An Interesting Coincidence

Happy Birthday Len BrownI’ve been really struggling to see why Len Brown would claim $810 for a dinner at a suburban restaurant in Manurewa as council business. For starters it was a Sunday night, hardly a night of business anywhere let alone council business. Anyone who has any dealings with a council knows full well that they are strictly 0900-1630 Mon-Fri.

Then there is the location. Now don’t get me wrong, Volare is a a nice family restaurant but haute cuisine it is not. It is located in a valley in what is known as “The Gardens” by locals who prefer not to tack Manurewa onto their address. Ask anyone who lives there where thy reside and the answer is always “Oh! The Gardens”. This phenomenon is also seen by residents of St Johns who claim variously Remuera or Kohimarama and residents of Glen Innes who claim Glendowie or St Heliers.

So why Volare? Sure it is less than two kms as the crow flies so it is convenient but hardly convenient for anyone staying on council business unless they are staying in a dodgy local motor in that displays room rates by the hour.

Could the date be important?

Well 27 September 2009 was a Sunday, and it is also 4 days before the 1st of October. Wikipedia lists 1 October 1956 as Len Brown’s date of birth, so too does a North Shore Times article about Len Brown.

Could it be that Len Brown had an early birthday celebration at Volare with friends and family and charged it to the ratepayers? Perhaps Thursday wasn’t convenient to the diners to celebrate Len’s birthday.

I wonder if they toasted the ratepayers as we paid for Len’s little birthday celebration? We can’t know of course unless Len Brown discloses who was there and the exact details of $810. Technically he can be compelled to do so because if he charged it to the ratepayer, which he demonstrably did, then it is council business and subject to the LGOIM Act. However we know Len Brown has gone to great lengths to conceal the details of this dinner, so possibly he cares not a jot for the implications of the law, which isn’t a good space to be in considering he is a lawyer.

Either way someone who is so reckless with public funds, and so obfuscatory cannot and should not be standing for public office for our Super City.


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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

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