The Christchurch City Council's 'earthquake levy' is nothing more than a bailout for Vbase, the Council-owned operator of the AMI Stadium. Meanwhile, Sideshow Bob and his chums have allowed CEO Tony Marryatt to spend up large on 'consultants'. The good people of Christchurch are paying for that as well.
The good people of Christchurch, already financially impoverished by two devastating earthquakes, have been dealt a further blow by Sideshow Bob and his Council chums.
The Christchurch City Council has approved a 5.34 per cent rates rise. On top of that an 'earthquake levy' of 1.76 percent has been imposed.
The propaganda says that this will repay the expected $73.8 million deficit 'caused by earthquakes', but the levy is solely to pay the debts of the Council-owned Vbase, the operator of the AMI Stadium. Vbase's debt has been reported to be approximately $74 million.
The 7.1 percent overall increase means that the Christchurch City Council has also allowed CEO Tony Marryatt to spend nearly $3 million on 'consultants' to work on the Christchurch City Council plan.
Marryatt appointed the consultants without the approval of the Council.
He doesn't appear to have taken heed of advice from the Ministry of Economic Development that it 'seek some level of competition and achieve value for money.'
Impact Project Management has the biggest contract, being paid $878,936. It appears that Marryatt unilaterally appointed Project Management. Due process has simply been ignored.
Hagley-Ferrymead councillor Yani Johanson has commented that he is 'increasingly concerned' about the cost of the central-city planning process.
Councillors should have been given an opportunity to decide the scope and budget of the project, Johanson said this week.
'There's no reason why it couldn't have been approved by us. We can arrange special meetings within a day's notice.'
Despite the enormous financial difficulties facing Christchurch and its people, its worth noting that Sideshow Bob and his chums didn't think it necessary to do their bit for Christchurch by taking a cut to their already inflated salaries.
We all have to make sacrifices apparently - but not Sideshow Bob and his Council chums. This is in despite of the fact that much of the work of the Christchurch City Council has been taken over by the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (CERA).