion, we presented an alternative plan that involves routing the project around the CBD and underground. The mayor committed to advocating for this alternative to the Watercare Board.

Our petition is still circulating and collecting signatures. If you haven’t signed it yet, please do so as soon as possible. Once finalised, we will present it to the Watercare Board and CEO. Some have questioned why we haven’t yet approached the media. Our response is that we are still negotiating with Watercare and will go to the media when the timing is right. Civil disobedience remains an option, but only if and when it becomes necessary. We will keep you informed should that time come.

There are comments suggesting that I have no personal stake in this issue. However, I assure you that we all have skin in the game in one way or another. This is personal for me, just as it is for everyone else.

This is my town, and I am committed to doing everything possible to stop Watercare and ensure they seriously consider alternative options. Myself, Dave Stott, Bevan Morrison, and many others are working tirelessly, often behind the scenes, to make sure your voices are heard. Remember, at the end of the day, we are all in this together. And, we are Stronger Together.

Murray Chapman
One Mahurangi Manager

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