What about the rail or swimming pool users Len?

Conor Roberts has been on holiday so Len Brown comes up with a politically terrible strategy to enforce user pays…on dog owners, breaking the rule you don’t piss off dog or cat owners if you want to win their votes.

Auckland Council is proposing a rise in dog registration fees, to fund its spending on managing dogs in the region.

Dog owners now pay $104 annually, which is set to increase to $160.

The council says ratepayers are subsiding the $12 million spent on managing dogs throughout Auckland.

It’s proposing that 80% of those costs should be be recovered through an increase in dog fees.

However the plan has caused a backlash, with a Facebook page already started by disgruntled dog owners.

Hopefully Len can take this a step further and start calling for users of public transport, the art galleries and swimming pools to stop bludging so he can reduce rates by removing subsidies.

Imagine how much better off we would all be if the same rule applied to all areas of council subsidy with users paying for 80% of the costs of everything.


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.

  • Hakim of phut

    The reason is that there is a public benefit to galleries , swimming pools etc.
    Owning a dog  benefits  who exactly ?
    Talking of swimming pools , its was  former Mayor Banks who went ahead  with the costly  refurbishment/rebuild  of the Tepid Baths.- who is going to pay for that exactly. It aint going to come from entrance fees. $15m  or so , the price keeps rising. And they rushed it through before the Supercity as  Banks henchman put it.

    Mr Moyle said it was important that the upgrade began as soon as possible, because of the changes that would come with the Super City.Under the new council rebuilding the baths probably would not be a priority.Nice to know C&R priorities were in the right place

    • politically unstable

       There is only a benefit to the people who use them. I dont use the swimming pools so they do not benefit me.

      • Hakim of phut

        What about sports grounds, there is a lot of money going into them. Should we charge  local sports clubs the full costs. maybe  $5000 each weekend.
        Careful what you ask for 

      • politically unstable

         I was pretty much expecting that response. If a rugby player has exclusive rights to a sportfield 24/7 365 days a year then there needs to be a price paid. I dont think you will find a “one rule fits all situations” for user pays. .

      • Hakim of phut

        Not exclusive use , but a lot on money is spent on level surface, lights , drainage, turf , repairs etc that is for sole benefit of the sports club. Effectively  no one has use  while they are playing.
        . In other cases private land is leased for sports clubs sole use. And  a few clubs own their own grounds and that isnt cheap to run
        But of course there is the public benefit  which is why they arent charged 

    • Philip ure a cock

      I never thought this could happen, but I agree with Lensky and Fukhim of Shit on this one. I believe there is some merit in subsidising social goods such as pools, libraries etc, but not crap-all-over-the-place bloody dogs.

  • Mr_Blobby

    The Animal control Nazi’s are worse than the parking Nazi’s. Worse because they are private companies with the powers and protection usually only awarded to the state. Powers like the right to enter private property, stop people on the street and demand personal details, issue outrageous fines with no accountability.
    The Council like any normal person or company should have to learn to live within there means. If that means cutting back on unwanted services then so be it.
    How many packs of wild dogs have we got overrunning the city, not many if any? 12 Million Is that a joke? Seriously they spend 12 million on animal management.

    • Hakim of phut

      100s   per year have hospital treatment for dog bites.  It is a a big problem

      • Mr_Blobby

        100s eh how many hundreds.

      • Hakim of phut

        “New Zealand Health Information Statistics recorded 309 overnight hospital visits after dog bite incidents in 2000, 293 in 2001, and 324 in 2002. Incidence rate figures peaked in 1996 at 7.5 per 100,000. Given a population of 3.9 million in 2002, the incidence rate for dog bite incidents was 8.3 per 100,000.”
         300+ overnight  hospital stays per year , is how many hundreds.
        Thousands more are self or GP treated.

        Careful what you ask for

      • jabba

        If a dog bites someone, there is a good chance it will be killed .. if an arsehole hits someone then there is a chance he will get away scott free .. those bloody dogs aye?

    • starboard

      just tell them to fuck off like I do…works for me.

  • jabba

    we live in rural Akl and have 2 dogs so will be hit yet again. These wankers are already coming up with extended rules about where dogs can go etc with beaches an example. How can say St Heliers/Takapuna be compared with Kariotahi where horse’s run up and down all day shitting on it. By the way, it’s great the horses have this place to run/train.
    Brown and his mates can all fuck off as far as I’m concerned.
    And who benefits from having a dog .. whats that got to do with anything???

