Wellington City Council wants to freeze $8 million for events spending over the next 12 months despite predictions public gatherings will continue to be banned for over a year.
The council is proposing to set aside the money in a city recovery fund aimed at marketing campaigns and delivering a “strong programme of early events” once the nationwide coronavirus lockdown ends.
Any spending on events in the next six to 12 months is nuts. Councils need to understand the world has changed.
City councillor Tamatha Paul said the $8m fund needed to be adjusted to provide targeted support for industries and businesses affected by the lockdown measures.
“We know there aren’t going to be any events in Wellington for a while, so there’s no point setting money aside for events that might not even end up happening.”
Paul planned to move an amendment at Thursday’s council meeting to see the money redirected towards environmental and technological advancement, emissions and waste reduction, and Kaupapa Māori innovation.
She believed she had the necessary support among councillors.
Instead of not spending the money and stopping rates going up, the Councillors want to just spend it elsewhere on pet projects. They just don’t get it.
Business and household incomes are falling. The Council needs to restrict spending to essential services, not pet projects.
If you work out $8 million of spending in one area is daft, then can the spending – don’t find other ways to spend it.
If Councillors can’t do it, then voters need to punish them for it at the election when they will still be struggling, yet facing higher and higher rates bills.