fbpx

Council Meeting Provides Drama As Accusations Fly

Aug 05, 2020
2613 Views

Invercargill City councilor Nobby Clark has been moved off the Sport and Recreation Oversight Group after refusing to sign the non-disclosure agreement by council.

But the drama doesn’t stop there.

During committee meetings yesterday, deputy Mayor Toni Biddle accused the chief executive of being non-transparent by passing notes to the chairman Ian Pottinger.

Biddle raised concerns about the lack of open communication around the table and said it was distracting.

This was not the first time the media had heard allegations of Clare Hadley making contact with councillors during meetings, including sending text messages.

But Cr Pottinger said, when contacted, that after talking with Local Government New Zealand about meeting protocol and what rights a chair had, he understood that note passing was fairly acceptable and standard practice.

“It’s a very common practice from a staff member to the chair because there is a lot of information going on. There is no problem,” he said.

Cr Clark also found the note passing unacceptable and said councillors were the governor’s of the city and she was their employee.

He said she often interjected and didn’t let people speak.

When contacted after the meeting, Biddle said the councillors and CEO have worked hard to ensure governance and operations were not blurred.

“The CEO has openly expressed concern around elected members remaining out of operational issues which I completely appreciate and support.

“With this being said, it is critical that this is reciprocated by the CEO.

“In recent weeks I have addressed occasions where the CEO has made decisions around governance matters, and last night I felt the CEO was attempting to lead, interject and interrupt in matters of governance.

Biddle said she has addressed her concerns prior and would continue to do so.

“I value the council of our CEO and have asked that rather than passing notes, texting or emailing elected members during meetings, that we encourage an environment where we speak openly and transparently on issues.”

During the meeting Cr Pottinger called his colleagues behaviour appalling, accusing them of picking on the CEO and Cr Clark said the whole situation was a circus.

There were accusations of untruths regarding information on whether the Rugby Supporters Club should pay for the fit-out costs for Rugby Park.

Cr Pottinger said he adjourned the meeting “because it was going nowhere.”

When asked what information was supplied to him from the CEO in the notes he said they were often informative and related to “when things were done or a ruling on something. “She does not influence our meetings.”

Southland Hospital’s new MRI Scanner Ready for Patients
News, Southland
24 views
News, Southland
24 views

Southland Hospital’s new MRI Scanner Ready for Patients

News Desk - Sep 29, 2020

Southland Hospital’s new $2 million MRI scanner is now in place and ready to scan its first patients tomorrow (Wednesday…

Brain Injury and Stroke Survivor Publishes Book
Health & Fitness, News
26 views
Health & Fitness, News
26 views

Brain Injury and Stroke Survivor Publishes Book

Aimee Wilson - Sep 29, 2020

Linzi Turner is ready for some interesting feedback now that her book “Are our superfoods silently killing us?” has been…

SIT Students Prepare Meals for Salvation Army Food Bank
Community, News
128 views
Community, News
128 views

SIT Students Prepare Meals for Salvation Army Food Bank

News Desk - Sep 29, 2020

Southern Institute of Technology (SIT) Cookery students and tutors volunteered their time and talents over the weekend to cook and…

Police Seek Witnesses to Edendale Crash
News, Southland
1435 views
News, Southland
1435 views

Police Seek Witnesses to Edendale Crash

News Desk - Sep 29, 2020

Wyndham and Mataura Police are seeking witnesses to a serious crash that occurred on the the Edendale Woodlands Highway (SH1)…

UPDATED: Snow To Low Levels, Cold Southwesterlies, Severe Gales
News, Southland
2242 views
News, Southland
2242 views

UPDATED: Snow To Low Levels, Cold Southwesterlies, Severe Gales

News Desk - Sep 29, 2020

A strong and very cold southwesterly airstream will bring further snow to low levels in parts the South Island, and…