  • Euan Rt

    Good call whale. If we are going to have user pays, then we need to be more consistent in applying it.

  • peterwn

    Problem is – it is generally not the licenced dogs that cause the problems. But, wait a minute, it is left wingers who are more likely to have unlicenced dogs, and more likely to have pit bulls, etc. So making owners of licenced dogs pay for control of unlicenced dogs is just another form of ‘rich prick’ tax. Presumably dog related fines are not credited to the dog control budget.

    Incidentally one reason Banksie lost the Mayoralty in 2004 was because he got up the nose of dog owners with outrageous fines.

    • Hakim of phut

      It was a motorway through Hobsons Bay. 
      Thats why hes in favour of trains NOW

  • Felldownagain

    The logical consequence is that rates will fall for those non-dog owners when their subsidy is removed.


  • Mr_Blobby

    Never ceases to amaze me, Dog owners, walking down the street with there plastic bags. Where is the logic of putting perfectly good manure into a plastic bag that is going to last a thousand years then putting it into a plastic rubbish bag that will last a thousand years. Then bury it.

    • MarcWills

      And your suggestion is Mr Blooby?

      • Hakim of phut

        He wants the dog owners to put it in their pockets and then take home to the garden .

      • Euan Rt

        Paper bags would be an option.

      • Own a cat with no licence fees and goes and buries its shit in someone elses property but never its own. Out of sight out of mind and what you know does not hurt you unless you catch one in the act.

    • Gazzaw

      Banning dogs in urban areas would be an even better one Euan. I have owned three dogs so I am no dog hater but the city is no place to keep them particularly as the quarter acre section is no longer the norm. There’s a bloke in our street who has got two huskies in his townhouse FFS! He has to take them on the equivalent of an Arctic traverse twice a day with him on his bike and his two dogs on long traces leading the way. Looks like Nanook of the North, the stupid bastard. Doesn’t stop his dogs crapping on my lawn or waking up the neighbourhood in the middle of the night.

      • Euan Rt

        I hear you. As an ex dairy farmer, I like dogs and have had a few working dogs. but now I live in the city, I would never dream of having a large breed dog that needs space to run around. If people only knew how much distance a dog covers when not confined. Keeping them in the city and taking them for a walk in the park is a joke. I do not profess to know how much exercise a small dog needs though.

    • peterwn

       Use biodegradable plastic bags – biogradable Dom-Post plastic bags make good pooper bags

  • Matt

    The council spends far more money out or our rates on roads than it does on things like public transport, perhaps we need to start charging people more for the roads they use as well.

    Even this council which is supposedly so PT friendly and anti car are planning on spending twice as much on roads as they are on PT over the next 30 years

    • Butts_McButts

      Except we already paid for the roads, and Wellington’s roads, and Christchurch’s roads. I’m not paying again to drive on roads that my taxes have paid for multiple times over and I can use less and less as every form of transport gets it own special lane – all of which except for motorists who pay some sort of fuel levy or registration charge. How many times should we tax people?

      • Matt

        Road taxes pay for state highways but they only partially cover local roads which is the vast majority of roads that are out there. At most the NZTA only pay for 50% of local roads with the rest coming out of our rates or other funding sources.

        Just looking at the AK councils long term plan and in it they say that over the next 10 years $12b will be spent on operating expenses of the transport network. These are things line maintenance and renewals of roads and footpaths, PT, traffic management and planning etc. Of this the funding expected to come out of general rates is $7b for which they will spend $4.3b on roads and $2.7b on PT.

        The point is if your going to start charging PT users the full cost of running the PT network then road users should have to pay the full cost of the road network. I agree that Auckland has been subsidising the rest of the country when it comes to transport (and other areas) for a long time.

        The other thing with PT subsidies is is that they help to make PT services more viable and people using those services help delay or stop the need for increasingly expensive new roads. At the moment PT carries the equivalent of more than a 12 lane motorway into the city every morning. How much do you think it would cost to replicate that let alone all of the extra parking buildings that would be needed.

      • Hakim of phut

        A road has a life of  7-12 years before being rebuilt, all over again. Suburban streets a bit longer but need resealing say about every 10 years.
        It all costs!.  
        Do you buy a car once and then expect to pay nothing for the rest of  your life?
        You are too silly for words with that comment

      • Butts_McButts

        Matt – My point was more that expecting Auckland motorists to just make way yet again is unfair when they’ve been treated as cash cows for the rest of the country for decades. 

