Posted on 10-9-2004
Fletcher GABA Debate
Ed. PlaNet TV has screened two programmes of the three interviews
main contenders to be Auckland Mayor for next three years. The
interniew will be with Chris Fletcher this coming Monday on
Triangle TV at
I want to tell you why I’m fighting for Auckland.
Some say it’s personal - that I have a vendetta against
I don't. I'm simply frustrated that our hard fought for strategic
2000 “First City of the Pacific” has stalled.
The Herald suggests I give Dick Hubbard a clear ride because
seems better than Banks.
Well that’s a very short-term view. As a Jafa through
and through I am not
about to support a candidate who on the basis of a few vague
statements has shown himself to be no less a front for the roading
than Banks himself.
My assessment thus far is voting in Mr. Hubbard will be a matter
changing style not substance.
He supports the completion of the Eastern Motorway. I don't.
He suggests Auckland becoming a city of four million people.
He suggests Auckland needs four harbour crossings. I don't.
We won't just
have spaghetti junction then we'll have spaghetti harbour!
He supports selling our airport shares. I don't.
He nominates his mentors as being American business gurus. I
I support acting in the best interests of Auckland, independently
putting Auckland first, as I have always done.
I will not be intimidated by lobby groups - business, media
No city wants a Mayor who crumples at the first sign of adversity.
This race will not be over until this blonde, rather fat lady
I am not anti-road or anti-business.
I support the completion of the SH 20 link.
But I am now the ONLY candidate opposed to the Eastern Motorway.
I have fought this issue for 15 years in Parliament, as Mayor
my volunteer community work to prevent the wasteful investment
of dollars in a silly scheme that will do nothing to ease congestion.
It is environmentally destructive and foolish. Beware the weasel
those seeking to appease you with a "scaled down version".
suggesting you are only a little bit pregnant.
I m now awaiting the announcement of the scaling down of the
V8 race to
a V6 or V4 event or better still a bicycle race.
While Banks and Hubbard argue the size of their toys, they are
the agreed regional priorities. These were developed under my
of the Regional Mayoral Forum in partnership with the Mayors
wonderful late Phil Warren.
That is what needs to be done in Auckland.
Infrastructure investment cannot be held up by the type of parochialism
displayed by Mr Banks - it must be strategic therefore regionally
Britomart was the circuit breaker. It is the interchange for
a new system
where commuters transfer between state of the art rail, bus
For this to work we must urgently upgrade our underutilised
investment, with the rail corridors now back in control with
electric trains and light rail.
Light rail above ground (tram based) to link the CBD through
with the universities, Newmarket and the Western line,
I want people to rave about our public transport system just
as they do
when they return from Melbourne or Perth.
Don't let them fool you that we have to become a larger city
rail to work. That is nonsense. We can do it now on our existing
SH 20 is the priority for completion mitigating the environmental
(Using cut and cover techniques.)
We require new piers and greater choice of ferry services, taking
advantage of our harbour city status, just as Sydney has done.
We must complete the bus lanes and provide really safe “park
facilities preventing the current crowding of inner-city streets.
Finally Auckland must be a pedestrian and bicycle friendly city.
invest in our footpaths and cycle ways. Our children should
be walking and
cycling to school not driving a car.
I am also the only candidate espousing a growth strategy that
account the unique values and landscapes of this beautiful city.
I oppose the current population targets for Auckland signed
off by the
current Mayor and ARC.
John wants another 250,000 people. Goodness knows where he plans
them. No doubt his property developer friends have some plans.
Well that's better than Mr. Hubbard's view that Auckland should
plan for a
mega-city of four million people.
Forgive me sounding preachy but the character in our neighbourhoods,
heritage and iconic landscape will be utterly lost.
I’m perplexed that Mr. Hubbard can also passionately espouse
pragmatic sustainability policies” in virtually the same
That’s bad breath.
The economic base to our city cannot be focussed so completely
The common Hubbard/Banks view is not sustainable.
Our economic future must embrace tourism.
Our manufacturing sector is important but we will never be able
with China on labour costs. We have to pitch at high value niche
This makes wise stewardship for our environment crucial. We
and retain innovative, entrepreneurial, creative people to generate
create jobs and capital.
These people will choose Auckland for quality of life. They
slums, congestion and smog. They want to see our clear blue
Aucklanders must therefore have a say on the size and style
of our city.
Any growth must include plans for social services like schools
hospitals as well as the parks, playing fields, storm water
Bank’s plan is largely silent on these issues.
We are not coping with our existing population.
Mr. Hubbard wants 4 million people. Hello? Not for the Auckland
I want to
live in thanks.
Functioning communities need detail and planning. Education
and health are
human rights issues. I am proud of New Zealand’s international
but we could put this in jeopardy if we close our minds to the
needs of people and communities in our plans.
I believe in fair play and have always endeavoured to be a force
in politics. I don’t stand on the sideline.
I have a strong track record on human rights built over 15 years.
In politics some people take the option of the easy road avoiding
issues. That is not the path I have chosen.
I was brought up to believe in "to thine own self be true".
Silence and apathy is as deadly to justice as the poison and
I am proud to be the patron of the GABA Trust.
So tonight. Two men and one woman. Different styles of leadership
different policies. The choice is yours.
Mr. Banks. Well as Forest Gump would say "you all know
what I think about
Mr. Hubbard. Undoubtedly a less strident individual. I find
that some media have lauded him for the very virtues of inclusiveness
consensus which they find such a vice in me. But hey that’s
But I wonder when we get past the personality stuff (the love
stage) and issues start to dominate - will we discover Mr. Hubbard
essentially John Banks in sheep's clothing.
I wonder what the real motivation is for Mr. Hubbard to enter
this race -
at the last possible moment. Great PR. It leaves little time
scrutiny of policies.
Mr. Hubbard says his candidacy was driven by the disrespectful
Banks addressed the Mayor of North Shore.
Well good on him. But where was he when Mr. Banks was being
to the pensioners of Auckland and ready to throw them out of
I was there.
Where was Mr. Hubbard when honest citizens were being arrested
Council Chamber for daring to speak against Mr Banks?
I was there.
Where was Mr. Hubbard when the Annual Plan submissions needed
to be made
on the Birch report or the enormous and unbudgeted costs for
Motorway being dismissed? I don't remember him.
But I was there.
I was there and I will be there. I have delivered on every political
commitment I have ever made.
I have the experience, I know what will work.
With me you know there is no other agenda at play. I am independent
will work with or without a majority on Council.
We don't need any more consultants reporting on reports.
We have a plan - Let’s just do it.