E-mail Fiasco…This is the email that got all Ross Campbell’s future emails censored or banned.

For all those who have been led to believe Councillor Ross Campbell’s emails needed to be blocked, altered, tampered with or that they were in some way malicious, Inappropriate, racist, or even abusive, the following email should be read. It is the email he says triggered the then Mayor and CE to start the blocking and intercepting of his emails to HDC. This email he sent to Mayor Duffy after an altercation at the Memorial Hall in Shannon where Mr Duffy lost his cool and even challenged a local to a fight. The previous Miranui Councillor present called some of the locals a pack of Dogs, hence the remarks about the shameful behaviour.
The “cue cards” were given to Councillors by HDC who felt that they needed prompting when asked questions by their constituents about Council matters such as Rates etc. A classic case of the tail waging the dog.
This email Cr Campbell sent to the then Mayor because he felt clarification was needed regarding mixed messages about HDC financial position, both from the CE and the then Mayor.
However this email was the trigger to all his emails from March 2014 forward, being blocked.
E.G. – One very complimentary email thanking a staff member for a job well done on a road in the Miranui Ward and with a photograph of the roading work was returned to Cr Campbell by the CE asking for an explanation. Not only had a strange photograph been attached but it had also been altered with his wife’s name as the sender.
In spite of this censorship with the interception of his emails etc Cr Campbell has continued to be an effective Councillor working with many professional HDC Staff to accomplish the work that has been done for his Constituents in the Miranui and across the whole District.
His communication within HDC has been curtailed by this behaviour which he believes was done because he became a threat to the then Mayor as he was challenging the system.

Ross Campbell’s email and Duffy’s reply.
On 25/03/2014, at 1:29 pm, Ross Campbell wrote:

After the shameful behaviour at both the Shannon Water Treatment Station and at the Memorial Hall towards the constituents of my ward I believe it is time for me to ask some very important questions and I hope that you will not need cue cards prepared by others to stage manage your answers.

Would those( old) Councillors and those on the Finance Management Committee please tell me
1 What is the true state of HDCs position Financially?

We heard from the Mayor about 5 weeks ago say, and I quote” We are in a good place financially”
Then and during the Briefings we were told and I quote ” That we are borrowing to buy the bread”

These statements do not add up.
I have fielded a large number of phone calls since then over statements made to different Community groups that support the belief that we are aboard a leaking boat full of holes with no bilge pumps .( and some one has flogged the Life Jackets).
I value the public statement made by the CEO at the recent FCB meeting that the District has been run on False accounting.
I want to know the truth and I want it in writing. Signed by the Mayors Office!

I am in the process of writing my next newsletter to the Miranui people I don’t want cue cards I want a statement from the place where the buck stops, because if the commissioners
do arrive knocking and asking questions cue cards are not going to cut it.

If I am expected to represent a policy of this council and explain to my constituents why Tokomaru and Shannon rates are so much more than anyone else’s then
I will explain that I have had no input into this figure at all neither has any of us been made aware of our true financial position.

I will not become responsible for the over spending of a previous Councils decisions.
The truth please in every day language so that all I show it too can understand it.
From where I’m sitting we look totally broke and the figures we had presented to us at the briefings and at the last Council meeting were a joke.
I have placed them before my advisors and have been told simple ” Ross you are being taken for a fool.”
” Figures and funds have been illegally used ” and if I was smart I should distance myself from this diabolical mess.
I believe it is time to take stock and reevaluate our position,perhaps we need to get our heads out of the spending mode and call a holt to this style of governance.
The CASH COW of the Miranui cannot be milked any more, it died last year and those who were feeding it have had enough!
I for one will not go along with this style of stage managing behaviour and will only be a member of a TEAM that is honest with its team members, for right now we seem to be playing by the wrong set of rules and quite frankly I am ashamed of our attitude towards our Ratepayers. We should let them have their say in whatever forum they choose and be polite enough to listen.The cue cards may dissuade the public from using the Draft annual plan submission process.

Another Matter,
I spent two hours at Horowhenua Lake with Mr Taueki yesterday and after listening to his concerns realised that really there is not a BIG problem here.It appears to be stage managed to suit other persons political aspirations. ( I wonder if I have uncovered something that none of us other Councillors know or do you?)
I think the truth is being compromised here or are we too scared to look really close?
If I don’t get a reply from you all then I will simple draw my own conclusions as to where you stand on the above issues.

Ross C Councillor for Miranui ward Horowhenua District Council.
Subject: THE TRUTH
To: Ross Campbell
Cc: “Councillors@horowhenua.govt.nz” , David Clapperton

Ross, this message is the worst I have ever experienced, the only correct statement is the one made by your advisers, and I quote, ” Ross you are being taken as a fool”.
I suggest that any additional comment between any of us will add no value at all.
What an extraordinary change from the recent gathering when we all easily chatted around the table about our families and general council issues.
There will be no further engagement from me, I work on confidence and trust.
I am reconsidering your receiving my weekly message as I’m not certain that I have your trust. B

Brendan Duffy
Horowhenua District Council

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