I/S at No Right Turn on Transmission Gully…
Last year, the government announced that doing Transmission Gully using a Public-Private partnership would cost $300 million more than if the government built it. That’s bad enough, but it’s worse than that. Today, the Minister admitted that the private-sector markup would be $2 billion:
Transport Minister Gerry Brownlee’s pig-headedness was on full display today when he wrote off $2 billion of taxpayer money as being ‘irrelevant’, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says.
“Answering questions at select committee today Mr Brownlee said Transmission Gully will be built by public private partnership (PPP) even if doing so is more expensive than usual public sector contracting.
“The extra $2 billion that would add to the lifetime cost of the road was ‘irrelevant’.
This is a scam, pure and simple. That $2 billion is money we could be spending on schools, hospitals, and public transport. Instead, its going to go straight into the pockets of National’s road-building cronies. And why? So they can hide debt and pretend the government books are in better shape than they really are. And then of course, they’ll cry about “a decade of waste” from when labour was in government (you know, when they ran surpluses all the time and unemployment was at record lows).
This is economic mismanagement, it is waste, and it is outright corrupt. And any future government should unilaterally cancel the PPP contract rather than let it stand.