Published 8 December 2005
Waitakere campaigner Gary Osborne could have spent his morning more usefully yesterday lounging around his pool or tending to the new requirements the city council wants him to make good around it.
Instead, he, his wife & a band of supporters went to the Henderson District Court to defend a council prosecution for failing to meet pool fencing requirements. Witnesses took the day off work to appear.
Unfortunately the court couldn’t supply a judge. And it took an hour deciding that, then arranging for the case to be adjourned (to Friday 3 February 2006).
The court clerk said the judge who was supposed to be hearing the case had had to go elsewhere, it seemed unexpectedly, and the court couldn’t supply another judge.
The council has threatened scores of its citizens with prosecution over pool fencing in the wake of Justice Tony Randerson’s failure to give the council the interpretation of the Fencing of Swimming Pools Act it wanted in a judicial review in 2004.
The council set up a swimming pool exemption committee, decided to lobby the Government to reform or repeal the act, and decided to chair a regional working party to get a regional approach to interpreting & implementing the current act.
Mr Osborne wouldn’t take up the exemption option, has questioned what the council has been trying to do, set up the Pool Owners Action Group and wrote a book, Sitting on the fence, a brief history of the pool-fencing law and the saga as it has been played out in Waitakere.
7 March 2005: Osborne produces book on pool fencing saga
2 February 2005: Waitakere pool fencing charges back in court
30 July 2004: Local bodies support pool fencing act rewrite
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