Auckland Council

Comment of the Day

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George nails it again:

With the comments today reflecting on the possibility of Phil Goff standing for Auckland Mayor, there needs to be consideration of why he is not being snapped up by the private sector.

I believe the private sector wouldn’t touch him with a barge pole nor would they do so with the encumbered (sic).

The only way these career politicians can wield power is through being elected to office where qualified merit is not a requisite. Socialists’ support comes from those who are generally not involved in generating their own income thus relying on the endeavours of others to either provide employment or State benefits.   Read more »

Phil Goff as good as announces he is running for Auckland Mayor

Phil Goff is still not officially saying he is running for Auckland’s mayoralty, but he sure is talking a great deal about it all.

Auckland mayoral prospect Phil Goff says he would run the city differently from the current “presidential” style of leadership.

In a local television interview the Mt Roskill Labour MP has reiterated that he’s seriously considering standing for mayor, but claims he still hasn’t made the final decision.

The longtime Auckland politician has clearly been putting in the legwork,however, meeting with a wide range of interest groups in the city including youth environment movement Generation Zero and Transport Blog commentators.

Phil’s only problem, stopping him from formally announcing his bid, is his missus. It is understood from my Labour sources that she wants nothing of it, and was hoping that after 34 years as a Labour MP he was finally going to retire. The word is she isn’t at all happy about the latest developments.    Read more »

The delusions of Simon Wilson

Simon Wilson, the sacked editor of Metro, has written a column on their website defending Len Brown and the Terrible Ten.

In his column he blatantly misleads with some of his claims.

It is his attempt to lay blame on the government rather than on the idiot mayor.

The rates rises have three main drivers. One is the rising cost of services. The council is indeed responsible for managing that.

The second is the targeted transport levy. This was not the council’s choice. It wanted a user pays approach, with motorway tolls and/or some other kind of levy on those who use the roads. But that requires a law change and the government said no.

So the council had a choice: either scrap its plans for addressing the transport crisis, or load the cost onto rates.

Was scrapping the plans even a real option? Council officers warned of dire consequences for the city’s economic health if the council voted down the budget. And we already know that transport infrastructure will soon fail if funding for public transport, especially rapid transit, is not boosted.

Councillors who voted against the budget have not proposed useful alternatives, but have instead succumbed to narrow political opportunism and/or their own fears of a voter backlash.

Read more »

Auckland Council keeping the size of Bob Harvey’s trough a secret

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The Auckland Ratepayers’ Alliance says that the size of Bob Harvey’s new council trough should be made public, instead of the secret it is now.

The Auckland Ratepayers’ Alliance is calling out Auckland Council for its secretive approach to ratepayer money after it shot down the Alliance’s enquiries regarding the remuneration of Sir Bob Harvey in his new role as ‘Champion for Auckland – overseas investment’. After Friday’s announcement the Ratepayers’ Alliance asked whether and how much Sir Bob was to be paid for the role. A spokesperson for the Mayor’s office emailed back that evening with “Bob’s pay is personal information which Auckland Council won’t be releasing.”   Read more »

The arrogance of Len Brown is astonishing

Lame duck Mayor Len Brown threw a party to celebrate his pillaging of ratepayers’ pockets and his shameless breaking of his election promises.

Auckland Mayor Len Brown and council staff held a ratepayer-funded party hours after passing a new budget that includes a 9.9 per cent average rates rise for households.

Senior staff have defended the function as a way of thanking staff but critics say the decision was misguided when thousands of Aucklanders were smarting from big rates increases.

After passing his budget by one vote – and avoiding plunging the city into a financial crisis – Mr Brown left the Auckland Town Hall on Thursday night to join chief executive Stephen Town and 50 or so other staff for drinks in the Herald Theatre at the Aotea Centre.

Last night, the mayor’s chief press secretary, Glyn Jones, said Mr Brown briefly attended a function to thank staff for their work at the completion of the council meeting.

Mr Jones said he, Mr Brown and a senior adviser, Theresa Stratton, attended from the mayoral office.

