Time to Call in the Commissioners?

Posted: August 14, 2012 in Uncategorized

How long will it take until Statutory Commissioners get called in to run Auckland City Council? While admittedly Kaipara Distrct Council has a smaller budget and revenue stream, their $80 million debt has proven enough for Kaipara District councillors to resign and request the Government appoint commissioners. Auckland City Council, in addition to passing a budget spending $58 billion, has voted to increase their debt limit ceiling to 275% of total revenue and set interests costs at a maximum of 15% of total revenue!

It’s disturbing to think that, in the short term, rates increases would have been higher were it not for the Council borrowing money to fund Len Brown’s grandiose schemes. It’s terrifying to think that in the long term rates will have to skyrocket to service the interest on over one hundred billion dollars of debt. The long term future for Auckland ratepayers will be one of crushing rates and no hope of relief as big spending socialists go to town on other people’s money.

While there has been a band of a few councillors consistently opposing this level of foolish spending (Brewer, Stewart, Penrose, Wood, Quax), nobody has been pushing actual rates cuts. Even those who are opposing Brown’s budget were themselves only proposing smaller rates increases. Every year it is the same, public outrage fuelled by another round of crushing rates increases which voters forget by election time and vote the same parasitical bastards back in again!

We really need to properly reassess what the role of local Government should actually be when writing the next budget, remembering that this money comes from the pockets of property owners. It isn’t a freebie for politicians to stoke their egos and salivate over their legacies. Making the next budget a rates cutting budget isn’t difficult with a bit of testicular fortitude and an acceptance that the role of Council is to convey sewerage, dispose of rubbish and maintain footpaths. Unfortunately for the poor ratepayer, there isn’t enough glamour in the basics for Brown and comrades.

Did you know the Council had a budget of $8 million to provide financial advice to people for retro-fitting their homes? Neither did I! When the hell did that become a role of the Council? Retired widows can’t afford the rates bill to stay in their own home, yet they’re being robbed so someone else can afford to retrofit theirs!

Len Brown has also managed to get part of his pet project for subsidised swimming pools Auckland wide. Children aged under 16 will now not have to pay to visit a public swimming pool. Is there a shortage of water? Are there no safe beaches to swim at? Why are others having to fund your child’s recreation?

Where cuts absolutely have to be made are to the funding of the disgustingly racist unelected Maori Statutory Board. After these tribalist trough feeders had audited themselves and found themselves to be failing in their duty to Maori, they convinced half the Council to give them another $2 million in order to be able to fix the issues they identified after auditing themselves. The deciding vote that ensured the motion passed (excuse the pun) was cast by John Tamihere who has not even been elected!!! I propose that a future Council vote to reduce the budget for the Maori Statutory Board to zero – including salary payments for its members.

The current council really is a duopoly for Citizens and Ratepayers and City Vision. Both vote for more regulation and more big ticket spending. Out of the five councillors I identified above, none are from Citizens and Ratepayers. Ratepayers need a new ticket at the next local body elections. Ratepayers need representatives who will actually CUT RATES – not just reduce the level of increases. We need to elect people who will take an axe to ludicrous spending like the $200,000 spent on the Botany Garden Festival. The next lot of councillors need the goddamn balls to take on the apartheid Maori Statutory Board and eliminate their funding.

Or, if all else fails, can we just send in the commissioners please?

  1. KP says:

    Plenty of room in Aussie still.. We voted with our feet from Howick.

    In Orange we have a dozen or so councillors who are local businessmen and quite visible, so they can be roundly abused in the street if they do these sorts of things. Strangely, they pick the mayor from their ranks, that position is not voted on by the public.

    The bigger the town, the less accountable the public service.

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