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Super City Mayor - Millionaires Only Need Apply

Media Release
City Vision-Labour Councillors - Auckland City Council
For Immediate Release
Thursday 3 December 2009

VACANCY: Auckland Super City Mayor - Millionaires Only Need Apply

Today Local Government Minister Rodney Hide announced government policy on the third Auckland Supercity Bill which included provision for a huge increase in spending limits for mayoral candidates and added a number of Council Controlled Organisations (CCOs) to run the Supercity’s core assets and services by appointees separate from elected members.

Councillor Richard Northey said, “National/ACT’s Cabinet have truly gerrymandered the election of the Auckland Supercity Mayor by bringing in a law that allows Supercity mayoral candidates to spend a whopping $580,000 in the last three months of their campaign. This is outrageous! It is an increase of over half a million dollars from the current law which only allows $70,000 to be spent on a mayoral race and has clearly been constructed to make absolutely sure that John Banks or another of National/ACT’s right wing millionaire mates wins the mayoralty of the new Supercity.”

Councillor Casey said, “The National/ACT government are proposing to take even more vital local government functions out of democratic and locally accountable control by setting up more of the independent CCOs that they hope will be run by their privatising business mates. These now include organisations set up especially to run economic development, public events, tourism, property development, regional facilities and transport.”

Councillor Fryer said, “Today National and ACT have made it clear that their third Auckland Supercity bill will not provide any more or clearer powers to the 19 local boards they are establishing which is not only negligent and extremely disappointing, it provides no guidance to people thinking of standing for local board positions.”

Councillor Leila Boyle said, “The announcement by Rodney Hide today means that the only certain way local boards can raise funds for their local services or facilities is to impose a special additional targeted rate on local residents and businesses. This could work well for Kohimarama but it would prove totally impracticable in Glen Innes, Ranui or Otara. It means that Otahuhu and Avondale, which have been identified as gaps in regional studies on swimming pool provision, will have to rate their low valued and struggling communities to provide for amenities that suburbs like Newmarket and Parnell already have. Thanks for nothing, Rodney Hide and John Key!”

Councillor Graeme Easte “Rodney Hide’s prescription for the new Supercity proposes antidemocratic and elitist control of many crucial local government assets and services. What has Auckland done to deserve a lower level of democracy than the rest of New Zealand?”

ENDS

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