Thoughts on Len’s Jafa-taxes

Len Brown couldn’t be trusted with a council credit card – what makes him think he can prudently spend $10 billion dollars?


THANK YOU for being a subscriber. Because of you Whaleoil is going from strength to strength. It is a little known fact that Whaleoil subscribers are better in bed, good looking and highly intelligent. Sometimes all at once! Please Click Here Now to subscribe to an ad-free Whaleoil.

  • Thorn

    Auckland is the Supine City noted for its history of f*ck-ups.

  • SO its called The JAFA Tax – I can see this being played out until the next round of elections

  • Petal

    History has shown that some insightful people, considered quite mad at the time, did the unpopular thing and made a huge investment in city infrastructure that really only got appreciated by subsequent generations.

    The trouble is, I really can’t see light rail being that sort of a success for Auckland.

    Len’s just trying to get a bigger Aotea Centre going here.

    • jonno1

      Brown is talking heavy rail, not light rail. Still, if anything light rail (trams) would be worse; just look at the congestion all those empty bus lanes create already by reducing the number of usable lanes. Not to mention closing off Grafton Bridge to cars during the day, which I won’t mention.

      • Anonymous

        Not nesscarily – the dead weight loss of those now-empty bus lanes could be offset with trams :P But would you want to spend that much money to do it? I can understand trams on Tamaki Drive from a tourism point of view, but Len’s track record of actually doing shit outside of his precious CBD is appalling. Did anything actually happen about that extra pedestrian walkway he was going to single-handedly install to save cyclists, or was he just full of shit as usual? You be the judge. 

  • Gazzaw

    Lets take a look at what has happened under his watch so far.

    * RWC Opening night fuck up
    * Aotea Square fuck up
    * POAL fuck up

    All in the space of 15 months. I’m sure there’s more that others here can add to the list. And this dunderhead has another 19 months to go. Lenny needs to go now or the government step in. Maybe Auckland’s need for a commissioner will supercede that of Ch’ch.

    • Agent BallSack

      Slapping himself stupid and crying on TV…big fuck up, left the job half done.

  • Vlad

    Please make this a mission WO, this is a looming fuckup of monumental proportions.

    • Muffin

      WO I am hoping the army can be mobilised to nip this crap from Loopy Lefty Len in the bud. Looking fwd to ensuring Len doesnt get a second term. Hes the guy that suggested everyone take the train to the rugby world cup opening night and then he got driven there.

  • Nigel201065

    This is going to be another complete fuck up
    Lie’n Brown is using the old leftist trick of here is what’s going to happen, how do you want us to pay for it as if its a pre-gone conclusion and has now taken the argument away from the fact that, apart from half a dozen twats, no one want this rail project

  • Cmc89

    Where is the option for a)cut back Council spending to reallocate funds.
    b) asset sales
    Without looking at these options all that is left is more tax.

  • ConwayCaptain

    Wait for the exodus of businesses and people from Akl.

    If this looks klike going through businesses etc will be on their bike.

    All of Loopy’s ideas add costs to doing business in Akl when everyone is trying to cut costs.

    • Gazzaw

      His proposed increases for commercial property are obscene. Companies will just relocate to the provinces. Brown isn’t thick, he’s just bloody obsessed with this lunatic scheme.

  • ConwayCaptain

    I read in the Herald in the last 6 months or so that the cost of leasing industrial premises in akl were in the top 10 in the world.

    Loopy’s costs will push them even higher and the cost of doing business in Akl will be uneconomical.

    Loopy is a typical socialist add costs to the productive sector and ten give the unporductive sector more hand outs.  Just like the NZH article on so called poverty in the last week or so.

    I now live in the S Waikato and my cost of doing biusiness has plummeted.

  • ConwayCaptain

    One must remember that Loopy is/was a lawyer.  They have no idea of costs, just charge and expect people to pay.

    BTW does Loopy’s kids go to a State or Private school???

  • Anonymous

    Contrary to Oil Company Writ, the fact is Auckland needs public transport.  It has a desperate shortage of ways of pushing people around swiftly.   It would be a much smarter and richer city if someone had built it years ago.
    You need to route it over really cheap land and use top planners.   It shouldn’t be where the people are NOW.   The tracks prove it is permanent, so people will trust it to stick around.   They will come.  
    Build it, and they will come.   The housing will, in 20 years, have surged around it.  It will be like a corridor of housing booms.
    Rail construction is costly, yes, but most should be spent on skilled or non-skilled building jobs.  That’s unless some idiot spends billions on a lot of houses to pull down, which is MEGA-DUMB.
    Business starts to establish around all the hubs as the rail establishes.   The key stations, with proper planning, should become a hive of kiosks and barrows.  Great part-time jobs for DPB mums, pooling child-minding those few hours.  
    You should get snacks, quick meals to grab as you pass, (yum, I think it was Leipzig Station in Germany, spectacular salads and baking and boxes of hot food…) and later bistros and established chains too (think places like London and Sydney). 
    There are small shuttles meeting the rush-hour trains to carry people on the final leg.   They and other services (bike hire, taxis, buses) can transfer passengers to the door of wherever they are going.
    Business, business, business.   Jobs, jobs, jobs.   And it brings Auckland back to surging ahead.

