Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Gifts and inducements kept secret by funding board

AUCKLAND RESCUE HELICOPTER TRUST

TUESDAY 11 MARCH 2014

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Gifts and inducements kept secret by funding board

The secretive Auckland Regional Amenities Funding Board is refusing to release its confidential “gifts and inducements register” which details which of its members have received free tickets from the orchestra, theatre and opera businesses it funds ratepayers money.

The board has increased funding to the orchestra, theatre and opera businesses each year while slashing funding to the Auckland Rescue Helicopter Trust which has a policy of not providing gifts to members of the Funding Board.

The trust runs the essential Westpac Rescue Helicopter which last year carried out 923 emergency rescue missions.

In 2008, parliament legislated that the rescue helicopter service would be part-funded by the amenities board to the tune of $1.5 million a year. The board has since slashed this funding by 70% to just $450,000 a year. with

Over the same period, the board has increased funding to the Auckland Philharmonic Orchestra over the level indicated by parliament by 96% to nearly $3 million, to the Auckland Theatre Company by 77% to nearly $1.5 million and to the New Zealand Opera by 60% to $800,000 (see table).

The chairman of the rescue helicopter service, Murray Bolton, said the constant funding cuts would not be tolerated any longer, especially as the helicopter service was the only one of ten amenities to have had its funding cut by the board.

“We are already suing this board for irrationality, illegality and unfairness with respect to their decisions for 2013/14 and we will sue them again every year until they restore our funding to something at least comparable with the amount indicated by parliament,” Mr Bolton said.

“We are an essential rescue service for the people of Auckland, with 86% public support.”

Mr Bolton said the rescue service wondered whether its mistake over the years had been not providing free joyrides to members of the board, most of whom have an arts background.

“We think the media and the people of Auckland should be able to see the board’s secret gifts and inducements register, so everyone can know which of them have accepted gifts and inducements from the orchestra, theatre, opera or any of the other amenities they fund.”

Mr Bolton said details of planned litigation relating to the 2014/15 year would be released before the end of April.

END

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

'Tea Break Bill' Passes: Gordon Campbell On Bad Labour Laws And Poor Safety

By co-incidence, one of the prime dangers of the government’s new employment relations law has been underlined by the release of the death and injury statistics among workers at New Zealand ports. These are highly profitable enterprises for the port owners.

The Port of Tauranga for instance, is expecting its current full-year profit to be between $78 million and $83 million and other ports are enjoying similar boom times – but they are also highly dangerous places for the people who work on or around the port premises. At the Port of Tauranga, there have been 26 serious accidents since 2011, and two deaths. More>>

 

Parliament Today:

No Charges: Outcome Of Operation Clover Investigation

Police have completed a multi-agency investigation, Operation Clover, into the activities of a group calling themselves “The Roast Busters”. The 12 month enquiry focused on incidents involving allegations of sexual offending against a number of girls in the Waitemata Police district and wider Auckland area... More>>

ALSO:

UNICEF Report: NZ Cautioned On "Stagnating" Child Poverty

An international report by UNICEF has found that child poverty rates in New Zealand have barely changed since 2008, despite similar sized countries significantly reducing child poverty during the recent recession. More>>

ALSO:

Funding Report: Two Pathways For Transport In Auckland

Commissioned by Auckland Council, the group was asked to investigate two possible pathways for raising $300 million per year ($12 billion over 30 years) to pay for the improvements needed to help fix Auckland’s transport system. More>>

ALSO:

Pay Equity: Equal Pay Win In Court Of Appeal

CTU: The Court of Appeal has made a historic decision paving the way for a substantial equal pay claim for aged care workers. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The TPP Finishing Line, And Amazon’s Woes

If the Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal wasn’t such a serious matter, this would be pretty funny… More>>

ALSO:

TV3 Video: Three Die On Roads Over Labour Weekend

The official holiday period ended at 6am Tuesday, with three deaths on the roads during the Labour Day weekend. More>>

Employment Relations Bill: Govt Strains To Get Tea Break Law Through

The Government has been left with egg on its face - failing to get its much-vaunted, but hugely unpopular, meal break law passed in the first week of its new term, Labour spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says. More>>

ALSO:

Guns: Police Association Call To Arm Police Full Time

"The new minister gave his view, that Police do not need to be armed, while standing on the forecourt of parliament. The dark irony was that the interview followed immediately after breaking news of a gunman running amok in the Canadian parliament in Ottawa..." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news