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I could be arrested

29 May 2024

Regular readers will know that I've had my run-ins with the local council on multiple occasions.

Right now, local folk are reeling under rate rises that, once compounded, are expected to exceed 65 percent in the next few years. That's a lot, especially considering that this district is considered a low-income one with many families on or below the bread-line.

The people have been told that a fiscal crisis has required these significant rates-rises, along with a reduction in services, the slashing of community grants and a heft uptick in fees.

Apparently the South Waikato District Council is running very short of money, things are tight, very tight indeed.

Which is why I was somewhat surprised to receive letter last week. Two copies were delivered as PDFs via email and another arrived in hardcopy in my PO Box.

This wasn't just more hype and marketing dross, this was a threat directed at me personally and clearly stated "you could be arrested".

Now I'm not unfamiliar with the SWDC's threats, invariably delivered through the very expensive corporate law-firm Tompkins Wake

In fact, I'm amassing quite a pile of them here which I would estimate has already cost the ratepayers of this district a few thousand dollars.

A couple of years ago Tompkins Wake sent me a letter threatening defamation if I didn't take down this video and apologise to the (then) mayor Jenny Shattock:

As I always do, when confronted with baseless bully-boy threats, I said "bring it on".

And, as is the case with bullies and their hollow threats, nothing happened. This was clearly a very nasty attempt by the (then) mayor to bully me -- and she dipped into the public purse to do so.

But now to this latest threat which suggests that I could be arrested.

What is my crime? What have I done to outrage the council to such an extent that, once again, they have dipped into the public's pockets to try and scare me off?

Well this time it's this video:

Yes, once again, I caught the council in a lie, and clearly they hate having their dishonesty exposed in such a public way with such irrefutable video evidence.

Their response to having this dishonesty exposed is not to fix up a culture that clearly considers lying to be an acceptable practice. No, their response is to continue to try and cover up their misdeeds and lack of integrity by threatening me with arrest.

But wait, it gets worse!

The letter alleges that I have been discourteous and disrespectful to the staff member who featured in that video. If you want to see the disrespect and lack of courtesy, check out the few minutes from about 5:45 onwards in that video.

Disrespectful? Discourteous?

Yesterday I dropped in and asked the lovely woman in question -- she said she hadn't even seen the video in question and agreed that our interaction was friendly and cordial.

More lies from the SWDC it would seem and their legal whores are more than happy to put such lies into words on their letterhead, along with threats of arrest.

This three page bull-boy letter will have cost ratepayers a good four-figure sum -- meanwhile, those ratepayers are being told "we're so poor we're going to have to dig deeper into YOUR pockets just to make ends meet".


So where do I go from here?

To be honest, I truly believe this leter is a defamation because it contains baseless allegations, which if true, would cause very real damage to my reputation.

Will I sue for defamation?

Of course not, that would just give the SWDC's legal whores new Porsches -- paid for by SWDC ratepayers who are as much a victim of this council as I am. They would be footing the bill and if any damages were awarded, it would eventually come out of their pockets -- even if only in the form of higher public liability insurance costs.

No... as I always do, I will take the moral high ground on this.

I am about to invite the SWDC (both governance and executive) to sit down around a table with a view to settling any outstanding grievences and coming up with a plan whereby we can all work together to lift the prospects of the district and reduce the burden on ratepayers.

I can bring significant investment to the district. Over the past decade or so they've already either turned away or simply ignored approaches from large multi-national corporations that I've brought to the table that have been worth millions.

As I've been told to my face by one councilor and former deputy mayor "you have some great ideas Bruce but, because it's you..."

The lack of professionalism doesn't get much more blatant than that.

Let's give these people one last chance to hold true to the promises they made to ratepayers when begging for their votes. I'm willing to give it a go, will they?

Stay tuned (and if there is a pause in the daily column, can someone please come and bail me out of jail).

Carpe Diem folks!

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