The Auckland Ratepayers’ Alliance has released:
Auckland Council has spent $8.5 million of ratepayers money on grants to business groups since November 2010 – and that doesn’t include the $20 million given to the failed Heart of the City group.
Business groups should be funded by business with an idea to keep the Council on its toes. Instead the Super City has turned them into Council cheerleaders thanks to this generous slush fund. We uncovered that a grant was even made for augmented reality wayfinding technology – whatever that is!
Ratepayers deserve answers from the Council as to why this is the best use of $8.5 million, rather than frontline services and core infrastructure. It’s little wonder that rates have increased when the Council takes over a function that has always been the role of the local Chamber of Commerce.
45 separate business groups have received $8.5 million since November 2010. They should be funded by local businesses, if they deem them of value, not by ratepayers.