Greens Policy in regards to City Rail Link
Yesterday The Greens released a press release countering what would be the cold water from the Prime Minister poured over the Mayor in regards to the $250 million sweetener that went up on offer yesterday. It seems the release got missed by the main stream media and even most blogs. I asked MP Julie Anne Genter for a copy of the release and the link was provided this morning.
From The Greens:
Govt leaves Auckland waiting for the train
The Green Party is challenging the Government to commit to funding Auckland’s City Rail Link to start in 2016 rather than wait for two more election cycles.
The Green Party supports the Auckland City Council’s proposal to start the City Rail Link project on time in 2016, saving Auckland $100 million a year in higher construction costs and getting Auckland moving again sooner. “National is proposing to wait two more elections before committing to build the most critical missing piece of Auckland’s transport infrastructure.” “The National Government’s plan is to wait for congestion to reach a critical point before starting the City Rail Link,” said Green Party transport spokesperson Julie Anne Genter today.
“The City Rail Link should be a priority for Government transport funding; the link is the most effective way to reduce congestion and transport costs, lower emissions, and develop Auckland into a vibrant, greener city. “The City Rail Link will more than double the productivity of rail in the area and carry the equivalent of 12 motorway lanes of traffic into and around the city.”By building the City Rail Link on time, we not only save half-a-billion dollars, we also provide certainty for businesses who are looking to invest and save Aucklanders up to half-an-hour on their journeys across the city.
“If the National Government’s commitment to the City Rail Link was real, and not just a hollow, unfunded promise, it should commit to a 2016 start date. If they can’t, the Green Party will,” Ms Genter said.
Labour MPs have also been Tweeting this morning as well after prompting on the City Rail Link
That respective link provides the following:
PHIL TWYFORD | 10 FEB 2014
Len Brown’s offer to kick start the City Rail Link is a no brainer and the Government should grab it with both hands, Labour’s Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Mayor is only reflecting a desire by Aucklanders to see the rail project up and running as soon as possible. “National’s refusal to move on the City Rail Link until 2020 is holding back Auckland’s growth and prosperity.
“Aucklanders know the project will double the number of trains on the network and unlock huge development in the central city. “Precinct Properties, the owner of the Downtown centre, are even offering to start digging the first section of tunnel themselves. “What would it take to get the Prime Minister to say yes? A working bee with thousands of Aucklanders hand-digging the tunnel with picks and shovels?
“If the Government has said it will fund the project 50:50, and Auckland Council is willing to front load its share to get it started, what is the downside for the tax payer? “John Key and his Government will be a distant memory by his preferred start for the project of 2020.
“If he refuses to budge on this, then you have to wonder whether his high profile flip flop on the City Rail Link was more about political expediency than a genuine commitment to the project.”
The releases from both Labour and the Greens does not absolve our Mayor shooting from the hip (or rather lip_ though and not running the offer through the standard committee and Governing Body procedures first…