        Hakim – Your condescending responses doesn’t actually address the point that motorists pay not only to use the roads, but also cover the costs of converting those roads for other road users who pay far less in road user charges, if they pay anything at all.

        Arguing for user pays is all very well and good, but people seem to confuse it for ‘everyone else should pay but me’.

      • Bob

        Matt – Public Tansport carrying more than a 12 lane motorway into the city every morning? Any references to support this. Sounds like wishful thinking.

      • Matt

        Bob – Already 50% of people entering the CBD during the morning peak do so via PT, that is about 33000 people (probably more as that study was done a few years ago). A single motorway lane at most can move about 2400 vehicles per hour but occupancy rates are only on average around 1.2-1.4 people per vehicle.

  • Matt L

    Also on the issues of dogs, it is probably a case of the responsible ones carrying the cost of all those who don’t bother to register their dogs. Putting up the cost will just put more people into that second bucket putting even more pressure on those that do pay as costs like dog control won’t get any cheaper.

    Perhaps they should do a blitz of the city, any dog found without registration is taken and the owners have 24 hours to pay and/or prove it is registered or the dog is put down. It might help stop solve quite a few issues like dog attacks.

  • Gold Coin donation for the pools as a minimum for everyone 5 and over, discounts maybe for Super Golds – I said discounts not freebies and continue to peddle those retail sales of hot chips and coke. Give in one hand and take in the other.

    By the way pools are meant to be a local board decision on fees and operations – not the governing body. Bulk fund the Local Boards and let them set fees to cover their operation and planning costs?

    As for rail users and art galleries – no opinion on art galleries but rail – easy one. Flat line the fares to either Child under 18, Adult and Super Gold. Charge for Zones rather that distance stages like Brisbane with kids, those with disabilities and Super Golds paying X amount and Adults paying Y amount. No Tertiary Concessions which gets abused – no freebies unless the Golden Oldies like a surtax to pay for this stuff with an aging population. Oh and can we have rail police please so we can fine the living daylights out of fare evaders please – they cost us all…

  • Chris

    Hey Hakim, think about this. I’m a ratepayer and dog owner and my dog registration fees pay for Animal Control Officers to keep YOU safe from being attacked on the street, by rounding up free-roaming dangerous dogs.

    Under the so-called user pays regime you are nothing but a stinking freeloader. If you wish you continue you enjoy the protection of Animal Control Officers then you better dig into your own pocket and pay for them.

    • Hakim of phut

      Blaming the victim Chris.?
        As they say there are no bad dogs just bad owners. If your dogs so much as lung at me while passing I will have them destroyed.500 hospitals stays for being savaged let alone  1000s of  smaller bites mean the the bad owners will suffer heavily

      • I like your reasoning…it is the same as what I have been saying about guns don;t kill people, people kill people…but you didn’t accept that argument.

        There are bad dogs, some are natural born killers, like cats they should be shot.

  • jabba

    just saw it on the TV News .. btds. We have 2 that are fantastic pets .. they help keep US fit. They get mega excercise including agility training. They are registered and have 2-3 health checks each year and food to die for. They get a raw meat diet PLUS once a week they get rabbit/hare/possum and gnaw on frozen oily (pilchard??) fish. We have a good sized fully fenced section and a council certificate allowing us to have 2 dogs. That was from the Franklin Council so god knows what the so called Super City will do. They cost us a lot of money each year as responsible owners and now this.

  • @BoJangles

    ..they put the cost of cigarettes up to rid the place of smoke…..


    ..so put the cost of dogs up to rid the place of shit…..

  • Pokerface

    I’m happy with 80/20 split, if the responsible owner pays 20% and Irresponsible owner pays 80%. 104,000 dogs in Ak – at the new rates it gives the Council >$15 Million. What are they planning that costs $15 million?
    Luckily I don’t live in Ak – my 2 dogs cost me <$80 per annum. 

  • Heathernjohnc

    best description of a dog i heard was “all teeth at one end and all turd at the other”. i lost count of the times i’ve encountered dogs while out jogging who tried to have a go at me, both licenced and not.

  • Detcom20

    i get a 10 cent plastic tag for my dog rego fee… which isn’t even needed cause he is microchipped as per the law…  nothing else

  • Pokerface

    The Facebook page was started by Dog Agility people. This is their sport, and they are very passionate about their dogs. Some have 6 dogs or more – all very well cared for. Much like cyclist and their bikes, or hunters and their guns…