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Auckland Council Laughing all the way to the Bank!

28 January 2014

Auckland Council Laughing all the way to the Bank!

The Waiheke Local Board plans to hand over $1.4 million of ratepayer’s money to the Auckland Council to try and entice them to give Waiheke Islanda swimming pool.

“The Auckland Council must be laughing all the way to the bank,” says Internet Blogger and Ex-Deputy Chairperson of the Waiheke Local Board, Jo Holmes.

The plan by the Waiheke Local Board is outlined in the Draft Waiheke Local Board Plan currently out for submissions.

“This is a move of breathtaking ineptitude and naivety. There are no guarantees this sweetener will actually work and the Waiheke Local Board have not set any conditions around this massive payment to Auckland Council; making it basically an unconditional koha with no right of retrieval,” says Holmes.

This money was successfully won by the previous Waiheke Local Board and ear-tagged for an upgrade of the Onetangi Sports Park pavilion ($742k), community facility upgrades including refurbishing the old library space ($420k) and recreational boat ramps ($268k).

“To give this money back to the Auckland Council in the hope they will fast-track a community swimming pool for Waiheke Island is incredibly naive.

“Waiheke Island is placed at the bottom of the Auckland Council’s aquatic facilities priorities, so it is highly unlikely this koha will have any influence over Auckland Council. Even more seriously, the bigger message this will send Auckland Council is that ‘Waiheke doesn’t need all this money. Take it back.’ With the Mayor already under pressure to reduce ballooning debt he will rub his hands at the prospect of a windfall from Waiheke ratepayers,” says Holmes.

Jo Holmes, through her blog site www.joholmes.com , is calling for people to oppose the plan.

Her blog goes on to say: “The Waiheke Local Board is now run by elected members with Green Party aspirations and no governing body experience. A word of caution; every rate payer in New Zealand needs to take note of what a ‘Green’ takeover of local rates could mean for their community. The lack of basic business sense and high level of naivety is astounding”.


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