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Another Goff shambles

Thursday, May 2 2019

“Goff said the billion dollar blowout was not a surprise . . . really? How many other non-surprises is this guy sitting on?” Auckland mayoral candidate John Tamihere says.

“How come ratepayers didn’t know about this, and did the Mayor know of this 8 weeks ago when he announced his tilt, and that he would hike rates by another 3.5% per annum?

“And finally, how can his council bean counters come up with $500 million in cost savings and efficiencies overnight? This is just another Goff shambles.”

Tamihere’s stinging criticism follows Goff’s announcement of the City Rail Link (CRL) billion dollar blow out. The project - jointly funded by the Government and Auckland Council - was originally expected to cost $3.4 billion and scheduled for completion in 2024. But last week CRL chief executive Sean Sweeney announced the new estimate for the project has ballooned out to $4.4 billion and the Government and Auckland Council will have to pony up with the shortfall.

“We must protect these major projects so the ratepayer investment is secure, but why is it every time there’s a budget blowout or cost overrun, the ratepayers carry the can. We are actually paying twice. First as taxpayers and secondly ratepayers, and that’s not right,” Tamihere said.

“Who on the CRL Board or those Auckland Councillors, liaising with CRL as part of their function on council expenditure, was keeping the ratepayers best interest at heart?

“There’s no accountability and there are far too many operations in Auckland running their own games for their own ends, and not worried about the costs to ratepayers. AT (Auckland Transport) will not even talk to its sister CCO Ports of Auckland.”

Tamihere said this is why he released early in the campaign his five foundation platforms (www.jtformayor) that deal with, culture, conduct and accountability of the council.


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