City council cuts back on world cup spending
The threat of global recession has prompted politicians to pare back spending on the Rugby World Cup.
Auckland City Council has trimmed plans for activities and promotions during the 2011 tournament to $28.8 million, from the previous $33.9m.
Arts, culture and recreation committee chairman Greg Moyle said he was disappointed but “felt compelled to remove $5m from the project”.
He said at last week’s meeting the council needed to act responsibly in light of the global economic crisis.
“We are hopeful that we may be able to reconsider these items and bring them back in future years.”
Savings will be made by cuts to large-scale city dressing projects, such as building wraps and lighting.
Arts and cultural programming, international relations, community engagement, public art and business programmes will also be cut or scaled back.
The change brings the council’s total planned spend on the 2011 tournament to $60.8m.
That includes $32m on capital projects in the Eden Park precinct and possible training grounds, as well as the $28.8m on activities during the cup.
Mayor John Banks defended the spend at the meeting, saying the council had to put money into hosting the cup.
“No major OECD city is going to bid for the third biggest sporting event in the world on the basis of not putting up any dollars,” he said.
A bid by councillor Richard Northey to have funding options put to the public for feedback was defeated.
“The public ought to be consulted about what level of funding is appropriate for this,” he said.
The funding will be confi through the council’s 2009-2019 10-year plan.