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Shelly Bay review: councillors concerned about cost

Report from RNZ
Two Wellington city councillors have raised concerns that the costs of a review of the council’s decision-making for the Shelly Bay development will balloon.

It’s yet to be decided if the review of the project will go ahead, but if so, it will cost at least $180,00 [1]0.

Councillors are in the process of deciding the terms of reference for the review, which would be overseen by Mary Scholtens QC.

Deputy mayor Jill Day said the review shouldn’t happen until after independent commissioners made a decision on the project’s resource consent.

She said with councillors wanting more covered in the review, costs could creep up very quickly.

She was apprehensive about agreeing to something that could end up costing a lot more.

Fellow councillor Brian Dawson agreed the review should not be done until after the independent commissioners had completed their work.

“Also, quite bluntly, we’re into pre-election time, some candidates are using Shelly Bay as a primary election thing. This should be done straight after the election.” He said $180,000 was a lot of money, and council could do a lot with that.

Mr Dawson said he supported the review but said it was academic, because a lot of it would focus on the council’s processes around special housing areas, which the council voted to put an end to last year.

“So there’s not a lot of point telling us that we should do that differently when we’re never going to do that again,” Mr Dawson said. “I hope that we don’t spend a lot of money being told things that either we already know and or are no longer relevant to what we do as council anyway.”

Councillors will discuss the terms of reference on Thursday, and a vote on whether to confirm them will be held at the full council meeting next week.