World cup could get more later
Leaving the way open to put more money into the Rugby World Cup has been labelled a flip-flop by some Auckland city councillors.
The council has left some wriggle-room in its earlier decision to cut $5 million in funding because of the global economic crisis.
Projects could be reinstated by diverting surplus and increasing a targeted rate, according to a decision at Tuesday’s long-term plan direction-setting meeting.
Councillor Cathy Casey said the move shows the original budget cut was a sham.
“I am sure that if Mr Banks had told ratepayers that their final bill was going to be $66 million, they would never have let him back into the mayoral chains,” Dr Casey said.
Committee chairman Doug Armstrong said before the meeting the extra $5m probably needs to be spent.
But the council will look for other sources of funding.
“We’re going to put heat on ourselves to try to finance it in alternative ways,” Mr Armstrong said.
He said with the world cup three years away, there is time for the projects to be reconsidered later.
Plans for capital projects in the Eden Park precinct and activities during the cup so far total more than $60m.
The council proposes to fund the plans using council’s $11m surplus, reallocating $6.8m in existing budgets, $4 from external sources, and a targeted rate.
The rate would apply in 2011-2012 only, and raise $6.9m.