Looney Len's master plan didn't last 5 minutes

Looney Len Brown cried in public, he said he was being picked on, he said he was innocent, he said that the only fair court in the land was the Auditor-General, he said he would be cleared.

Well, that was the plan, chuck it to the Auditor-General, get a clearance, carry on as though he hadn’t troughed it up, broke the council rules, said he would continue to break the council rules and then convince everyone he was somehow perfectly qualified to run the Super City.

Len Brown - TrougherThe Auditor General has refused to investigate the credit card expenses of Manukau mayor Len Brown.

In an emotional address to Manukau Council on June 15 Brown said he wanted the Auditor General to look into the way he had used his council credit.

“I’m going to the Auditor General with what I’ve got, I can’t find any other fair court in the land,” he told the council’s policy and activities committee.

His request for the auditor general to step in followed scrutiny over his card use which included buying personal family items such as Christmas ham, a stereo system and a hotel visit. The items were all later repaid but the purchase of them went against council policy which states the credit cards cannot ever be used for personal items.

Brown’s credit card reconciliations were absent of tax receipts for many of the transactions which made up the $16,977.22 he spent since becoming mayor in 2007. Council policy, and Inland Revenue legislation, requires a tax invoice is retained for all purchases, especially for those over $50.

But the Auditor General today said it had declined his request.

He balled his eyes out nearly two weeks ago, but only got around to writing to the Auditor-General on Tuesday this week. The Auditor-General thought about his request for all of about 5 minutes and told him to bugger off.

A spokeswoman for the Auditor General confirmed a letter was received on Wednesday from Brown and a response given to him today which said an investigation would not happen.

The office would not release a reason why, or give media a copy of the letter, saying it was up to Brown to do so, if he wanted.

In a statement released by the council this afternoon, Brown said he accepted the Auditor General’s decision to not spend time looking into his expenses.

“They acknowledge that I have made mistakes, but they are sufficiently confident in our existing audit arrangements. The letter states that the council’s response is appropriate and there is no need for further involvement of the Auditor-General,” Brown said.

“I have acknowledged these same mistakes and reimbursed the council.  I was confident that Manukau City Council’s processes were robust.”

His statement is facetious in the extreme. The council’s processes weren’t robuts, they were as bullet-proof as a singlet. Len Brown troughed it up for 25 months and the processes never once got a proper tax receipt, only once in 25 months did Len Brown sign off his returns as required by the council card policy and never once did his CFO ever question his expenses. Robust? Bollocks!

Len Brown’s pres release says he paid it back, he hasn’t he still owes ratepayers for his Volare dinner. It wasn’t a fundraiser, it was an opera night, it wasn’t council business, it was a dual celebration, for Looney len’s birthday and for a new child born a few days before, and a judge was entertained.

When will Looney Len come clean?

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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.

To read Cam’s previous articles click on his name in blue.