NRT: More dictatorship from Brownlee

Written By: - Date published: 11:06 am, November 23rd, 2012 - 11 comments
Categories: democracy under attack, Gerry Brownlee, local government, national - Tags: , , ,

No Right Turn on the Nats’ contemplating yet another way to trample on democracy in Christchurch…


More dictatorship from Brownlee

This morning, the Christchurch City Council voted to save its town hall from the bulldozer. it was a unanimous vote, reflecting the value Christchurch sets on its iconic building. So naturally, Gerry Brownlee is threatening to overturn it:

But Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee said the decision could put plans on hold for a performing arts centre, which is in the Government’s blueprint for the central city.

Mr Brownlee said it’s unlikely the city can have both.

He said it’s disappointing the council has committed so much money, given there is no certainty the entire facility can be repaired.

However, Mr Brownlee admits the council may have information that he does not about repair options.

Brownlee should butt out. What Christchurch ultimately looks like is a decision for the people who live there. And as a democratically elected body, the Christchurch City Council is the body best placed to decide that – not some Minister who spends most of his time in Wellington.

11 comments on “NRT: More dictatorship from Brownlee”

  1. vto 1

    Exactly. Brownlee should butt out. I suspect he will on this one but that he just has an obligation to make those noises upfront.

    Saving the Town Hall will happen. If not just because that is what Christchurch people want but also because it makes economic sense (let along cultural etc sense). $120million to fix it. Do you imagine demolishing it and building some replacement will cost less than that? I don’t think so – not by a long shot.

    Brownlee will be well aware of this, and the bubbling cauldron of discontent at the lack of democracy (which our forefathers fought for in various world and other wars, let’s not forget) in our region.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 1.1

      Dont believe any of the costs about ‘repair’. It will be much much more expensive to repair than rebuild as once the y are underway ‘changes’ will inevitably occur.

  2. ianmac 2

    Surely the decision to restore the town hall would have been made based on good research. Of course Mr Brownlie would have equally sound research to counter the restoration, wouldn’t he. So far he thinks that a look at the interior is enough research. Rise up Christchurch!

  3. Lanthanide 3

    I’ve never seen what’s so special about the town hall. Really I think it’s kind of ugly.

    I agree with Brownlee: if the council weren’t actually properly taking all factors into account, then their vote is pretty much meaningless. As a ratepayer, I don’t really want to be on the hock for repairing something if it’s more cost effective (and better suits community needs) to build a brand new building.

    • vto 3.1

      see my point above about the cost to ratepayers of demolition and rebuild cf repair

      • Lanthanide 3.1.1

        “Do you imagine demolishing it and building some replacement will cost less than that? I don’t think so – not by a long shot.”

        I think it’s possible, because a large part of the problem is the land it’s on. It’s difficult to repair land when buildings are on it, but it’s easier (so, cheaper) to repair land on a new empty site and then build a new building on it.

        They also want to improve the building standard from existing 33% of building code to 100% for earthquake resistance, which again is quite expensive for existing buildings. I could easily believe that building something from scratch that meets 100% of code could be cheaper than refitting an existing building.

        • DS1 3.1.1.1

          My understanding was the the repair option was $120mil and replace was $160mil.

          Personally, the Town Hall is one of my favourite buildings. The acoustics are incredible (CBS Arena is shocking), and there are some magic memories there. Including graduation.

          We’ve already lost so many of our best and most beautiful buildings… it’d be nice if we could save one or two.

          But looking at the wider picture – I think this comes down to a clash between what the community (via the democratically elected council) wants vs what the Minister and the (unelected) CERA want.

    • Richard Christie 3.2

      I’ve never seen what’s so special about the town hall.

      It has irritated me that most international touring musical acts have been for decades choosing venues such as the Westpac Stadium over the Town Hall .
      Superb acoustics don’t seem to have been enough to guarantee its use, except for classical and orchestral gigs.

      • Lanthanide 3.2.1

        I’d suggest probably the lack of car-parking and difficult transport makes it less desirable for those sorts of things.

  4. David H 4

    But not forgetting that Joyce had a go at Auckland university’s for not offering enough Engineering courses, and threatening the same democracy as they give to canty council.

    http://www.3news.co.nz/Joyce-threatens-academic-freedom–Greens/tabid/1607/articleID/277252/Default.aspx

    So that’s why Brownlee’s face, zoomed in, close up, was on TV this morning scaring my boy. It looked like a a veiled threat. My way, or else.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/christchurch-earthquake-2011/7983889/Brownlee-queries-councils-Town-Hall-decision

  5. irascible 5

    Consider that Parrota and the Cabinet have opted for the most expensive proposal for restructuring of ChCh schools with the note that if the wishes of the communities are taken into account the cabinet’s preference will be at risk and you can see that democracy is far from the minds of this KeY owned cabinet.

    The spin to be used to justify the $1Billion + option is that this will benefit low achieving Maori& Pasifika children. An assertion that, from the reporting available on RNZ, appears to be based on an assumption that by combining schools best practice from both will be combined into super programmes that will boost the identified preferred groups. Sounds like the same spin, later proven to be false by Issacs, that Charter Schools would be directed to boosting Maori & Pasifika achievement in South Auckland and Christchurch as that would be where such schools would be based.

