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Source: Taxpayers Union

The New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union is slamming Waikato Regional Council’s $8.8 million beautification of its chamber.Union spokesman Louis Houlbrooke says, “The Council chairman boasts that the budget ‘only’ blew out by $50,000. That’s a distraction from the real issue: the fact the overall budget was $8.8 million in the first place. That’s obscene.”“The Chairman complained that before renovation the chamber looked like a badminton hall and had ‘no style’. Diddums. Self-important regional councillors might think they’re entitled to more extravagant surroundings, but most ratepayers will never see the inside of this building. Ratepayers expect water infrastructure and waste management, not a royal chamber for provincial princesses.”“Because the Council doesn’t own the building, the $3.1 million spent on building works won’t even be reclaimed at sale down the line. From a ratepayer perspective, this money may as well have been tossed in the river.”“Incredibly, the Regional Council is now asking taxpayers across the country for help with its ‘shovel-ready’ projects. The Government may want to think twice before giving Waikato Regional Council a handout.”