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More Transparency Needed On InterCity Bailout

The New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union says Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford needs to front up about how much public money is being used to bail out struggling bus company InterCity.

Union spokesperson Louis Houlbrooke says: “InterCity has received taxpayer money from the $20m Essential Transport Connectivity package, but the Minister is citing commercial sensitivity, refusing to reveal how much. This is just not good enough from a newly promoted senior Minister in the self-declared most open and transparent Government the country has ever seen.”

"Perhaps Phil Twyford doesn't realise, but with the closure of Manabus and Nakedbus, InterCity no longer has a direct competitor, so he needn't worry about commercial sensitivity."

“It is taxpayer money and taxpayers deserve to know how much is being invested in InterCity on their behalf, and how that money will be used. The Minister providing that information to the public would be open and transparent.”

“On a side note, the Taxpayers’ Union is not at all surprised that services in Northland have been singled out for support. Shane Jones seems to have a way of securing Government funding to help his election chances there. New Zealand First’s future will likely be reliant on him winning the seat. Money from the Provincial Growth Slush Fund has been poured into Northland, now there is more funding for a private bus service to the electorate. We're concerned the Government is more concerned about electoral politics than quality of spending.”

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