Some more thoughts on the Special Housing Area debacle

With Auckland Council failing to deliver on the Special Housing Areas in a deliberate attempt to thwart the Government and bolster its own compact city aspirations – a solution is required.

I hear that the Nat’s don’t want to push the issue too hard because they are worried about the political backlash.

But, it’s already happening.

Whilst it is a catch 22, the reality is that there are only two choices:

1. Do nothing, be hammered by Phil Twyford and Andrew Little and eventually lose the next election because the housing woes get worse and New Zealanders get sick of it – voting for change out of desperation;

2. Step in to take control of the process. Sure there will be blood on the floor, but if the problem is solved Kiwi’s will think the Nat’s are decisive, strong and solve problems and that’s a winning formula.

The problem is the stepping in bit.

Nobody is sure what the blood on the floor will be and in the dark of night they fret that its political suicide. Except I don’t believe that it is really is.  

Not a peep of complaint was heard when the Government stepped in at Christchurch to take control of planning and consenting. There is a reason for that – the Council was dysfunctional and useless and everyone knew it.

But that public sentiment about a Council isn’t limited to just Christchurch – it’s country wide and in Auckland the people loathe Auckland Council who have done just about everything they can to upset Aucklanders and alienate themselves.

Political balls are not needed here to solve this problem.

There will be barely a stir except from Len Brown and perhaps a few of his cronies.

I’d wager a bet that the Government could step in, take control and resolve the issue without even a stir. Sure they will spill blood with such a coup but the collateral damage will be limited, and if they do a good job of resolving the matter it will be washed out and forgotten in no time.

Unless something is done, the status quo will stand and it will be very very hard for National to cling on to power.

Voters simply won’t put up with it.

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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.