Shelly Bay III; The WCC Hivemind speaks, Lawyers begin a skirmish, the HASHAA shuts down any public engagement, and Peter Jackson carries out another drive by

Possible sighting of WCC Communications Wizard

After a few weeks of steadfastly refusing to talk about Shelly Bay, the WCC coughed in the last few days and spat out that they were likely to hold another vote on whether to sell Council land at the site.

Despite protestations over the last few weeks that no one was to say anything, that no one knew anything, and that’s we’d all have to wait until the new resource consent process finished the WCC got its great muddy hoof and stamped it in the middle of a picnic blanket.

Here’s what Lavery said;

“Given what I’m proposing above is consistent with what Councillor Foster is seeking to achieve with his Notice of Motion, in my view it is not necessary to progress with the Notice of Motion at the August Council meeting.

“Instead, the matters will be canvassed once the outcome of the Resource Consent process is known, and the Council has the matter before them again.”

Mr Lavery will put together a full report into Shelly Bay, considering all the factors, before the Council will vote on it.

Shelly Bay: Decision to sell council land to be revisited

Figure that out. It’s a line or two worthy of the British television comedy “The Thick of It.”

All of this appears to have been kicked off by Andy Foster, who has been vocal despite previous attempts for everyone to wear a yellow and black “Absolutely Positively Nothing To Say” gag. Well done Andy.

One thing is for sure; the vote is likely to change from the original given that some Councillors appear to have publicly and privately changed their views.

Then, thundering from the flank, came Mau Whenua shortly after launching legal action against the PBNST over the sale of their land.

When the trust put the proposed sale to members for a vote, the members voted it down. PBNST owned the land on behalf of iwi Taranaki Whānui ki te Upoko o Te Ika.

But the trust then sold the three parcels separately, on the same day, avoiding the need to have members vote on the transaction.

That was because, when sold separately, PBNST did not consider the sale to be a major transaction requiring a vote.

Mau Whenua believes that, on the same 2017 day, there was also an option to purchase signed on the fourth and final block of iwi land at Shelly Bay. 

The group wants to to cancel that deal.

Iwi members mount legal challenge to reclaim Shelly Bay from developer

If you are so inclined, there is a hui set down for Sunday and all are invited. Someone, please, for the love of god, Facebook live it.

Ian Cassels popped up like the lead character in Close Encounters shortly after with nothing left to say other than “We will build Shelly Bay,” no doubt sculpting the Soviet Era apartment blocks in great piles of mashed potatoes.

What was interesting about that article was the hive mind that suddenly afflicted the majority of Councillors who appeared to all be channelling some central alien mind. I say mind, not intelligence, deliberately.

In a robotic chorus most of the Councillors echoed Peter Gilberd, the city Scientist, who once bought a forest, by saying:

I will be keeping an open mind as to how I vote, as  I am required to do, until I have seen all the information and have heard the debate.

We will build Shelly Bay,’ developer pledges as storm clouds gather

Repeat after me in your best robotic voices, eyes shining as we lift our eyes to the great Communications Wizard at the WCC, someone who would make Malcolm Tucker proud.

“I [insert name here], will have an open mind. I [insert name here], will wait until the commissioners have finished doing commissioner things. I [insert name here], will always worship the Communications Wizard and no words shall leave my mouth unless the Wizard commands it.”

OK, so they didn’t all stick to the script, but wow, read the statements in order, and you can see that hive mind in full action. Phew! Who needs Councillors with independent thoughts anyway!

But the story ain’t over yet.

In what could only be described as the political equivalent of headbutting (as opposed to kissing) a baby on the campaign trail, the WCC has carried on invoking the HASHAA status of the area so that no one can have any input on this round of decision making.


After moaning about the HASHAA for some years, the Councillors are now using it, despite many comments about how this whole shambles should be taken to consultation.

Sir Peter Jackson is among critics shut out of having a say on a new consent for Shelly Bay – a $500 million development he has been savagely critical of.

Wellington City Council has released a stack of documents relating to the proposed development and its second shot at getting resource consent.

They show that Enterprise Miramar, the group that got the Court of Appeal to dismiss resource consent for the development and send it  back for independent commissioners to reconsider, has been shut out of the new decision.

Law firm Buddle Findlay’s advice to commissioners went on to specify that Sir Peter Jackson and Dame Fran Walsh were also blocked from contributing, though it did not specify if they had tried to have input.

Sir Peter Jackson among key critics shut out of a say at Shelly Bay

Interesting that they specifically mentioned Peter and Fran.

Frankly, Peter doesn’t need to participate in any fake engagement process, even there were one because he can just broadcast whatever he thinks to his, let me see now, two million, ninety-nine thousand, and one hundred and thirty-six followers on Facebook.

Oh, and then he did.

“It’s a shame that New Zealand’s long tradition of democratic governance, with citizens having a natural right to engage in matters like this, has been suppressed under this appalling HAASHA system. The proposed high rise development at Shelly Bay looks like a cluster of Soviet apartments in my opinion – and so I guess it should be no surprise that Wellington City Council is operating like a Soviet-satellite state, as they attempt to shove this through the system, with little to no regard for NZ law.

The real victims here are the thousands of Taranaki iwi who have had their land taken, against their will. They have watched the Wellington City Council turn a wilful blind-eye, abandoning any pretence of moral integrity, as they sneakily enabled this modern day land grab.

It’s Absolutely Positively Disgusting on so many levels.”

Peter Jackson Facebook page


Bizarrely, TVNZ ran some kind of story with the “Soviet-satellite state” quote at the centre that was hastily deleted. Why? Who knows, perhaps the Communications Wizard at the WCC has powers that we cannot comprehend.

Screen grab of the now broken story

Well, well, well. To summarise, the Council Hivemind may or may not at some point to be determined vote on Shelly Bay again, however in the meantime, can everyone just shut the f*ck up while we use the HASHAA process to do something that we can or cannot talk to you about but feel free to engage in a happy way and for god’s sake don’t look over there more legal action just erupted and we promise you, pinky promise you, we are nothing like a Soviet-satellite state.

Well no, Soviet-satellite states are quite sophisticated. And best of all, they have public transport that works. But that’s another story.