Monday, March 06, 2006

Will this be the Apogee of Labour's Arrogance?

Rumours that Conservation Minister Carter will veto the recently approved Whangamata marina abound.

Presumably the rumours arise from the Labour kite flying - or as another has put the strategy -

"Throw it on the porch and see if the cat licks it up"

The Environment Court decision was arrived at after extensive, voluminous and precise hearings where all points of view would have been canvassed and all parties had formal opportunities to make 'their case' .

This dear reader is the fundament upon which our legal system exists - transparency and access.

It is vital that Ministers of the Crown support both the process of law and its outcomes.
It would wrong for Carter to decide, unilaterally, to overturn a decision of the Court. This was no small matter decided in an afternoon. If Carter does veto he trivialises our legal system.

The rumours are Carter is planning to veto the development on grounds the proposed marina is an exclusive activity. The action of veto could not be more exclusive - especially if it comes after extensive, public, moderated court hearings.

By its nature Carter's veto would be exclusive. He would be making a decision without all interested parties making representation to him. He is narrowing the ambit of the available analysis.

Importantly he placing himself above the Courts.

The reason we have a Court process is to ensure, all points of view are aired. The merits are assessed according to the law and judgement reached. The Court has determined on the Whangamata Marina - Carter should leave it well alone.

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