Hutt News : September 27th 2011
3 HUTT NEWS, SEPTEMBER 27, 2011 NEWS Visit our website elections.org.nz Freetext your name and address to 3676 Freephone 0800 36 76 56 Visit any PostShop About a quarter of people aged 18 to 29 in your area are still not enrolled to vote! With the General Election and Referendum not far away it's important we can all have our say. If you know anyone not enrolled, please help by getting them an enrolment form. It's easy... CAN YOU HELP? Free Information Evening about Melanoma 7.30pm Wednesday 5th October 2011 Spectrum Theatre BP House Cnr Customhouse Quay & Johnston St Wellington (Main entrance via Spectrum Health & Fitness Reception) Expert clinician speakers Question and answer time Tea and coffee served. All welcome www.melanoma.org.nz Fast Approval CASH NOW 245 High Street 24 Queen Street Lower Hutt Wainuiomata Phone: 566 0989 Phone: 564 1596 *All Loans Subject to Normal Lending Criteria Loans for all reasons ADELPHI FINANCE LTD The Established Company HN105346/wh Amounts $500 to $5000 Providing Cash Solutions 40 Years of Financial Service Surprises loom in heritage list History battle: Marie Whitney fears the value of her Laings Rd home will be devalued if it is given a heritage listing under the District Plan. By SIMON EDWARDS A couple s home is their castle -- at least until the local council considers it a nice pile of bricks and slaps a heritage listing on it. That s how Marie and Rob Whitney feel after learning their Laings Rd home is on Hutt City Council s proposed expanded list of buildings and landmarks to be covered by heritage provisions under the District Plan. Mrs Whitney fears a heritage listing will put restrictions on any refurbishment or alterations they might plan for their home of 20 years; even painting it a different colour might need consent. We own it, we re mortgage-free but we lose control. In England, having a heritage listing can add to a property s value but it s the opposite case in New Zealand, Mrs Whitney says. We re a nation of do-it-yourselfers and we resent anything that interferes with our rights and freedoms. The council isn t God but it s playing God. We re 100 per cent opposed to this. Locals poured scorn on the council when alleged lack of protection in the District Plan allowed demolition of the historic Laings Rd Methodist Church, and later the removal and subsequent arson of Dudley Cottage. The upshot was that several years ago the council commissioned architect and conser- vator Ian Bowman and local historian War- wick Johnston to prepare an inventory of the city s historic buildings. The council says they used internationally recognised criteria, including design, materials, craftsmanship and setting. Time dragged on but now the council is about to go out to consultation with a draft list of 240 buildings that are considered to be of historic significance at either a national, regional of local level. The current plan lists only 100 heritage buildings. Last Wednesday s meeting of the District Plan subcommittee heard that officers would immediately send letters of notification, information packs and feedback forms to affected owners. But some media got a hold of copies of the non-public list, and got in first. Owners were surprised to get calls from reporters asking for their reaction to a heri- tage listing proposal that for many would have been completely out of the blue. Mrs Whitney says they still haven t received anything from the council. Her house was built in 1940, when war- time put restrictions on availability of materials. It s getting to the stage where it needs repairs and they may modernise. She resents any measures in which an outside party can dictate what can and can t be done. We re not living in China. I go down the road and might see a house painted in a colour that personally I think is hideous. But that s the owner s right. I don t see any upside to us from this. She says it s not as if the council is talking about a rates rebate as a result. The wall outside has been graffiti d so many times and we ve dealt with it without a single bit of council assistance. However, on the question of colour of homes in Historic Residential Activity Areas , such as Riddlers Crescent, the draft changes appear to make repainting a permit- ted, rather than the previously restricted , activity. Councillor Ross Jamieson s Eastbourne home is also on the list and he has also voiced concern about loss of control of what s done on his property. TVNZ is reportedly more laid back on news the Avalon television studios, which is will put up for sale next year, is also proposed as worthy of a heritage listing. A spokeswoman said they would participate in the council s consultation process. District Plan subcommittee chairman Roger Styles says the council is expecting a mixed reaction from owners. Some will think it s a great thing to be in the inventory while others won t see it in such a positive way. At this initial stage, we re wanting to col- lect as much feedback as possible from those directly affected. We ll consider [that] before producing any final proposals about which buildings should be in or out of the Plan. $1m still owing? By SIMON EDWARDS CONTINUED Page 4 Some suppliers and contractors to insulation installers Energy Smart are on tenterhooks until liquidators file a creditors report -- probably later today. The Lower Hutt-based firm, which is owned by the Hutt Mana Charitable Trust through HMCT Holdings Ltd., called in Welling- ton liquidators Shephard Dunphy on Monday last week after deciding they would not put more capital into the company. Liquidator Chris Dunphy said in a prepared statement the status quo is being maintained with all seven branches remain- ing open in the short term to both complete existing contracts and undertake new business. All but four of the 79 staff have been offered short-term contracts. Mr Dunphy said liquidators will seek to sell as a going con- cern all of EnergySmart, or indi- vidual branches around the country, and are confident of a successful outcome. One media report said Energy- Smart has more than $1 million in outstanding bills, but a spokes- person from Shephard Dunphy told Hutt News yesterday that was inaccurate. However, the Dominion Post article quoted insulation supplier Terra Lana as saying it was owed $527,000 and Auckland s Insul- Pro Manufacturing said it was awaiting payment of around $500,000.
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