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Politicians need to forget the annual rain dance


Moving Auckland Forward

Hon John Banks QSO
Mayor of Auckland City

5 February 2004

Politicians need to forget the annual rain dance

“Politicians need to get over the annual rain dance known as Waitangi Day and focus their energy on fixing Auckland’s problems. Only then will every New Zealander have a real future,” Auckland City Mayor Hon John Banks said today.

“I do not seek to trivialise Treaty issues or forget our history, but the simple fact is if New Zealand is to move forward, Auckland has to complete its roading and public transport networks without further delay.”

Mr Banks said across the region transport projects have stalled because of decisions taken by politicians and officials in Wellington.

“The North Shore busway and State Highway 20 are just two examples of Wellington running out of excuses for funding their immediate and rapid construction.

“It is unacceptable the Government promises a funding package and support, and then forces delays by not releasing the money until next year and putting other process conditions on the region like re-examining its growth strategies.

“While Members of Parliament talk endlessly about Waitangi, foreshore, seabeds and Maori representation, Auckland is left suffering with costly incomplete infrastructure.

“Naval gazing about who should and who shouldn’t be at Waitangi does nothing to move Auckland forward and insults the intelligence of commuters in gridlock traffic.”

Mr Banks said the sooner politicians of all persuasions realise the votes are in Auckland, and not the Bay of Islands, the better off everyone will be.


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