Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: The Auckland Council as leaky building

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  • Tom Semmens,

    Did anyone else hear any of the contradictory claptrap from the spokesman for the first of greedy batters up this morning on Morning Report?

    Quote from the press release of the loftily self-titled "New Zealand Council For Infrastructure Development" (membership $9,000 per annum, big business only need apply):

    "“Auckland wouldn‟t be in this current mess if politicians had excised greater commitment to get results when they were running the services from council departments. It hasn‟t worked, and it is time for a new approach and fresh start.”

    We now have our very own Dolchstosslengende, and the volk of Auckland have no alternative but the firm hand of Rodney Hide and Mr. Selwood's fascism to save their city.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1711 posts Report Reply

  • Richard Matthews,

    NZ Council for Infrastructure Developments sound like ACT people. This is all starting to sound like the return of Rogernomics and a plan to sell Auckland's assets.

    A thoughtful post here on the question I can't work out: Why is the poll-sensitive government ignoring the noise from Auckland?
    http://www.aucklandtrains.co.nz/2010/03/15/why-is-the-govt-riding-out-the-super-city-uproar/

    Can't understand why the Herald continues to run John Roughan's laughable pieces when there are some good new voices out there.

    Auckand • Since Jan 2010 • 6 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Hide is now at a point where he's prepared to tell flat-out lies about this stuff.

    He just told Sean Plunket on Morning Report that CCOs are "bound to do what council wants them to do. They're entirely directed by local councils."

    If I were an Opposition MP, I'd go hard on this, and outright accuse him of lying to the public. Because that's what he's done.

    He also justified his reforms on the basis that "Auckland ratepayers have spoken." WTF?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 17973 posts Report Reply

  • Julie Fairey,

    I heard that too Russell and couldn't believe he had the gall. What drugs are they on, on Planet Cabinet, that they think that people won't notice that they are appointing all the CCO people directly from the Beehive?

    Orcland • Since Dec 2007 • 216 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    To clarify, NRT's summary of Mike Lee's column on this issue:

    - The Auckland Council will be unable to appoint (or dismiss) the Auckland Transport chair and deputy chair.

    - Auckland Transport is not required by legislation to act in accordance with the requirements of its shareholder (the Auckland Council).

    - The Auckland Transport Board is not made accountable to the Auckland Council.

    - The Auckland Council may be able to make changes to Auckland Transport's statement of intent but, unlike the Crown Entities Act, this bill has no specific provision requiring Auckland Transport to act in accordance with this statement of intent.

    - Auckland Transport is not required to give effect to the Regional Land Transport Strategy, or any other Auckland Council policy that relates to the transport agency.

    - Auckland Transport could set up companies, sell assets and enter into major financial commitments without the approval of Auckland Council, even where the transactions may leave the council with significant liabilities or commitments.

    - Auckland Transport won't be required to have regard for the wider land use and development objectives of the Auckland Council.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 17973 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler,

    He just told Sean Plunket on Morning Report that CCOs are "bound to do what council wants them to do. They're entirely directed by local councils."

    Was he talking about CCOs generally, or specific CCOs in Auckland that don't yet exist? Because you seem to think the latter, but it reads like he's being sneaky and saying the former (possibly disingenuously, given that I don't know the question).

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 2971 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    Yes we find it amusing that Wellington mocks our waterfront compared to it's, but hey it's your city that thinks it appropriate to copy Hollywood. ;)

    OMG ! Hollywood has a waterfront!
    Did I miss the big earthquake?
    What happened to Santa Monica,
    Culver city, Bel Air & Beverly Hills?
    ;- )

    Quote from the press release of the loftily self-titled "New Zealand Council For Infrastructure Development" (membership $9,000 per annum, big business only need apply):

    "“Auckland wouldn't be in this current mess if politicians had excised greater commitment to get results when they were running the services from council departments. It hasn't worked, and it is time for a new approach and fresh start.”

    Do ya think they really mean excised?
    or exercised?
    To tax or to cut out - must be ACT people -
    so either a Freudian slip or a credo for life!

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 4229 posts Report Reply

  • Robbie Siataga,

    hahaha... i just looked up Steve Selwood and lo and behold, he's the ex car salesman from my hometown of Milton Sth Otago that i first got an after school job with wayyyy back in the day...

    ...and i didnt trust the shonky mofo then either !

    Since Feb 2010 • 259 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca,

    OMG ! Hollywood has a waterfront!

    Well yes Ian ,I think it does :)
    Haven't you been down to Venice , it's all Hollywood down there, then a mere 27km stroll up the road to Sunset Boulevard followed by a small trot up through Laurel Canyon, more Hollywood there than you could shake a stick at. Mr Pedantic.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 5728 posts Report Reply

  • Christopher Dempsey,

    Was he talking about CCOs generally, or specific CCOs in Auckland that don't yet exist? Because you seem to think the latter, but it reads like he's being sneaky and saying the former (possibly disingenuously, given that I don't know the question).

    I don't think question needs to be answered.

    Parnell / Tamaki-Auckland… • Since Sep 2008 • 635 posts Report Reply

  • Julie Fairey,

    Graeme, given that Hide also said that there was absolutely no intention to use the supercity stuff in Auckland as a template for other amalgamations, I think we can assume he meant the Auckland CCOs.