Last night, a council spokeswoman said the council finance team hosted a function for around 50 staff from 4pm to 6pm at the Herald Theatre. Read more »

It is hard to know if Frances O’Sullivan is serious

Frances O’Sullivan has a frankly strange and meandering column in today’s ‘newspaper’.

In her column she makes this bizarre statement:

Increasingly there is also talk of a coalition of like-minded politicians to get Auckland moving.

Under this scenario, Labour MP Phil Goff is being touted as a mayoral candidate with the right-of-centre faction being led by Orakei Local Board chairwoman Desley Simpson.

Goff – who has been gallivanting in Rome this week with close friends former Labour political colleague Darren Hughes, Australian Ambassador Mike Rann (also a Kiwi) and Waitemata Local Board chairman Shale Chambers – has been part of the Auckland political scene for decades.

He is supposedly cut from Labour’s cloth.

But Goff is from the blue jeans brigade that made up the “Vietnam era” generation of politicians. The university lecturers, lawyers, and urban professionals who joined Labour in the 1970s and early 1980s with a clear aim to overthrow the spendthrift prime minister Sir Robert Muldoon, liberalise the New Zealand economy and get the nation focused on “paying its way”.   Read more »

Lame duck mayor lets another ex-mayor in the trough

Len Brown just can’t stop rewarding other troughers.

The whole charade of his appointment just shows how easily Len Brown and his council lie about things.

A week after Auckland Council hosed down Sir Bob Harvey’s claim he was the new ambassador for the Super City, mayor Len Brown has welcomed the former Waitakere mayor’s appointment to the role.

Last Friday Sir Bob announced on breakfast television that he’d been appointed to a council role, which would involve overseas investment.

But within minutes of the announcement, a mayoral spokesman said there had only been “discussions” about him taking on the new job.

Today the council announced Sir Bob, who has stepped down as chairman of the council-controlled organisation Waterfront Auckland, was named ‘Champion for Auckland – overseas investment’ by the council.   Read more »

No surprises here as Ngati Whatua go to court

The brownmail starts. Ngati Whatua are going to court.

I wonder when the taniwha is going to turn up?

Auckland iwi Ngati Whatua has confirmed it will seek a judicial review of Government’s plan to sell off Crown land to private developers.

The iwi said this afternoon it had filed a statement of claim in the High Court in Auckland to seek a ruling on its right of first refusal on surplus land in Auckland.

“Ngati Whatua is working closely with the government to get more houses built,” iwi spokesman Ngarimu Blair said in a statement.   Read more »

Lootin’ Lyin’ Lascivious Len and his councilmen

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…and women.  Such as they are.

Auckland Mayor Len Brown has conceded that a “significant” number of ratepayers will face a rates rise much bigger than the 2.5 per cent promised to them.

What a piece of scum liar he is.   He was elected on a lie.

This morning, Mr Brown told Radio New Zealand there would be a “significant” number of people who would notice an increase in their rates as a consequence of revaluation. There would also be thousands who would receive “significant decreases” in their rates as a result of the revaluation, he said.

“What we passed yesterday was an increase, this year at least, and over the next 10 years, of an average of 2.5 to 3.5 per cent increases in the underlying rate take. We also passed a transport targeted rate of $114 net for every household.

“And so for some households on top of what they’re getting for their revaluation – yes they will get significant increase in their rating.”

Remember that it isn’t a one-off increase either.  Len’s basically locking in year-on-year increases that are seriously excessive – more than 1000% over inflation.  How can this not be criminal negligence?   Read more »

Who will be left to ride on Len’s train?

via Sunday Star Times

via Sunday Star Times

In Mangere and Otahuhu, rates will go up by nearly 17 percent.

Val Payne from the Mangere Bridge Residents and Ratepayers Association says some locals are considering moving out of the region to avoid the hike.

“People can’t afford to stick around. I’ve spoken to one lady who said her rates are goung up about $500-plus a year, which is ridiculous. Your pension goes up about $8, so you’re behind the eight-ball all the time,” she told RadioLIVE. Read more »