Piha Opinion

How long before we’re all the same ?

12 Comments 22 February 2016

The bag that gives back !

Waitakere RubbishWe pay $88.68 a year in rates for Waste Management

We have no choice but to buy orange plastic bags for our rubbish in Waitakere.

‘Choose orange’ – is there another choice ?


Included in the cost of the bags are the following:

  • Community composting courses
  • Food waste awareness and trials
  • Recycling collections and education
  • Environmental education in schools
  • Community recycling centers
  • Keeping your streets clean ( don’t recall our streets being cleaning recently )

Piha rubbish Collections Left:  Off Auckland Council’s website

The price of the bag covers the cost of collection and disposal of your rubbish“.

Come on : that’s not true if we’re to believe what the side of the rubbish truck says.






Grey Lynn rubbish Left: Off Auckland Council website

All rateable properties are supplied 1 red lidded rubbish bin for household rubbish”  No they aren’t !

Don’t you think it’s about time, Auckland Council, we were all treated the same ?





Cost of rubbish collection

Your Comments

12 Comments so far

  1. stephen peapell says:

    Yes the rubbish bags cost money but its still cheap when you look at the prices they charge at the rubbish transfer depots. We took a small rental trailer a few weeks back with junk from around the house when we cut some trees back and general household waste and they charged us $48.00 another rip off price its due to Auckland council fees and the costs of trucking it 10 minutes to the dump site. Yes we use the council rubbish bags each week a hassle to put out. If you live on the north shore you get two wheeled bins free in the council rates one for waste and one for your reycyle garden waste good deal. And one for bottles can etc.

  2. Michael says:

    At my home in Westmere, Auckland, I pay $225.56 per year for Waste Management, which is $136.58 more than at Piha. The difference spread over 52 weeks is $2.63 per week which is probably about the average amount per week over the summer and winter months that I would spend on Orange Bags for Piha rubbish. So not sure you have a sound case to argue about being treated the same Bobbie.

  3. Penny says:

    Question is do the orange bags give back, how much and to whom? OIA request to council, “What is the revenue from the Orange bags?” was denied. What we can say is that Auckland’s largest stream restoration projects Freemans Bay and Whau Local Board’s La Rosa stream daylighting and Mid Eskdales stream restoration, with their own community ecological Thomas and Civil contractors, and free weedbags planting and citizen science again regional budgets was at no cost to their own local boards. Project Twin Streams, maui dolphins, kauri dieback co-ordinators, and piha stream and weeding projects cost Waitakere $1.1 million of local Waitakere budget last year. So the question is …..Why is Waitakere’s huge environment spend come from our local budgets, while all other stream and eco planting in Auckland comes from regional budgets (presumably from Orange Bags giving back?) ? So yeah, there is a huge consistency and transparency problem. Council needs to publish a report showing what revenue from Orange Bags was generated from which areas and where that revenue was spent. But apparently on the North Shore the Yellow bags are cheaper. So they use private services but get the lions share of regional eco spend. More transparency required from Auckland Council.

  4. A red lid rubbish bin would solve the issues of weekend warriors leaving rubbish bags out that rats and dogs tear apart. Sick of my neighbour leaving on a Saturday and I have to clean up their mess!

  5. Sandra Coney says:

    Penny You overlook that the Waitakere Ranges Local Board is in a unique position among mainland board with nearly 85% native forest cover. Franklin is the next nearest to us with about 15%. So of course boards like Whau or Waitemata with negligible native forest cover will not have a big spend on environment. EG in this financial year Waitemata’s main environmental spend is $116,000 on environment. You are not comparing apples with apples. With our high environmental need, plus the Heritage Area, WRLB needs to have a priority on environment. The main factor hampering us, has nothing to do with rubbish bags, but that the formula for funding local boards is based primarily on population, with a small adjustment for deprivation and geographic area. WRLB has half the population of Henderson-Massey and population-wise are one of the smaller boards, so we come out 2nd best on the funding formulas.
    Sandra Coney
    Chair WRLB

  6. Sandra Coney says:

    In the next few months all households across Auckland will be able to have an inorganic rubbish collection paid out of the rates, that is, you pay no extra money. It is coming to the west including Piha in the next few months. AC is moving towards a similar rubbish collection across Auckland. Soon Piha will have recycle bins twice the size of the current ones, just like the city, though you can ask for a smaller bin. There is not one size fits all because rural areas are not the same as urban areas and it can be difficult getting bins out to the road. Therefore for general rubbish collection, Piha residents will be able to chose bags or bins. Rolling this out through the Auckland region will take time as there are a lot of people in Auckland.

