Steven Joyce has finally revealed the benefit/cost ratio for the billion dollar Transmission Gully project. A few weeks ago he was mocking Sue Kedgley for saying that the costs would outweigh the benefits and claiming that the BCR would be about 1.5 ($1.50 benefit for each $1 spent). It turns out Joyce was lying. There is just 60 cents of benefit for every dollar that will be spent building the highway.
Joyce, apparently, is a businessman. So he knows damn well that its nonsense to say:
“You’ve got to look at it longer term. I wouldn’t want to see us just do one part without the other part. On that basis, it stacks up OK.”
The benefit/cost analysis takes into account the ‘longer term’ and the consequent benefits, and costs, of doing Transmission Gully as part of wider upgrades. It does not ‘stack up OK’ it comes out at 60 cents of benefit for every dollar we spend.
What the hell is wrong with this government? We’re borrowing $240 million a week, 250,000 Kiwis are out of work, there are endless demands on health and education. And that best thing these idiots can come up with to spend a billion dollars on is a project that will give the country $600 million of benefit? Put that money into early childhood education, or at-risk children, or preventative health and you get pay-offs of $10 plus for every dollar spent.
Spend it on bloody Transmission Gully and you’re just flushing 40 cents in every dollar down the toilet. This government is planning to take a billion dollars of our money, and burn $400 million of it.
Stupid, stupid, stupid.