    Although he did go on a bit about the CCOs already operating in Akl and how wonderful they are, even stating that Bob Harvey had given a speech about their wonderfulness last week.

    Which brings me back to the point that we are all calling these new organisations CCOs when in fact they are not. The crucial second C, "controlled", has no relation to the first, "council", in the model they are adopting in Auckland.

    They're CCOs, Jim, but not as we know them.

    So perhaps we shoudl bloody well call them something else!

    Orcland • Since Dec 2007 • 216 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    I paraphrased at one point what I thought Craig was saying, and have been answering questions about it since.

    OK, I was going to stay out of this because I need to start paying down the bad karma over-draft instead of adding to it. But here goes...

    1) I made the rather limited point that I'd be a damn sight more impressed by the furious editorialising if the media outlets concerned hadn't long ago decided that serious, in-depth coverage of local government was a waste of time. One of my hobby horses, I know. But not exactly a thread jack.

    2) Gio responded with some snark about how it's "my lot" who've raped and murdered democracy or some such...

    3) Graeme replied with the totally accurate observation that unless I'm a downlow Labour-supporter, "my lot" didn't actually kick off the process.

    4) From there on in, if folks wants to divine some deep dark subtext in what I write while ignoring the actual text, knock yourselves out. I've actually got to spend the day on productive, revenue-generating activity that doesn't involve dashing my head against a metaphorical brick wall until I've made a Jackson Pollock-ish mural.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11621 posts Report Reply

  • Mikaere Curtis,

    If I were an Opposition MP, I'd go hard on this, and outright accuse him of lying to the public. Because that's what he's done.

    I'm going to suggest to Dave Clendon that he does exactly that.

    Tamaki Makaurau • Since Nov 2006 • 443 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca,

    More Auckland City Council antics. Who is pulling who here? Oh that's right, it's the other one. Worse than a "straw man", it's a smiling ass ass in.
    Really it's not my fault, I'm the nice guy!

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 5728 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Was he talking about CCOs generally, or specific CCOs in Auckland that don't yet exist? Because you seem to think the latter, but it reads like he's being sneaky and saying the former (possibly disingenuously, given that I don't know the question).

    I think you do him too much credit. The discussion was entirely about Auckland's new CCOs, subsequent to the letter from the head of Local Government NZ.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 17973 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler,

    I think you do him too much credit. The discussion was entirely about Auckland's new CCOs, subsequent to the letter from the head of Local Government NZ.

    I'm suggesting (without having heard the discussion) that Rodney knew the discussion was about Auckland's new CCOs, and knew the criticisms were accurate, and didn't want to say this, so chose to make a statement about CCOs generally, trying to pull the wool over everyone's eyes, but "without technically lying".

    I'm not sure that this would be to his credit.

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 2971 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca,

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 5728 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    I'm suggesting ...

    That would be a very generous interpretation.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 17973 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    Haven't you been down to Venice , it's all Hollywood down there, then a mere 27km stroll up the road to Sunset Boulevard followed by a small trot up through Laurel Canyon, more Hollywood there than you could shake a stick at. Mr Pedantic.

    I didn't think any ped antics were allowed...
    isn't it unamerican to walk in California?
    But I do take your point about cultural high tide lines - serfs up!

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 4229 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    Top Job Contenders

    Could someone send Bob Parker (the incumbent & encumbering Chch mayor) and Tony Marryatt (the overpaid Chch City CEO*) the application forms, please...

    *oh by the way Tony, Dave Henderson has only bought one of those properties back ~ what are you doing with the rest?
    or are the citizens of Chch just holding them for Dave? - ain't we nice...

    Henderson said yesterday he had no "firm plans" to buy back the other properties, but he previously said he would exercise that right.
    The next available property is Sydenham Square in Colombo St, which will be offered back to him in December this year.
    The southern portion of the old Para Rubber site will become available in December next year, the Penny Cycles site in January 2012 and the Welles St site in the central city in July 2014.

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 4229 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Top Job Contenders

    David Rankin? Yikes. Rankin copped a thrashing in submissions to the Royal Commission:

    By inference and name much of this criticism was aimed at Auckland City chief executive David Rankin, who oversees the region's largest council. His decision to introduce a new council logo behind the backs of elected councillors was raised several times.

    A former associate of Rankin at the old East Coast Bays City Council, Graham Parfitt, said he showed "total disdain for the democratic process" back then and this had characterised his term as chief executive at Auckland City.

    Gawd ...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 17973 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Semmens,

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1711 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Look! An eagle!

    Indeed. Given that DPF has now knocked out two editorial roundups without mentioning the Super City City editorials, and seems to be actively allergic to to the topic, it's hard to see this Act-sourced nonsense as anything other than a very lame diversion from the actually political news.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 17973 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca,

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 5728 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    I'm surprised that Mike Lee thought the government were ever "listening". Their steadfast determination to split off Transport and Infrastructure functions for the benefit of Mr Sellwood and chums is a clue, as is the identity of the Minister of those two areas.

    The ministers argue that Auckland Transport will operate in the same way as the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA).

    This is simply not the case. The Minister of Transport has far greater control over NZTA than Auckland Council will have over Auckland Transport.

    Moreover, no council in Auckland has ever set up a controlled organisation to control local roads. Local roads are crucial to the fabric of our communities.

    Issues over local roads do not only require commercial or technical responses. They need solutions which are appropriate to the local community.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 15753 posts Report Reply

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