The Earthquake Commission (EQC) has spent $68 million on travel-related costs since the September 2010 earthquake in Canterbury.
Documents released under the Official Information Act reveal EQC spent a total of $38m on accommodation and food for staff travelling in and out of Christchurch since September 2010, almost $20m on vehicles, $8.2m on airfares and $880,400 on taxis and parking costs.
Almost half of the money ($29m) was spent in 2010/11, when EQC had to increase staff numbers from 22 before the September 2010 quake, to more than 1000 in February 2011.
The following year, travel costs kept running high at $23.4m but went down to a total of $15.6m for the past three years.
Labour EQC spokesman Clayton Cosgrove said EQC should have asked more staff to relocate to Christchurch or hired local people instead of having “an army of bureaucrats with their clipboards parachuted in from Wellington”. Read more »