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Auckland Council Elections

Written By: - Date published: 8:43 pm, August 16th, 2013 - 28 comments
Categories: auckland supercity, C&R, local body elections, local government, Politics - Tags:

Super City Rodney Hide

I thought I would do some posts about the Auckland super city elections.  This is the first of five intended posts and will deal with the Mayoral candidates.  The other four will deal with the Councillor elections on the North Shore, out west, in Auckland Istmus and in Manukau.  These elections are potentially the most important as a majority on Council can frustrate the most progressive of Mayor’s policy platforms.

Nominations are closed and the candidates have been announced.

There are 17 candidates for Mayor.  Len Brown should be safe.  He has raised some concern amongst the left but my own view is that overall he has done well and deserves support.  John Palino is probably going to be a distant second although John Minto’s principled campaign should deservedly attract some attention and a second place for him would be a tremendous result.  His proposal for free public transport ought to attract proper debate and consideration and I wish him well.

The other candidates should not trouble the statisticians.  Penny Bright will be there and her energy and commitment should be respected.  Uesifili Unasa may sap support for Len amongst Pacifica but to be frank I am still struggling to work out what his beef with Len is.

The rest will generally not be known.  There is a member of the Communist League and a Christian who is against abortion.  David Willmot is apparently roads first.  It would help if his website actually contained something and his campaign video from last time needs to be seen to be believed.

Reuben Shadbolt’s qualification to be Mayor is apparently that he is Tim Shadbolt’s son.  Our elected representatives should have greater qualifications than this.  Reuben is also seeking a seat on the Whau local board.  It may be that he thinks that the publicity of a Mayoral campaign will get him elected onto the local board.

Other candidates include Stephen Berry, a libertarian, who is standing for the affordable party.  The party’s website at the time of writing says that they are still seeking candidates.  Someone should tell them that nominations have closed.

I am afraid that I do not know any of the other candidates.

So it looks like the result is a forgone conclusion.  This could be bad in that the elections are important and a predictable Mayoral contest will suppress voter turnout.

The really interesting aspect is that there is no Community and Resident candidate.  It appears that C&R are in some difficulty.  In a city where the vast majority of Parliamentary seats are held by National you have to wonder why they do not have a Mayoral candidate.

28 comments on “Auckland Council Elections”

  1. jaymam 1

    I’ve not seen any left-wing candidates for Orakei. So are we just leaving it to C&R, with no-one else to counter their views?

    P.S. is everyone going into the moderation queue or is it just me?

    [Not sure what happened there jayman but I agree your comment should have gone straight through. But the last time the left nearly won in Orakei was in 1987 and those were strange times … – MS]

    • Michael Wood 1.1

      Dorthe Siggard is a good progressive candidate in Orakei.

      • jaymam 1.1.1

        It appears that some officious bastard (possibly from the Council) has decided to knock down the sole left-wing billboard in my area, probably under the wrong impression that the billboard is in the wrong place. In fact the area for billboards has been wrongly described, so all the other billboards are in the wrong place as well.
        Considering that all the C&R billboards everywhere didn’t comply for the font size and so now the font size rule has been rescinded after their billboards were put up, that’s a bloody cheek, and just a continuation of the right-wing bias of Auckland Council.
        I shall be photographing anyone who knocks down the billboard again, if I see it happening. I have warned the Council that they are wrong and should not be knocking down billboards.

  2. tc 2

    I reckon C&R figure there is more to be made from niggling away like they have been with banksy junior brewer positioning himself to go up next time unless he gets a comfy mp gig like goldsmith did.

    • mickysavage 2.1

      Yep TC. I must acknowledge that C&R realise that the Mayoral position is important but Council still decides most things. So a solid majority of right wing Councillors could still do a lot of damage.

      I get the impression that the Government’s grudging support for the inner city loop was the kiss of death for them. They had been so opposed to it on the basis that it could not be justified then the Government accepted that the justification was actually really strong, too strong to ignore …

    • tc 2.2

      I meant to edit this in but didnt get an option….
      C&R have no need to be in mayoral robes when rortney and the hollowmen effectively handed akl over with supershity structure, job done so let len play around the nats do as the nats wish as nick smith has demonstrated.

      • mickysavage 2.2.1

        Yep. That is why I used the graphic for this post. Democracy may be kicking into action but the Hide designed super city is still dominating …

        • Colonial Viper 2.2.1.1

          You gotta love the Righties for institutionalising their Tory systems in place.

          A few lessons for the Left to learn there, methinks.

          • Tiger Mountain 2.2.1.1.1

            Yes Mark Ford leaves a trail of sackings and disrupted lives in his wake one way or another where ever he goes. And Rodneys virtually impenetrable CCOs have been the sting in the tail from the super city.

