However, instead of presenting to an open Council committee, the meeting turned out to be a closed workshop. This allowed the Chairman, Councillor Ross Clow, to exclude the public and press. His first act as Chair was to declare the meeting ‘Confidential’. His second act was to forbid the taking of photographs.
This chilly reception only served to make Clow and Council look like they had something to hide.
Following the meeting the ARA issued the following media release.
RATEPAYERS TELL COUNCILLORS TO STICK TO PLEDGES - SPEND MORE IN INFRASTRUCTURE
Submitting to Auckland Councillors yesterday, the Auckland Ratepayers’ Alliance, on behalf of its 16,000 members, said that those who vote for Phil Goff’s proposed Accommodation Targeted Rate would be in breach of their commitments to keep rate hikes below 2% if any additional increases are approved as part of this year’s Budget.
Keeping their word
Spokesperson, Jo Holmes, who presented to the Councillor’s workshop alongside Jordan Williams, says, “The proposed Accommodation Rate alone is equivalent to an average 1.9% rate hike. That means that for those Councillors who signed pledges to keep total rate hikes below 2%, they will need to vote for no additional increases in rates to keep their word to those who elected them last year.”
Tackling wasteful spending and infrastructure deficit
“On behalf of ratepayers, we commissioned independent economic analysis which shows the Council’s revenue problem is actually to do with excessive spending. Despite total revenue growing many times the level of inflation, the total amount spent on transport infrastructure is actually decreasing.”
“Ratepayers need to be able to trust Auckland Council to tackle wasteful spending, before they are forced to fork out more in higher, or new rates and charges. After all, tackling waste was the main platform the new mayor and council was elected on last year. It is time they delivered.”
Who will be first to break the Ratepayers Pledge they signed when they wanted to get elected? .