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Monday, August 13, 2012

Len says no to free money

Mayor Len Brown lets rip another reeking brain fart:

NZ Herald:[Auckland council's submission] rejected Mr Flavell's proposal to put funding distribution in the hands of local body politicians.Mayor Brown said: "I wouldn't want that responsibility. I would have every man and his dog banging at the door - and you would always be open to accusations of pork-barrelling."

Len says no to millions in free money because, ah...  people might want to use it? And people might criticise the Council for using it? That's just idiotic on so many levels. The idea that the Council doesn't want any part in the distribution of funds is pathetic considering all the funding they apply for from central government for all sorts of things. The infrustructure to take and assess applications for funding by local community groups is already there.

Auckland Council release:
The Bill also proposes to require councils to set up and administer distribution committees that would allocate the net proceeds from these venues, based on the principles of fairness and transparency, and that 80 per cent of those proceeds be returned to the venue’s local community.
“While we support the intention, we don’t believe council should be involved in the business of making the decisions on funding allocations. We have proposed an alternative mechanism to achieve the desire for more transparency and fairness,” says Cr Wood.
The council suggests:
  • leaving trusts responsible for administration and distributing proceeds from Class 4 gambling machines, and that they continue to pay out of gross proceeds
  • require the trusts to provide evidence of how they would reduce problem gambling, minimise operating costs and maximise returns to the community, in order to obtain a consent from council to operate
  • require trusts to distribute proceeds within the council’s area in accordance with rules set out in that council’s gambling venue policy. This criteria would also control where the funds go, for what purpose and membership of distribution committees.
The dodgy trusts and the rule that the publican chooses them are the fatal flaws. Continuing the conflict of interest with added layers of regulation is no solution to the problem.

The (il)logic of it is stark. It begs the immediate question: if Council can't be arsed to recieve, and don't think they are competent enough to disburse, funds out to community groups then why don't they terminate the awful burden they already have of doing that? No more funding, no more applications to process - just ban it and let Council get on with whatever indirect support they do. Given his performance it's doubtful Len would be able to comprehend the issue let alone have an answer to it.
He's a damn fool. Why would people vote for this clown again? If Len "wouldn't want that responsibility" then he doesn't deserve the responsibility of the mayoralty either.  He is a total disappointment. If he's going to have his opinions made by Council staff then there's no point having him there.

The Mayor that said no to free money! I just can't get over that. There's just no stopping him adding to his political epitaph.

Because the Council is so busy with stuff the last thing they want is some free money to dish out to worthy groups to do good in the community... rather just continue with tinkering with the rorting system and it will be rainbows and pavlova. Makes sense to Len.

The Auckland left need to get their replacement nominee for mayor sorted now.


At 13/8/12 1:27 pm, Blogger Steve Withers said...

Len Brown is good on the issues that really matter (like public transport and urban sprawl) in Auckland. I'll have no problems voting for him again. Pokey machines should be banned anyway. They are a leech on the poor. I can understand where Brown is coming from. He has already seen how people's reputations can be tainted by association with gambling. He doesn't want to be seduced by this dirty money. I'll support that.

At 13/8/12 7:40 pm, Blogger Nitrium said...

Maybe he can't figure out an easy way to siphon it off to himself and his cronies, and so it is of little use to him.

At 15/8/12 5:24 pm, Blogger David Hay said...

Read the submission before you shoot off at the mouth: it was written by a working party of councillors and local board members. Most local boards also rejected the funding role. It's all there in the submission, which is available on the parliament website.

Len was saying what the council has unanimously agreed on, after deliberating on the matter at length.

At 15/8/12 5:28 pm, Blogger David Hay said...

Try reading the submission before you shoot off at the mouth, mate. Len was speaking for the whole council.

The council submission was prepared by a working party of councillors and local board members. Most local boards considered the matter and passed resolutions; nearly all agreed to reject the proposed funding role, for a variety of reasons.

It's all there in the submission, if you'd bothered to read it.


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