EXCLUSIVE: Letter to Phil Goff from Mike Lee

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12 COMMENTS

  1. As a ratepayer who has something like 38% of my rates forced off me for transport I don’t know why Phil Goff would dream of taking off 2 elected council representatives.

    Mike Lee won his council seat fair and square against a backdrop of amateur and corporate lobbyists against him, one of whom then writes to AT to get on the board themselves!

    Mike Lee should be kept on the board. Especially when the other representatives seem to be government cronies like Paula Rebstock who have zero transport knowledge.

    It’s a bad look for Labour that the first thing Phil Goff does is to try to remove democratically elected officials who are very popular and experienced like Mike Lee.

    What does that say about Labour? If we have a look at what happened to Roger Douglas when he formed ACT, vs Goff who stayed with Labour to keep himself in power. Goff would not have got the votes for mayor if he was not linked to Labour. Now he looks like Goff is sabotaging Labour yet again.

    • Technically, Goff stood as an independent and didn’t represent Labour. Mike Lee is still a Councillor and has not been removed from the council. Goff has sure ruffled alot of feathers.

      Phil Goff said, as to his reasons:

      “The call by Goff to leave councillors off the board has upset many councillors and supporters following the appointment of councillors Mike Lee and Chris Fletcher for the past six years.

      Last night, Goff sent councillors a letter in which he said he had yet to see evidence that the appointment of councillors to the board has enabled the council to better hold it to account.”

      “Some councillors and some in AT have been gunning for this for the last 18 months-Sandra Coney”

      “He said he had been influenced by a report by the Office of the Auditor-General saying setting clear expectations of council-controlled organisations (CCOs) should do away with the need for councillor directors.”

      “Goff also said he had significantly increased the scrutiny of CCOs through the new committee structure and received feedback from councillors that the appointments did not improve the flow of information from Auckland Transport to the council.”

      “There was also concern about the inequity created by these appointments given that appointees earn more than $50,000 in directors’ fees a year while other elected representatives who carry out extra duties receive no additional payment,” the letter said.”

      “Labour’s spokesman of Auckland issues, Phil Twyford, said he had an open mind on the issue.

      “I believe Mayor Phil needs to exercise much tougher accountability over the CCOs which have behaved like independent fiefdoms undermining the integration that was supposed to be one of the great benefits of the Super City. I think this is what he plans to do,” Twyford said.

      When Goff was Leader of the Opposition at the time the Super City was being set up in 2010, he described the CCOs as a “clique of cronies” who would be more important than elected councillors.

      “The Government has been too quick to centralise power in the hands of a few, instead of all of Auckland,” Goff said in a 2010 speech on ‘The Future of Auckland’.”

      http://m.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11738249

      • So says another labour party hack. Ironic that you demand unity on the left, whilst stabbing democracy in the back. No wonder there is a section of the left who think that the labour party are the problem..

        • Excuse me? That’s a bit melodramatic isn’t it? How is this exclusively Labour’s fault? Or the fault of anyone of the left?

          Posted the other side of the argument, stating the reasons that’s all. People did say they wanted to know why. Maybe myopic people, that think they know it all, and think their opinion is the only one that counts, is the problem.

  2. I’d be stunned if the real-estate photographer, Patrick Reynolds, manages to weasel his way onto the AT board with little more than a letter of request and a few musings on an internet forum to his name.

  3. Goff is no more left-wing than Key. The right didn’t lose the mayoral race, Goff won. Pretty soon only half the city will be ratepayers. Auckland is going to tear itself apart in the not too distant future. No one, man, woman, alien or talking parrot can “fix” Auckland until the central government stop bringing in more than 800 people a week.

  4. Uurgh, am I really going to have to visit the Spinoff to see how this sits with their views on record regarding Mike Lee? How they feeling about it now? Bad opening move from Goff.

    • So in the end I did – nothing on this from them. But they are still attacking Mike Lee over the unitary plan. If only Bill Ralston had beaten Mike Lee – because the unitary plan means Hayden Donnell and Duncan Grieve would be able to buy town houses in Ponsonby instead of having to contemplate home ownership in the outer suburbs like ordinary plebs! Don’t make them have to do it Mike – back the unitary plan and spare the Spinoff staff writers from the indignity of living like ordinary people!

  5. As a ratepayer, I too will write to the mayor to show my disapproval of Elected councillors being removed off the AT board. It’s the least all Aucklanders can do.

  6. The choice of the colour blue on his local body election billboards was a signal, that Goff wanted to “unleash” himself from his historic ties to Labour and “the left” (within which he was on the right, even right of centre in some matters).

    So he got voted in now, and he acts accordingly, “unleashed” from any past obligations and accountability for what he may have said and done once upon a time.

    Mr Goff is now the boss at the table, although he needs other Councillors to work with, and to support him. His choice of a National Party member as Deputy Mayor is another signal, that Mr Goff does want to steer a different course, different also to Len Brown.

    Mike Lee raises his concerns here, which is appropriate, I presume, but I doubt that Phil Goff will listen all that much. He will have “consulted” with many, that is firstly those who have the money and power and influence already, and as he wants to build bridges to Central Government, we can expect more of this kind of action from him.

    Prepare for more PPPs (public private partnerships), prepare for less effective transparency and accountability when it comes to CCOs, prepare for higher rates increases than were promised, prepare for bonds that will be another form of debt, burdened upon Aucklanders for future years, perhaps future generations to pay off.

    With the way things are, we will only get some of what Phil promised as candidate, at a price, as without the still mostly petrol headed population of Auckland nothing much will go for more than the next three years, as they will get grumpy when higher parking fees, more restrictions and perhaps user charges for road use will be brought in.

    After all, most power is still wielded in Wellington, let us see how far Phil will get, he will be the boy called to polish John Key’s shoes. Phil did not do well in the pre election debates against Key in 2011, he will be the one with less clout when it comes to the powerplay over what goes and does not go in Auckland.

    Watch this show, which has just started.

    To get real change, people need to wake up in larger numbers, and vote in a left of centre government in Wellington late next year.

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