INDEPENDENT NEWS

Complete Local Projects Instead of Increasing Taxes

Published: Tue 30 Apr 2013 08:36 AM
Media Statement
Complete Local Projects Instead of Increasing Taxes
“Finish what you start before taxing the pips out of Auckland motorists and property owners.”
That is the message from Manurewa’s civic leaders following the public discussion publication of the transport funding group set up by Mayor Len Brown to provide funding options for Auckland Council.
Manurewa Local Board chairperson Angela Dalton described the Mayor’s Consensus Building Group as a useless exercise, which should not be used as a public relations tool to soften Aucklanders up to pay a multi-billion dollar price-tag for unfunded election promises.
“Having got to the end of the Auckland Plan, the mayor continued to overpromise to Aucklanders.  More than $10 billion worth of transport promises have gone unfunded, and few if any of the unfunded projects would materially assist residents and commuters in the south of the Auckland region.
“So it is in the extreme of unbelievable to think financially stretched commuters are going to be able to afford regional fuel taxes, and road pricing in order to fund schemes like the City Rail Loop.  My constituents would settle for improvements to the Takanini Interchange, certainty around the Mill Road corridor, and other projects that cost far less than $10 billion,” Angela Dalton said.
Fellow board member Hon George Hawkins said the Consensus Building Group needed to be seen for what it was and what its recommendations would cost.
“It’s like the Council has filled its trolley for groceries at the supermarket and arrived at the check-out knowing it has no means to pay for the purchases.  Instead of living within its means the Council is coming up with excuses and stalling for time.
“Why should motorists and homeowners from Manurewa and Papakura be forced to pay around $400 million a year extra in rates and indirect taxes when they will not benefit from the consequential increase in infrastructure?  No matter what way the Mayor spins it he is trying to seduce from local residents and business people more and more taxes in order to fund extravagant election promises,” George Hawkins said.
ENDS

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