Brown is asking Council to consider selling the Council’s stake in Auckland International Airport and Ports of Auckland to raise even more cash.
These income earning assets have produced $391 million dividend income for Council. Imagine the rates hikes that will be needed when that dividend income isn’t there any more, and the proceeds have been spent on the insatiable appetite for cash that is the City Rail Link with inevitable cost blow outs and ongoing operating subsidies.
The Super City has earned $391 million from shares in Auckland Airport and Ports of Auckland, which could be sold by the cash-strapped council.
The council’s finance committee yesterday voted 16-3 for a review of alternative financing sources, including the possible sale of a $1.4 billion stake in Auckland Airport and the $1.1 billion ports company.
Councillors are taking a wait-and-see approach to a push by senior officers to consider asset sales.
Any sell-down of these assets will reduce future revenue and could lead to higher rates to plug the gap.
Selling the family silver might help pay for his toys in the short term but in the long term using the money to invest in assets that will be a constant drain of the ratepayer’s purse for generations to come makes no sense at all.