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The human face of a lack of respect by Tauranga City Council’s Mayor, the Deputy Mayor and Councilors was again apparent yesterday morning.

While sad, it’s par for the course, and it’s totally unacceptable.

The simple act of opening’s one’s business to customers was denied Dan Wallace from Electrify NZ.

I can only imagine how he must have felt. Yet another kick in the guts to Dan and all the businesses on Durham Street, in Tauranga’s city centre.

All business owners have unduly suffered incredible delays and a complete lack of communication - and respect.

One would have thought the simple act of communicating changes to the construction schedule would be absolutely paramount.

Should the contractors be communicating more directly and regularly with the business owners and operators? Absolutely.

But isn’t the bigger question, where have the Mayor and the Elected Members been in all this mess? And why haven’t they been proactive sooner?

The Mayor states in the article "I think they have exceptional circumstances there. The project has drifted on for a long time now. It's only right to do something."

I congratulate him on suddenly recognising the significance of the situation - and yet it has been evident for many months now!

So I ask this, “Where is the effective leadership”?

Surely the Mayor, his Deputy, and the councillors know how stressful and volatile this situation is. Surely the businesses on Durham Street must be given the respect of being able to simply open their doors for business.

Instead the Mayor and Councillors sit back and shift the blame onto the contractors.

This is yet another example of a lack of leadership and accountability.

Respect starts at the top and is the foundation of a good culture - and it is to be sorely lacking by our Elected Members.

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