Councillor Gail 'Sandcastle' Sheriff has not been entirely pushed off the gravy train she has been happily riding for the last several years.

Despite the fact she has resigned as a Christchurch City councillor and despite the fact that the local body elections are less than two months away, Sideshow Bob's loyal follower has again been appointed to the board of Orion Electricity - for three years.

Although its claimed that such appointments are not 'permanent' Sheriff has already served on the board for the past five years.

This appointment comes at a time when it has been revealed that Sheriff had the highest absenteeism rate among elected officials at council meetings in the past year. She missed six of 26 meetings between July 9, 2009, and June 24 this year.

Sheriff will pick up $40,000 a year for work she said in 2008 took no more than '10-15 hours a month'.

Mayoral candidate Jim Anderton has rightfully slammed the appointment. He has told The Press : "Within five weeks of the first vote being cast, the council has made an appointment that effectively binds the next council for the entirety of its three-year term,"

The man responsible for making this irresponsible decision was Bob Lineham, the CEO of Christchurch City Holdings. He holds political views that are not altogether dissimilar from Sheriff's.

Lineham has had a long career within the council bureaucracy and he has been one of the central council ideologues who think Christchurch should be run as a business on behalf of business interests.

In 2006, as CEO of Christchurch City Holdings, he supported selling the Lyttelton Port Company to a Hong kong - based multinational, a sale that was subsequently called off in the face of widespread public opposition.


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