    Sandra Coney
    Chair WRLB

  7. Penny says:

    The boards budget is not responsible for the regional park. That is regional budgets. In the last years final annual report.the $1.1 million environmental expenditure was replaced with the explanation “the board is delivering project twin streams”.. Ecomatters has not delivered a major new infrastructure project in our board area. What Ecomatters delivered (lead by the Glen Eden Project Twin Streams Leader) was a massive stream daylighting, art and community engagement project La Rosa Stream. I encourage people to visit this multimillion dollar project and reflect on the fact that Whau local board didn’t pay for this project. I encourage people to visit kaipatiki local board facebook page and the amazing leroys bush programme and the mid eskdale stream programme – Auckland’s biggest environmental community projects – and reflect on the fact that in last years final annual results Kaipatiki had $0 for environment. Our money went to Ecomatters and Weedfree and Keep Waitakere Beautiful which have significant conflict of interest with our board and staff. Have a look at the Ecomatters staff and you will see they are not local people. They’re is a complete lack of transparency about what is delivered, the projects are not tendered so no other landscape or environment group can apply , there is conflict of interest with staff and elected members, and there are no hard deliverables in the contracts, most of the staff are from other areas and belong to groups delivering environmental projects in other areas. Muriwaie Environmental Project. Grey Lnn 2030 , Urban Kitchen, Mt Eden.

  8. Sandra Coney says:

    Penny, You are once again misreading budgets and if you are going to quote from other boards you would be best to talk to them first, so you get your facts straight. Kaipatiki Local Board gave $35,000 in a direct funding arrangement to the Kaipatiki project, same as our Board does with Ecomatters, and also leases them their premises for very little. In addition it gave them $49,000 for a business case for an environmental centre. It also gave them grants through their grants programme. Regarding your claims about conflict of interest – you make general claims, and I want readers to know I have not and have never had any relationship with Ecomatters, Weedfree or Keep Waitakere Beautiful which by the way has been wound up. Other members who have conflicts, declare those and step aside while decisions are made. It is nonsense to say there are no hard deliverables in the contracts with Ecomatters. The outputs and outcomes are quantified and explicit. EG So many weed bins, so many temporary weed bins, an eco festival, projects in early education, reduction in plastic bag project. All these projects and others are closely overseen by the Council’s regional environmental services and biosecurity teams which report to the Board (myself and Saffron Toms) independently of Ecomatters at least monthly. The big new project Ecomatters is delivering (with others) is the Climbing Asparagus Project which is a multi-year project delivered in Piha and Huia.

    Sandra Coney
    Chair WRLB

  9. Penny says:

    . Sandra, My facts have been checked with Council via OIA and published budgets. Re the Ecofestival: Waitakere local boards agenda (13 March 2014) said the 3 western local boards are delivering Ecofestivals in the North and the West. for a cost of $257,724 dollars. Yes our agenda said West Auckland paid for the North Shores ecofestivals a quarter of a million dollars. (this was repeated on all three west agendas) The North Shore agendas clearly showed the North Shore didn’t pay for their ecofestivals who had allocated $0 to environment. Their agenda showed they received their ecofestival for free from Regional budgets.. Complaints to council said this was an error, again! La Rosa delivered by Ecomatters was definitely at no cost to Whau as confirmed by Council under OIA.

  10. Sandra Coney says:

    I have asked for an explanation from the Finance Dept of Auckland Council for the report in the 2014 agenda. This is the explanation

    “The Infrastructure and Environmental services update report which appeared on the agenda dated 13 March 2014, and quoted $257,724 (uninflated) for the three western boards referred to the overall budget line for Community Environment Services for 13/14 financial year and not solely to the project for Eco Fest. Included within the Eco Matters Trust funding was $27,500 for the Eco Fest(across the three west local boards) i.e. $9166.66 per board. ”

    Sandra Coney
    Chair WRLB

  11. Sandra Coney says:

    Regarding Project Twin Streams [PTS] mentioned above, the funding for development of PTS came from a $40 million grant from Infrastructure Auckland monies made in the early 2000s. It is not ratepayer money and cannot be used for any other purpose. The WRLB has questioned this and this is the answer we are given. The final PTS projects under this IA grant money will be carried out in this financial year.

    Sandra Coney
    Chair WRLB

  12. Bobbie Carroll says:

    Sandra, $M40 grant from Infrastructure Auckland ” is not ratepayer money”. Where do Infrastructure Auckland get their money from if not ratepayers ? Also are you serious that Protect Twin Streams has had $M40 spent on it . . . ?

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