[June 3, 1922 – Auckland Star] To The Editor.
Sir, —Permit me to explain that the Ratepayers’ Association headed by Mr. Eadie, which has been making such a fuss over the Mt. Albert dump, asking the Minister to order its removal over the council’s head and asking the city to take in our borough, is not the senior Ratepayers’ Association which has been in existence for some years. They have as much right to the name as we have, but we may fairly claim a right to publicly disclaim their methods and tactics. In all these matters the proper course is to approach the council first. One of the deputation which asked the Minister to order the removal of the dump over the heads of the council said that every house in Malvern Road was black with flies. These sort of statements are grossly unfair to property owners and residents in Malvern Road. The fact is that there are no more flies in Malvern Road than anywhere else. The Minister asked the deputation if they could suggest another site for the dump, and the deputation had nothing to offer. Is this fair criticism? The deputation which waited on the City Council asking the city to take steps to take in the borough was quite irregular. A matter like this should come before the council and then a meeting of ratepayers before going to the City Council. In any case, I do not believe there is any general desire for amalgamation at present. —
l am, etc., E. STEVENSON. President, Mt. Albert Ratepayers’ Association.
[June 8, 1922 – Auckland Star] To the Editor.
Sir, —Mr. Stevenson takes the Mt. Albert Ratepayers’ Association to task for the very able manner in which it strives to get our local bumbles to do their civic duties. His chief grievance seems to be, not what the association is doing, but the manner in which it is doing it. Mr. Stevenson takes strong exception to the association having approached the Minister of Health in regard to the sanitary affairs of the borough and the Mt. Albert water supply. He does not allow for the fact that before any action was taken the following points had either been decided or had been considered by the Borough Council:—
1. The garbage from Mt. Albert is deposited in the Recreation Reserve, and the council agreed with local residents that the site is a most unsuitable one, and should be changed.
2. A new and eminently suitable site has been obtained by the council for the dump, but the extra cost for cartage is of more importance than the health of the community.
3. The water supply was found to be unfit for human consumption on August 10, 1921, long before any criticism was levelled at the council regarding the insanitary condition of the borough.
4. A chlorinating plant was installed, but the contamination was so serious that the remedy did not alter the menace to the health of the community.
6[sic]. The consumers were not to be informed of the fact that the water was contaminated.
7. Neither the council nor the Health Department issued a warning to the unhappy residents that the water was contaminated.
8. No instructions were given by the Health Department to sterilise or disinfect the impure water.
9. Typhoid became epidemic in Mt. Albert owing to the insanitary state of the borough, and as a result many highly respected and esteemed residents lost their lives.
For the past eight months criticism has been levelled at the Mt. Albert Borough Council by Parliament, through the columns of the Press, from the public platform, by personal intimation, per medium of the Police Court, and all without avail. I said last November at a public meeting that if the “council did not bestir itself and clean up the borough we could expect a typhoid outbreak about April or May.”
We need the co-operation of all residents to make Mt. Albert once again “A Garden Suburb.” The method of accomplishing this are surely not so very material.—
I am. etc., – FORBES EADIE.