Hulse has limited planning experience. I don’t believe she has been a planning commissioner. Her lack of understanding of the requirements of the Resource Management Act (RMA) should have ruled her out of any major involvement in the Unitary Plan. It was clear from her progress reports to elected representatives, which consisted entirely of platitudes, that she had little understanding of the issues. She has been promoted way above her competence level. She has been putty in the hands of planning bureaucrats.
Brown gave Hulse the deputy job as part of an unholy alliance between the South and West. The job should have gone to Mike Lee, as Chairman of the Auckland Regional Council. Lee had stood aside to let Brown have the mayoralty but would have been too much of a threat to Brown as his deputy so he was fobbed off with a seat on the Board of Auckland Transport. Next best choice would have been Penny Webster. Webster had been a former Mayor of Rodney as well as an MP. She was obviously way too bright for Brown. Brown needed someone who wouldn’t show him up too much. The obviously choice was the provincial Hulse. Bad mistake.
Hulse is a westie through and through. She was an early member of the Green party before embarking on a political career, eventually becoming Deputy Mayor of Waitakere City Council. Being deputy mayor of a provincial outpost of Auckland in no way qualified Hulse for becoming Len Brown’s second in command in the newly amalgamated Auckland Council. She was, and is, firmly at the community board level from which she has failed to evolve.
She continues to be provincial in outlook. She would have been better suited as Chair of the Arts and Culture Committee where she might have shone.
Hulse might think that acting the part of a of a modern, well dressed, female politician with her expensive designer suits and her streaked sharp, hair cut, will fool sophisticated Aucklanders. She is wrong. She cannot hide her wild west past.
Her lack of leadership skills and passive aggressive manner come across as though she were a hectoring school-ma’am. She has been accused on social media of passing information to her Green friends on Generation Zero and Transportblog before briefing Councillors. Another example of lack of awareness of due process.
Her mishandling of the PAUP process has made Auckland a laughing stock throughout local government in New Zealand. Hulse must go - sooner rather than later.