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Twyford: Key Must Put An End To Boundary Nonsense Now

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Phil Twyford
Phil Twyford

Prime Minister John Key needs to reverse his Government's divisive plans to carve up Auckland and he needs to do it immediately, says Labour's Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford.

"The proposed boundary changes to Rodney and Franklin came out of left field and have served to confirm just how shambolic the Government's handling of the Auckland governance reform process has been.

"John Key needs to take the matter in hand and reverse the nonsense boundary decisions made by his Cabinet before the reforms lose all credibility whatsoever.

"It's simply remarkable that his own electorate MPs in the affected areas are organising public meetings or speaking out publicly with their concerns at this late stage in the process," Phil Twyford says.

"It seems they weren't consulted, were simply ignored or didn't actually do their homework until the wrath of their electorates forced them into action.

"The Government has tried to claim that the change of heart over the Rodney and Franklin boundaries was a result of select committee submissions.

"If that's the case, it's very clear that select committee chairperson and Associate Local Government Minister John Carter misread public sentiment, which raises questions about his management of the process.

"We do know however, that Cabinet made the decision before the select committee had even reported back, which raises the alternate scenario that it simply let officials concoct the ridiculous boundary plans," Phil Twyford says.

"Aucklanders are already deeply skeptical about the cavalier approach the Government has taken to the reforms, which has been compounded by poor consultation all the way through. The Government's failure to even articulate a logical explanation for its boundary decisions further undermines its performance.

"Labour supports the Royal Commission's persuasive arguments in favour of Rodney being kept within Auckland and for the southern boundary to be pushed south to the Waikato River.

"Labour won't be voting for the Government's Local Government (Auckland Council) Bill in Parliament this week because it remains badly flawed. But Auckland deserves more than hints of another u-turn on the boundaries before the vote - it deserves confirmation of one."

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