  3. Pete 3

    Should be an interesting contest down here in Dunedin this year. We use STV as our voting system for the council and the Greens are fielding a candidate, Aaron Hawkins, for mayor. His is the only electoral advertising I’ve seen so far, and his party has a strong activist base. I think they could field a lot more campaigners than Dave Cull, the current mayor. Given that Alliance-affliated Sukhi Turner won three terms, standing down in 2004, we might see a return to the left.

    Also of note, Pete George is running for council too (Edit and mayor as well).

    • mickysavage 3.1

      I agree that contests throughout the country are important. Maybe we could persuade r0b or someone else to post on the Dunedin contests.

      Wow and Pete is running for Mayor? If he could persuade Dunne to oppose the GCSB at its third reading he could have a chance …

  4. Craig Glen viper 4

    ” Uesifili Unasa may sap support for Len amongst Pacifica but to be frank I am still struggling to work out what his beef with Len is.”

    Maybe the Minister actually likes workers and thinks they deserve a decent wage MS, or maybe he can’t stand sellouts. Len does not deserve your support in my view Lens proved he is a Labour Party member for expediency only he is as bad as a scab as far as Im concerned, and Im looking forward to telling him to.

    • Murray Olsen 4.1

      Agreed. I can’t see how Len Brown can be considered remotely left wing after the way he sold out the wharfies. His stand on housing is less than inspirational as well. The South Aucklanders I know feel totally used, as if they were just his stepping stone on the way to greater things.

      I’d love to see John Minto get in. Local body elections can be full of surprises. Naturally he wouldn’t have much support inside council, but John knows how to work in that sort of situation without selling out.

  5. millsy 5

    Some questions that you all should be asking your candidates:

    1) What services would you like to see cut?
    2) What is your view on the outsourcing of council activities?
    3) What is your view on the sale of council assets?
    4) What you you see as ‘core council’ activities
    5) Are you a member of any political party?

    On the topic of outsourcing, it is interesting that there are a lot of smaller councils that have still kept their road maintainance and civil engineering services in-house, by the way of council owned contruction companies.

    Examples are Waitomo District Council, which owns Inframax, and the Tararua District Council and Central Hawkes Bay District Council which jointly own Infracon.

  6. Tanz 6

    Hide and the superciry. Auckland is suffering for that,, is it not.

  7. tc 7

    One issue that will hurt any new mayor is the mess the systems and processes of the merged former councils are still in.
    Wth makay as CEO and fords IT hatchett man from watercare installed the lid and spin on that will not go where it belongs being the transition authority who bullied, fudged, ignored solid advice then ran out of dosh and walked away leaving it supershitys issue.

  8. Jenny 8

    John Palino is probably going to be a distant second although John Minto’s principled campaign should deservedly attract some attention and a second place for him would be a tremendous result. His proposal for free public transport ought to attract proper debate and consideration and I wish him well.

    MICKYSAVAGE

    If the struggle for second is really between John Minto and John Palino. Personally I can’t understand why anyone would vote for Palino. Palino’s campaign is very well funded. Despite that, from what I can tell apart from supplying lots of vague waffle, where there is any detail, it is not much different to that being promoted by the incumbent, Len Brown.
    Supporters of those policies would be much better voting Len Brown for Mayor.

    Apart from signalling more freedom for developers. Polino puts up no detailed policy under the headings of transport and housing, the two big issues in this campaign. Surely, policy should be the first thing a candidate should be standing for. That they have policies and issues they want to promote different to the incumbent and that is why they are standing.

    Minto has lots of well thought out and costed policy and programs; from ending traffic congestion, to rental housing shortages, corporate feather bedding by council corporate managers over a living wage for council employees, and industrial relations. (Brown’s weakpoint)

    Minto’s downfall as compared to Palino is, Minto has no money behind his campaign.

    Palino has lots of money but no distinct policy.

    So really second place will be a contest between, on one hand, a candidate sincerely promoting public policy he thinks will be for the benefit of Aucklanders, and on the other, a candidate with the money to buy an election.

    If money wins. This will be a sad day for our democracy.

  9. A bit of history………….

    Don’t forget Greg, that when I stood for the Water Pressure Group, in the Avondale/Mt Roskill by-election, following the death of Phil Raffills, we got nearly 6,500 votes?

    Came second – about 700 votes behind Noelene Raffills.

    City Vision polled about 2,500 votes.

    I stood, because Water Pressure Group members were sick of the treachery of some City Vision Councillors, who had signed pledges opposing Metrowater, but then had ended up supporting Metrowater……

    Remember this?

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/AK0111/S00029/local-body-election-challenge-decision-due-wed.htm
    ___________________________________________________________________________

    Why I’m standing for Mayor of Auckland Council:

    I’m a proven and experienced ‘anti-corruption’ and ‘anti-privatisation Public Watchdog’.