Leave a Comment

Show Tags

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Why has Pike footage been hidden for so long?
    New footage of workers servicing a robot in the Pike River drift appears to show that going into the drift doesn’t pose the danger the Government and Solid Energy claimed, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. ...
    4 hours ago
  • Nats’ housing policy fails to keep pace with population growth
    Auckland got less than half the new houses it needed in the past year to keep up with record population growth, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    2 days ago
  • Urgent action needed on dirty rivers
    The Our Fresh Water Environment 2017 report re-confirms that we need urgent action to clean up our rivers. Meanwhile, National is standing by as our rivers get even more polluted, says Labour’s Environment spokesperson David Parker. “This report is yet ...
    3 days ago
  • Where there’s smoke and mirrors, there’s Steven Joyce
    Steven Joyce’s much vaunted pre-Budget speech is simply an underwhelming response to the infrastructure deficit National has created, says Labour’s Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Steven Joyce has belatedly come to the realisation that everyone else has a long time ago, ...
    3 days ago
  • Time to stamp out cold, mouldy rentals
    New figures show a small number of landlords are letting down the sector by renting cold, mouldy rentals. These houses need to be brought up to a decent standard for people to live in by Andrew Little’s Healthy Homes Bill, ...
    4 days ago
  • Time for fresh approach on immigration
    Latest figures showing another record year for immigration underlines the need for an urgent rethink on how this country can continue to absorb so many people, says Labour Leader Andrew Little. “New Zealand needs immigrants and is all the better ...
    4 days ago
  • Bring back the Mental Health Commission
    The People’s Mental Health Review is a much needed wake up call for the Government on mental health, says the Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little.   “I applaud their proposal to restore a Mental Health Commission and their call for ...
    6 days ago
  • And the band played on…
    Making Amy Adams the Housing Minister five months out from the election is just the orchestra playing on as National’s Titanic housing crisis slips below the waves – along with the hopes and dreams of countless Kiwi families, says Labour’s ...
    6 days ago
  • Hotel no place for children in care
    ...
    1 week ago
  • Maybe not, Minister? Nick Smith’s housing measure suppressed
    Sir Humphrey: Minister, remember the Housing Affordability Measure work you asked us to prepare back in 2012? Well, it’s ready now.Minister Smith: Oh goodie, what does it say?Sir Humphrey: Nothing.Minister Smith: Nothing?Sir Humphrey: Well, sir, you asked us to prepare ...
    1 week ago
  • Inflation data shows many New Zealanders are worse off under National
    The latest inflation data from Statistics New Zealand shows that too many New Zealanders are now worse off under the National Government, said Labour’s Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson “Consumer Price Inflation (CPI) is now running at 2.2 per cent, and ...
    1 week ago
  • Another emergency housing grant blow out
      Emergency housing grants data released today show another blow out in spending on putting homeless people up in motels, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.   ...
    1 week ago
  • Families struggle as hardship grants increase
    The considerable increase in hardship grants shows that more and more Kiwi families are struggling to put food on the table and pay for basic schooling, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni. ...
    1 week ago
  • More tinkering, no leadership from Nats on immigration
    National’s latest tinkering with the immigration system is another attempt to create the appearance of action without actually doing anything meaningful, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Suicide figures make for grim reading
    The 506 suspected suicides of Kiwis who have been in the care of mental health services in the last four years show that these services are under severe stress, says Labour’s Health spokesperson David Clark.   “If you do the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Pay equity deal a victory for determination and unions
    The pay equity settlement revealed today for around 55,000 low-paid workers was hard-won by a determined Kristine Bartlett backed by her union, up against sheer Government resistance to paying Kiwis their fair share, says Labour Leader Andrew Little. “Labour welcomes ...
    2 weeks ago
  • DHB’s forced to make tough choices
    The Minister of Health today admitted that the country’s District Health Boards were having to spend more than their ring fenced expenditure on Mental Health, says Labour’s Health spokesperson David Clark.   “The situation is serious with Capital and Coast ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Nats break emergency housing pledge – deliver just five more places
    Despite National’s promises of 2,200 emergency housing beds, just 737 were provided in the March Quarter, an increase of only five from six months earlier, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Research underlines need for KiwiBuild
    New research showing the social and fiscal benefits of homeownership underlines the need for a massive government-backed building programme like KiwiBuild, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Social data security review too little, too late
    The independent review into the Ministry of Social Development’s individual client level data IT system is too little, too late, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni. “The Minister of Social Development has finally seen some sense and called for ...
    3 weeks ago
  • More questions raised on CERA conflicts
    With the admission that three more former CERA staff members are under suspicion of not appropriately managing conflicts of interest related to the Canterbury rebuild, it’s imperative that CERA’s successor organisation Ōtākaro fronts up to Parliamentary questions, says Labour’s Canterbury ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Labour to tackle Hutt housing crisis
    Labour will build a mix of 400 state houses and affordable KiwiBuild homes in the Hutt Valley in its first term in government to tackle the housing crisis there, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. “Housing in the Hutt ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Farewell to John Clarke
    This wonderfully talented man has been claimed by Australia, but how I remember John Clarke is as a young Wellington actor who performed satirical pieces in a show called “Knickers” at Downstage Theatre. The show featured other future luminaries like ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    3 weeks ago
  • Valedictory Speech
    Te papa pounamu Aotearoa NZ Karanga karanga karanga; Nga tupuna Haere haere haere; Te kahui ora te korowai o tenei whare; E tu e tu ... tutahi tonu Ki a koutou oku hoa mahi ki Te Kawanatanga; Noho mai noho ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Buck stops with Gerry Brownlee
    The fact that the State Services Commission has referred the CERA conflict of interest issue to the Serious Fraud Office is a positive move, but one that raises serious questions about the Government’s oversight of the rebuild, says Labour Canterbury ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Teachers deserve a democratic Education Council
    Teachers around New Zealand reeling from the news that their registration fees could more than double will be even angrier that the National Government has removed their ability to have any say about who sits on the Council that sets ...
    3 weeks ago