Stop Wastage & Overspending

As well as fighting rate increases Greg will continue to push for greater financial accountability and transparency as well as stopping the wastage and overspending.

It should start by immediately getting the annual $771 million wage bill under control which has blown out every year. Last year it blew out by $32 million and the year before by $63 million. This is overspending Council cannot afford!

The extra $32 million spent on wages means we missed out on $96 million of new infrastructure. ($1 cash can be leveraged by a factor of 3x times through Council’s Treasury to pay for infrastructure). The $63 million wages blow out meant we missed out on a further $190 million of new infrastructure the year before.

Councillors must focus Council on living within its own financial means.

Financial mismanagement by our elected officials is out of control. Council needs to stop wasting money rather than putting its hands deeper into your pockets.

We cannot afford to continue to have Councillors who abdicate the monitoring of the operational costs to the CEO alone. They must realize this is a governance responsibility. In fact, to succeed Councillors must lift their game and excel in this discipline of knowing precisely where and how rates are being spent across the Council and the other business units Council controls.

Get Council Back to Core Business

If Auckland is really about equality across the Region, then let’s have our roads, footpaths, walkways and public transport comparable with the rest of Auckland.

We need to get Council back to core business and the “need to haves”, like dealing with Warkworth’s and Kumeu’s traffic congestion; rather than the “nice to haves”, like pink cycle-ways or white-water rafting parks.

We must have investment in our roads, transport choices and key water and sewerage infrastructure.

Not only do we need to catch up we need to be ready for the growth that is coming.

Auckland’s population is going to grow by almost 1 million people in the next 30 years.  Rodney’s population will grow by 115,000 people, which is almost 3/4 the size of Hamilton.

That means Rodney will need another 47,000 new houses and 20,000 new jobs will be needed. We need the planning of our core services done in advance so our infrastructure is built in time for this rapid population growth.

Local Rates to Be Spent Locally

People are frustrated with decisions being made centrally by a disconnected “one-size- fits- all” mentality. We need our rates spent on our infrastructure not on Auckland CBD projects that provide little or no benefit for Rodney ratepayers. Council needs to start giving Rodney its fair share of Council’s spending. Greg is fighting hard for this.

With our area paying over $70 million in rates a year, Greg is working closely with the Rodney Local Board and jointly push for a fairer share of Council’s spending and he will always promote local projects.

Reduce Regulations

Unnecessary Council regulations and rules need to be removed. The time delays and cost to do business with Council is out of control.

License costs, user charges, compliance costs and consent costs have all skyrocketed. Many are being passed onto housing prices. These costs need to be reduced to sensible levels in order for new jobs and housing to be created. Any shortfall in revenue should be found from internal Council savings.

New policy removing red tape and allowing local contractors, community volunteers and community groups to deliver community projects is essential.

Fix The Traffic Congestion

Traffic congestion in Warkworth and Kumeu is getting worse by the day. At peak times there is already ‘grid lock’. Greg is regularly hounding the Government who owns the State Highways to get it fixed, and is a strong supporter of the local action groups who want this to happen!

Much more money needs to be spent on improving and maintaining rural roads as well throughout Rodney. The City Rail Link and other huge transport projects has meant Rodney is not getting its fair share of the cake. Greg is striving to ensure that we do and that Rodney receives higher priority in the regional strategies of Auckland Transport.

This includes road sealing and maintenance, significantly improved bus services throughout Rodney, rail services to Huapai, and Park’n’Rides for Kumeu and Warkworth and “greenway” paths to better connect our townships.

Working proactively with the Government Greg is getting results by pushing for infrastructure such as new roundabouts at both the Muriwai and the Riverhead Highway intersections with SH16, safety improvements along both SH1 and SH16, agreeing and supporting improvements at the Hill Street intersection, coaxing along the final sign off on the Matakana Link Road and is supporting the community wanting a train service through to Huapai.