While I generally agree with Brian Rudman – and he is certainly one of the Herald’s most thought provoking columnists – he doesn’t seem to understand that Labour politicians work with businesses in their electorates and get frustrated when jobs are exported – especially new economy jobs such as these which have gone to a French defence company.
Leading Auckland Labour Party politicians involved in the negotiations were also appalled with the comments, and that Mr Mallard had made no effort to check the facts with them.
I would be very very surprised if any politician had been involved in the commercial negotiations. It would be improper. The negotiations would have been conducted by officials from ARTA and NZTA.
He might have realised that he was the victim of a last-ditch PR campaign by Wellington-based Infratil, whose proposal had been found inferior by ARTA, ARC and Wellington government funding agencies.
I reiterate what I said in a comment on that post:
My source is someone who has enormous IT experience and was an early critic of the Police and INCIS. Remember it is IBM it must be best syndrome.
I did not discuss it with Infratil or any of their PR people.
As was clear in the very articulate debate between Jarbury and Tim Brown some people think it is important to develop and own the ticketing system and be responsible for all upgrades and others think this is not core business and it can be rented. Some people think the $10m+ plus spent to date on the bid process is good value for money and others think that knocking 20c off every fare in Auckland would have been a wiser spend. Some people think having something up for the RWC is a good idea and others think that 2012/13/14 is a better idea.
I’m not fan of all of that Infratil does. My view is that Labour should make it clear that it will reverse any Nact decisions to put schools into Infratils PPP arrangements.
However I’m not sure that we need to spend ratepayers or taxpayers funds on a system in Auckland when we haven’t had to in Wellington.