    I will expose and stop corrupt corporate control.

    My track record stands for an open, transparent and democratically-accountable Auckland.

    I will open the books.

    Who really runs Auckland?

    Try googling http://www.committeeforauckand.co.nz/membership

    How?

    Through ‘Council Controlled Organisations’ (CCOs), where unelected businesspeople run the Auckland region like a business, by business, for business.

    It’s time to cut out the consultants and private contractors.

    Public monies should benefit the public majority.

    Rates, housing, transport and water services must be ‘cost-effective’ and affordable.

    We need a nationally-coordinated population, migration and employment strategy.

    ‘Market-led’ Auckland growth, pushing rezoning and housing intensification, is decimating communities against their wishes.

    Who benefits?

    Property developers, speculators and overseas investors.

    Following the ‘precautionary principle’ and ‘wellness’ model, will achieve a genuinely ‘clean, green’ New Zealand.

    We the people must take back our Auckland region from corporate control!
    ………………..
    ___________________________________________________________________________

    PS: If I thought any of the other Mayoral candidates could do a better job, I’d walk away now.

    I don’t – so I’m not.

    Kind regards,

    ‘Her Warship’ :)

  10. Did any of the other Mayoral candidates oppose the $UPERCITY from Day One?

    http://www.stopthesupercity.org.nz/

    It’s not complicated.

    The mechanism for the corporate takeover of the Auckland region has been through CCOs.

    ‘Council Controlled Organisations’ (CCOs), which are actually Corporate Controlled Organisations.

    CCOs must go.

    Council services must come back ‘in-house’, under the ‘public service’ model, and be directly under the control of elected representatives.

    Mayoral candidates who are not opposed to CCOs – just don’t get it.

    Mayoral candidates who have no or little local government background or experience, arguably cannot be expected to have a good grasp of the real underpinning issues, the problems or the solutions.

    As a tradesperson, with Advanced Trade in Sheetmetal Engineering, I understand the concept of ‘doing an apprenticeship’.

    When it comes to local government, I have been actively involved as a ‘community activist’ / Public Watchdog, since 1997, when Metrowater was inflicted upon us by Auckland City Council.

    Having had thus over 15 years experience, I have ‘done my time’, and am no ‘Johnny come lately’ – meant of course, in a caring way :)

    Cheers!

    Penny Bright

  11. Daveosaurus 11

    Reuben Shadbolt’s qualification to be Mayor is apparently that he is Tim Shadbolt’s son. Our elected representatives should have greater qualifications than this

    But it’s apparently still considered an adequate qualification for this country’s Head of State.

    It’s really time that a certain sector of NZ society got dragged, kicking and screaming, out of the 19th century…

  12. What, you really think John Minto could get second?

    Be honest, now.

    • QoT 12.1

      Oh fuck off, Brett. Micky’s post quite clearly states:

      John Palino is probably going to be a distant second although John Minto’s principled campaign should deservedly attract some attention and a second place for him would be a tremendous result.

      If you have difficulty with the longer words I suggest googling them.

      • Brett Dale 12.1.1

        qot:

        I read it, Savage was clearly suggesting, Minto could place second. I very much doubt that he will get anywhere near second place.

        • mickysavage 12.1.1.1

          As Qot said I stated that Palino would probably come second. He would be the weakest mayoral candidate the right have run for the Auckland Mayoralty ever, so I would not describe him as a shoe in for second.

          • Brett Dale 12.1.1.1.1

            You also said that it would be a great result for Minto if he gets second, I took it, that you
            think he is a chance to do this.

  13. karol 13

    I agree it’s all in the local boards/ward, and also with those above saying that Hide’s shadow has poisoned the whole Auckland Council set up.

    So Younger Shadbolt is standing for the Whau ward – and like his dad has a tendency to violence, according to the Herald.

    Looks like some Labour candidates in there, so look forward to your take on the battle for the wards/boards, micky.

    “Community Independents”, “progressive independents”, “totally independent”, “Community First”??? What can that all mean? How progressives are the “progressive independents”?

    Why don’t people choose names that give more of an indication of policy and approach to them?

    • Rupert 13.1

      I used to live across the road from Reuben Shadbolt. I’d rather have a TV chef for a mayor than a guy who used to stand on his balcony yelling at primary school kids.

      More recently, Reuben showed up at a meeting of the North Shore branch of the NZ Association of Rationalists & Humanists to try to get support for an atheist party. He was disruptive, and several of the attendees felt physically threatened. He also has some fringe medical beliefs that did not go over well with the rationalist side of the meeting.

      So, no, not getting my vote, regardless of parentage.

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