  • Matt L

    The thing missing from the debate is that for the 50+ billion that is proposed to be spent on transport over the next 30 years, only about 5 billion is actually for rail, almost all the rest is for more roads e.g. 
    $5b for another road crossing under the harbour
    $1b+ for a tunnel to connect the motorway at Grafton to the port
    $1b+ for a motorway between Onehunga and East Tamaki
    $1.2b on further widening of existing motorways
    $700m+ on upgrading the road to the airport to proper motorway standard
    $1.4b on extending the motorway from Puhoi to Wellsford (although this is already blowing out to around $2b

    This doesn’t include the billions planned to be spent on local roads with projects like AMETI, Dominion Rd, a ton of new roads around Westgate and other new areas.

  • Colin

    Who are the people who are going to use this inner-city loop? Where do they want to travel to? And what for? Is there travel going to be cheaper and as convenient as going by car?
    There are a myriad of serious questios that need to be anwered.

    • Matt L

      Think about it this way, with the tunnel a trip from say Henderson right into the middle of town would take about 30 minutes, regardless of how busy traffic was. If you were deciding between a guaranteed 30 minute trip on a train or one in a car that at peak times could take twice as long as that what would you pick?

      These questions have already been answered by a large number of internationally recognised companies and institutions who have their reputations to uphold

  • nzd.gbp

    Why doesn’t Auckland build an underground metro system? Put most of the stations in places where you want high density housing. Also while we’re at it how about an autobahn from whangarei to auckland and wellington. then down to chch and dunners and one from new plymouth through taupo to gizzy? Let’s stop faffing about with bus lanes and shit. Start spending some of those over priced nz dollars at those underpriced interest rates.

    • A not inconsequential problem called lava flows, followed by the water table. In case you hadn’t noticed there are two harbours and umpteen volcanoes surrounding auckland.

      • nzd.gbp

        I doubt these are the real reasons. It must be cost surely. There’s little point me digging my heels in because I’m not an engineer but there’s a tidal water table here in london as well. Lava flows? Ok. Perhaps. It’d be an interesting exercise to cost it up though no? It makes all the difference to have a great underground. It’s one of the greatest things about london in my opinion. An engineering marvel.

      • ConwayCaptain

        NO metro system in the world runs at a profit and has to be subsidised by Govt.  London, Tokyo, NY, Moscow etc all with populations far in excess of NZ as a whole have metros that cost billions to build in todays money.

        Akl does not have the population to warrant a metro of any size.

        The only way that Akl can have a public transport system that works and doesnt cost the earth to install or run is to have a better BUS system and to utilise the water as well.

        The problem is that most services run into the city but not veryone works in the city and there has to be bus services across the city as well.

        Loopy’s ideas will saddle Akl with debt ofr years to come thus increasing rates etc.

    • dutyfree

       Vector built a tunnel from the city to Penrose substation, using a tunnel boring machine.  It is not big enough for a car, let alone cars.  My recollection is that you need to get the subterranian rights from the surface land owner.  And yes you do need to get under the lava flows. It ran at 20m to 100m below the surface almost all below sea level.

  • Thorn

    Hey Mark Ford, what’s in it for you?

  • Moggy

    Seems to me you all miss the real question – apart from
    lawyers/accountants and merchant wan*ers (leaving aside Asian Students who
    would have a shock if they saw green grass anyway) just exactly who actually
    wants to go to the CBD. This and past councils seem to think it’s the hub for Auckland
    – it isn’t and never has been since the 50’s.

    In all my life as a born and breed Aucklander it has been
    very very clear that people move through the CBD to other places and not stop (due
    to the layout of Auckland which I guess we can not help). Why then is Loppy
    Lens rail around the CBD going to help.

    Get rid of bus lanes, get the motorways sorted so we don’t
    have a bottle neck in Auckland and get the western link finished then worry
    about it – while we are at it open Whenuapai as a joint Military and Domestic
    airbase so we don’t need to have all the north shore going south to fill the
    coffers of Ak Airport for no good reason – it will entice industry around the
    airport and make people stay closer to home. Create for god sake a monorail
    ABOVE the streets down major routes like Dom Rd to airport etc, Dubai has done
    it a bit much better than we could, with a smaller population base as well, but
    it shows it could work. Existing rail routes were set in the “dark ages” and
    bear no relationship to whats needed now nor where we want to go.

    Problem with Mad Len & his cronies is they just have
    no idea how to expand Auckland so it works.