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Ex Labour MP Phil Gough keeping the trough topped up

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Author Topic: Ex Labour MP Phil Gough keeping the trough topped up  (Read 16 times)
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« on: October 05, 2017, 08:20:01 am »

...it's a rort.....why would Auckland city public servants need to be paid more than Brisbane city public servants...
...oh that's right...we live in a country being overpowered by socialists😳
..imagine that .....194 people in the Auckland council are on more than $200k a year😳

Big rise in $200,000-plus salaries at Auckland Council

One in five staff at Auckland Council is earning more than $100,000 as the wages bill for the Super City blows out for the third year in a row.

What's more, the number of executives earning more than $200,000 has increased by 25 per cent in the past year, from 155 to 194, according to figures in the council's 2016-2017 annual report.

The council and its six council-controlled organisations(CCOs) employ 11,893 staff, of whom 2322 earn more than $100,000.

Brisbane City Council - often compared to Auckland Council - employs about 8000 staff, of whom 149 earn more than A$100,000.

In the past three years, the wages bill at Auckland Council has blown out by tens of millions of dollars each year. Council set a budget of $811m in the past year and spent $853m on wages.

The $42m increase gobbles up $1.8m in savings from a big restructure of libraries, $13.5m in new revenue from Mayor Phil Goff's "bed tax", and more. The increase would comfortably pay for the new $35m bus and train interchange at Manukau.

Goff, who has promised to cut fat at council, said he was surprised at the big increase in $200,000-plus pay packets and had asked council chief executive Stephen Town for an explanation. He also wanted a rundown on how salaries are set and benchmarked against other public-sector bodies.

Goff said factors like Ports of Auckland buying two new businesses had increased the total staff count. When they were excluded, actual council staff numbers had dropped by 11.

He said the $42m increase in staff costs was partly driven by pay errors in the Holidays Act costing $18m and unbudgeted redundancies costing $11m.

In a statement, Town said the reason for the increase in $200,000-plus salaries included pay increases taking them over the threshold, new roles and, in some cases, two roles being merged into one role with broader responsibilities

On the issue of total staff numbers, Town said extra staff had been brought in on big projects, like the City Rail Link and the council itself had reduced 108 back-office jobs.

"Council's focus continues to be on responding to Auckland's growth by investing in critical infrastructure and delivering services across a wide range of areas," said Town, whose salary has increased from $655,846 to $690,000 in the past year.

Councillor Mike Lee said the failure to stay within the wages budget was a scandal.

"Council senior staff have always been diligent in budgeting very generous pay increases for themselves but it seems even this is not enough.

"Auckland ratepayers simply cannot afford this level of fleecing and are reaching the limits of their tolerance," Lee said.

Four days ago, the Herald on Sunday reported that a top council executive has pocketed a $405,739 severance payment in the past year. Goff has queried the "exceptional" payout with the Auditor-General after getting an assurance from Town it was appropriate.

Deputy finance committee chairwoman Desley Simpson said $42m over budget on staff costs is not acceptable, certainly not to ratepayers.

"We have got to break the cycle of unbudgeted money going out the door," she said.

By the numbers

- total staff numbers for Auckland Council and six CCOs

2322 - number of staff earning more than $100,000

194 - number of staff earning more than $200,000(155 last year)

$853m - actual wages bill

$811m - budgeted wages bill

$18m - staff payments for errors in the Holidays Act

$11m - unbudgeted cost of redundancies


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« Reply #1 on: October 06, 2017, 06:31:20 pm »

...typical socialists...while sewage is spewing into the sea Goff looks for a new stadium to build with his name on it🙄

Extraordinary rain causes extraordinary sewage overflows for Auckland in year of Tasman Tempest and Cyclone Debbie
The extensive wet weather in Auckland this year has caused more stormwater overflows than the past two years combined.
The extensive wet weather in Auckland this year has caused more stormwater overflows than the past two years combined.

Auckland has had two years' worth of sewage overflow into its natural environment after the worst rainfall in a decade.

A pungent mix of raw sewage and stormwater from areas of the city served by a century-old sewerage system is pushed out to sea when it overflows during periods of heavy rain.

In the year to July 2017, a period including Cyclone Debbie and the Tasman Tempest, there were more than 373 overflows more than the previous two years combined.

Auckland's combined sewer system overflows into creeks and the ocean when it is overwhelmed by wet weather.
Auckland's combined sewer system overflows into creeks and the ocean when it is overwhelmed by wet weather.

The Auckland Regional Public Health Service is now investigating "moderate" rises in some types of gastroenteritis, and their links to the overflows.

* Sewage spews into Auckland harbour; Watercare to investigate illegal downpipes
* Auckland bay's swimming in sewage and tampons
* Auckland Council warns swimmers to avoid beaches after latest downpour


Areas in pink are served by a combined sewerage network and represent two per cent of Auckland's wastewater network.
Areas in pink are served by a combined sewerage network and represent two per cent of Auckland's wastewater network.

Mayor Phil Goff said concerns about the overflows had prompted him to launch real-time water monitoring of Auckland's beaches.

The overflows of sewage-infused stormwater into the Manukau and Waitemata Harbours are a legacy of Auckland's combined sewer system.

Developed in the 1900s, it sends stormwater and sewerage down the same pipe in a patchwork of older Auckland suburbs from Blockhouse Bay through to Three Kings and Remuera.

This wastewater is "diluted" by stormwater, Watercare network manage Anin Nama said.

"Because it's heavily diluted, the environment can assimilate some of that diluted wastewater over time.

"I've got more sympathy for those people that have water courses going through their property and that's what we're trying to address."

Charlotte Fisher from Westmere with rubbish collected from combined spills at Cox's Bay and Okahu Bay, including tampons ...

Wastewater biologist Gemma Allen Tolich said the overflows increase, rather than dilute, the concentration of sewage in beaches and streams.

E.coli samples taken during an overflow in 2010 at Meola Creek detected the sorts of figures that would be found in raw sewage entering provincial wastewater treatment plants, Tolich said.


Only 16,000 households, or two per cent of Auckland's wastewater network, use a combined sewer system. 

Responsibility for separating the system and installing new stormwater pipes rests with Auckland Council.

By 2021, 688 properties will have their stormwater and wastewater separated, Watercare stakeholder liaison Brent Evans said.

Watercare's $926m Central interceptor, a huge pipe that runs from Western Springs right through the city, will also transport 80 per cent of the unseparated sewage and stormwater to its Mangere Treatment Plant when it is completed in 2026.

Evans said overflows on private property were a bigger issue from a public safety point of view and that was what happened on parts of the network that weren't separated.

"If separation was the answer we would do nothing else but separate all the properties."

Ian Seward found his house flooded with tampons and sewage in April after a manhole overflowed.

Watercare said that was caused by a number of people who had illegally connected their stormwater to their wastewater.

Each household that did that displaced the wastewater of 40 others, Evans said.

"Now if Auckland Council says 'we're not going to invest adequately in stormwater', what that means is we're left trying to deal with it

Auckland had an entire year's worth of rainfall in the year to September, Metservice meteorologist Georgina Griffith said.

"We've had wetter years but this year's probably been the worst we've had for a decade or so."

Evans said with $2.8bn of infrastructure works in the pipeline for the next 10 years, it would be wasteful to design for "outlier" years like 2017.

"We'd be investing way before we actually needed to, just to deal with extreme events.

"We want to take the stormwater out of the wastewater network, not encourage bigger pipes to accommodate it."

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