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Source: Taxpayers Union

Responding to Wellington City Council’s 14-1 vote to proceed with strengthening the central library, New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union spokesman Louis Houlbrooke says:“It’s appalling that a vocal minority of architectural elitists have so effectively captured Wellington City Council.” “With council revenues collapsing and rates set to increase by 5% during a literal pandemic, the Council needs to brutally cull its spending plans. Instead, it’s taken on a $200 million white elephant that will inevitably see cost blowouts and delays.” “The $200 million strengthening proposal will cost close to $2500 for every one of Wellington’s 81,000 households.” “In fact, it could cost even more. Wellington’s Town Hall closed for strengthening back in 2013. Seven years later, it’s still closed, and repair costs have ballooned from $43 million to $112 million. Councillors’ failure to learn from this experience means Wellingtonians are now stuck with another toilet for pigeons.” “Perhaps Councillors have a secret scheme to harvest guano from Wellington’s pigeon-infested heritage projects. But a clearer-headed plan would be to simply sell the building and land as is, using the revenue to provide immediate rates relief for struggling households.” “The existing pop-up library programme provides perfectly adequate services. Let’s stick with it – at least until the current financial crisis has passed.”