Brownlee’s dirty little deal

Written By: - Date published: 11:30 am, July 20th, 2011 - 12 comments
Categories: corruption, Gerry Brownlee - Tags: , ,

I/S has revealed how Gerry Brownlee handpicked the “independent” body that is meant to monitor the use of his CERA powers. He appointed Jenny Shipley to the panel and got her $1000 a day, three times the usual pay. Brownlee said the extra was needed to get the people he wanted. But the chair says money didn’t enter into it for him.

Here’s what I/S investigation turned up:

  • Brownlee had decided who he would appoint before the law had even been introduced to Parliament;
  • The appointment process does not seem to have followed SSC guidelines [PDF]. It does not seem to have been advertised, even in the broad sense used by SSC; no long or short-list of candidates was drawn up [PDF]; no interviews appear to have been conducted to confirm the suitability of the candidates. It appears as if Brownlee pulled these names out of his arse, and then imposed them on us. The people of Canterbury, of course, were not consulted.
  • To add insult to injury, having appointed these people with no proper process, Brownlee then decided to pay them at triple the normal rate [PDF], on the basis that “it will not be possible to secure their services under the current fees range”. No effort appears to have been made to find candidates who would do the work within the government’s budget. This was agreed to by State Services Minister Tony Ryall [PDF].

The last point is an out and out lie. The chair, Sir John Hansen, told TVNZ that he has never inquired about the remuneration and pay wasn’t an issue to him. He wanted the job because he considers it an “important public service”. He hasn’t even billed the government for the work he has done.

I wonder if the same is true of Shipley.

12 comments on “Brownlee’s dirty little deal”

  1. Oblimova 1

    Time to read Naomi Klein’s ‘The Shock Doctrine” if you haven’t already.

  2. marsman 2

    Shipley should not be allowed anywhere near public entities such as CERA or the Genesis Board of directors or any that have the betterment of people’s lives at stake. We all know what a nasty cow she is when it comes to the betterment of all.

  3. marsman 3

    Will we ever be told how Shipley and Pansy Wong were involved with one another? Investigative journalists where are you???

    • Tom Gould 3.1

      Investigative journalists? In the press gallery? Haven’t you been following the Murdoch meltdown? Big Gerry knows damn well that no matter how lazy or stupid or venal he and his mates are, their bought and paid for mates in the gallery will spike it, or at the least, balance it up with something Labour did 25 years ago.

  4. mik e 4

    Next it will be a dame hood

  5. Lanthanide 5

    It would be nice, if Labour wins the election, for them to go back and look at these appointments. If they find due process was not followed, they should cancel the contracts and force everyone to re-apply.

  6. Tag the bloated cost onto the deficit is the mantra of the government when it comes to being careful fiscally.

  7. Who in their right mind would pay tax?

  8. Rog Chapman 8

    I wonder how the thousands of volunteers who gave freely of their time helping with the cleanup in the earthquake aftermath feel about this! Just another example of jobs for the boys and girls. The greedy right strike again – where is their sense of community service. Oh I forgot, the right don’t do anything unless they get handsomely paid for it. Anyway, why is it necessary to have this elite little group overseeing another group, which in turn oversees another group etc etc etc.

    What skills does Shipley have to do this job?

    • Descendant Of Smith 8.1

      A. Helping one SOE borrow 300 million so another SOE can sell it stuff we already own
      2. Helping jobs building trains go from NZ to China
      3. Recruiting people with fake qualifications for top jobs in the military

      What more do you need

  9. This is old news for us Cantabrians who have witnessed the jack ups within the rotten pocket borough that Environment Canterbury has become since the National led government removed our council and our rights. In fact the present debarcle in our Gerry Built Christchurch has sparked speculation by us that we may also be paying way over the odds for this governments ECan commissioners fees. See our News page for the full article:

    • You know, it really is pretty hypocritical when the likes of Key and MacCully label Fiji about their old boys club and they exhibit even more shonky behaviour when it comes to democracy.

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