The First of the Spin 
Monday, May 28, 2012 at 12:07PM
Bill Barclay

Here is the first of the spin announcements out of TCDC this morning:

The Thames-Coromandel District Council is on track to deliver its second average rates decrease in as many years when it adopts the 2012 Ten Year Plan next month.

This year the average rate on the Coromandel decreased by 1% and next financial year, the Council looks set on locking in an average decrease of over 5%.

"We’ve been able to deliver a good result because of a combination of two things; organisational savings and a prudent Ten Year plan” said Mayor Glenn Leach. 

"We know times are tough for our people and this Council is determined to buck the national trend and deliver rates savings where we can".

"Even across the ten years, the average increase will only be 1.9%, which is a fair result and an affordable approach given these uncertain times".

Read the full story here to find out about the average rate movements in your Community Board area.

"Organisational savings, and a prudent Ten Year Plan". That is pure 'spin', and deviates from the truth in ways that verge on self delusion. As I have stated on several occasions without contradiction, the rate decrease results almost wholly from Capex postponement - principally stormwater and IT, and $20m additional borrowing.   Leach may twist and turn in every which way, but this basic truth remains. The "Organisational changes" that have resulted in a $700,000 redundancy bill to date may bring about some savings in personnel costs, but I predict that the medium to long term consequences for this Council will be devastating, and counter productive.  

He will of course get credit from the vast majority who only care about the bottom line on their rate demand, but it does not excuse the blatant lies that have been told over and over during this TYP process.

There are changes that have ben brought about that were long overdue, and for which Leach should get credit, but this is not one. It is qite simply smoke and mirrors.

Shame on all concerned. 


Update on Wednesday, May 30, 2012 at 10:52AM by Registered CommenterBill Barclay

Steve Baker disputes the $700,000 redundancy figure that I have quoted. Someone used the figure in the meeting, but clearly it was not Steve. He indicates that the figure will be "substantially lower". I will await it with interest in the Annual Report - I don't expect to be that much lower, but we will see in due course. At least it indicates that Steve reads the blog, and he did not dispute anything else in this post. 




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