Ports problems all Len’s fault

The Sunday Star-Times has revealed exactly why it is that Len Brown is running silent on the Ports dispute. It is because it has all pretty much stemmed from his demands for monopoly rents from the Port:

Auckland Council’s demand for a “monopoly rent” from Ports of Auckland is facing a backlash from business as well as from the unions.

The political manoeuvring behind the council’s drive to double Ports of Auckland’s profitability were revealed on Tuesday night when council chief executive Doug McKay and mayor Len Brown gave presentations to a meeting of the Auckland Property Investors Association at which they outlined their position on the port’s future and the industrial action it is facing.

McKay said a review of the council-owned port’s performance was undertaken shortly after the new super-city was formed in November 2010, comparing it with other ports around the world.

At the time, the port was earning a return on investment of about 6 per cent. The report, which the council refused to release to the Sunday Star-Times last week, recommended the port should be able to double its profitability to achieve a 10 to 12 per cent return “at the very least,” McKay said.

On the basis of that advice, the council’s “political wing” – its elected representatives – set the port company the goal of lifting its return on investment to 10 to 12 per cent over the next three to five years. That led the company to review its costs and propose new working arrangements for its wharfies, leading to the recent series of strikes on the wharves.

While McKay expressed disappointment that negotiations between the port company and unions had broken down, he did not appear surprised.

“I keep reminding Len [Brown] that you have to break a few eggs to make an omelette,” he said.

Well, Len Brown has gone up in my estimation for wanting to break union eggs to make a port company omelette. Who would have ever dreamed of a Labour mayor breaking a union?


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  • AnonWgtn

    Earning 6% – I doubt it – from my understanding it was more like a low 4% – where do these idiots get their figures from from Len eh!

  • Jason

    “Breaking a few eggs to make an omelette?”

    Sounds like something Stalin would have said.

  • SST got the title wrong – it should of been “Transport Committee Chair demands monopoly rent”  No need to guess who I am referring to there. Just did an extensive piece of commentary on it at my blog site. Put it this way I think I gave a more wrapping of the knuckles did then the SST just did. :P

  • Jimmie

    A classic example of the leftist conundrum – one hand Brown has a natural desire to support his union mates and on the other hand he wants more $$ coming in for him to waste on railways etc.

    Because he is double minded on the matter it turns into a fiasco.

    Like ask a lefty if they support Maori women speaking on Marae. On the one hand they are all for womens’ equality and on the other hand they are for Maori ‘myths & traditions’ so what do ya do leftie?

    Exactly what Mayor Brown has done dither around and look for a path through the middle and make a total hash of it all. I guess he will be doing a fair bit of face slapping come election night heh.

  • NoMorePort

    Do you think the reason len and the council are so quiet in their support of PoA is because they actually want the port out of there and the unions are doing their nasty work for them. Imagine. Without PoA you could connect akl to the entire waterfront all the way to eastern bays. No more eyesore. No more container trucks. Go maritime union!!