Where there is smoke there is fire.
I’ve been saying for some time that Auckland Council ignores the rule of law because nobody is policing them.
As it turns out others also think the same and Rob Stock of the Sunday Star Times did so with his comments recently.
So what does Auckland Council do?
Its head thug Roger Blakeley has come out punching.
And here is the tell tale signs of an organisation that is guilty as charged.
Everything I hear tells me that developers and property people are sick to death of Auckland Council’s officers ignoring the rule of law and doing whatever they like.
They run the Council much like a Mafioso or a fiefdom and like all narcissistic control freak organisations they are quick to react to the stinging criticism with fob offs and rebuttal.
And they are running scared because others also Â want a Policeman of Local Government it appears.
AUCKLAND COUNCIL planning supremo Dr Roger Blakeley has rejected claims council officers and urban planners were acting outside the law.
Last week, the Sunday Star-Times reported on planning consultant John Dare’sÂ Charter for Change, in which he called for the removal of “discretion” from council officers whom he accused of going beyond their legal powers and stymying development.
That, along with slow and complex bureaucracy, was limiting the supply of new dwellings and driving up housing costs, Dare said.
Blakeley dismissed that. “It’s not true,” he said. “Our officers are required to abide by the law.”
Blakeley also denied developers operated in a “climate of fear” that their chances of getting their projects completed promptly would be damaged if they were openly critical or failed to adopt council officers’ suggestions.
He also rejected Dare’s idea of creating an ombudsman to whom developers could complain when they felt that council officers overstepped the mark.
â€śThat sounds like just adding another layer of bureaucracyâ€ť Blakeley said, adding that there were already checks and balances in the system.
Blakeley acknowledged that some in the city believed only a free market could solve Aucklandâ€™s shortage of new homes and bring down sky-high property prices.
Just this past week, a report from Statistics New Zealand reported on the rise in the number of households, particularly Pacific Island households, renting. It also lifted the lid on the number of very crowded households.
The future of Auckland planning is being reviewed and a free market option is on the table.
The council has prepared a unitary plan and an independent Hearing Panel is gathering feedback with the aim of having the plan in place in 2016. That feedback process was providing a battleground for ideas on the powers the council should have to control development. Â Â Read more »