Airport shares and a pair of ministers in the spotlight

Welcome to The Spinoff’s live updates for June 8. Today: Ministers Michael Wood and Jan Tinetti face ongoing scrutiny, while Toby Manhire is live at Auckland Council as mayor Wayne Brown’s budget goes up for a vote. 

Get in touch on

The agenda

  • Now: Auckland Council votes on mayor Wayne Brown’s budget.

Airport shares and a pair of ministers in the spotlight

Welcome to The Spinoff’s live updates for June 8. Today: Ministers Michael Wood and Jan Tinetti face ongoing scrutiny, while Toby Manhire is live at Auckland Council as mayor Wayne Brown’s budget goes up for a vote. 

Get in touch on

The agenda

  • Now: Auckland Council votes on mayor Wayne Brown’s budget.
Jun 8 2023

No decision on Auckland Council budget 3.0 today

Mayor Wayne Brown chairs a meeting of the Auckland Council governing body. Photo: Toby Manhire

There will be no decision on Auckland Council’s budget tonight.

Mayor Wayne Brown – who just said he “cannot tell the future” and that debate could potentially drag on into next week – has suggested an overnight adjournment so councillors can consider potential amendments.

Today has seen Brown water down his initial budget proposal after failing to win over councillors on a complete sale of the council’s airport shares. Instead, it’s now proposed that a partial share sale would take place – 8.09% – leaving a smaller budget hole that would be filled via slightly higher rates and some cuts to local board spending.

As councillors prepared to wrap up for the night, Brown said it had been a good, but at times “stressful”, day.

From 10am tomorrow, the action at the town hall continues.

Uber granted leave to appeal in employment law case

Image: Toby Morris/Tina Tiller

Uber has been granted leave to appeal the October 2022 decision that its local drivers are employees, not contractors. The decision means that the case will go to court again. “While we are pleased to have been granted leave to appeal and make our case to the appellate court, it’s our view that industry-wide standards and better protections for Kiwi gig workers should be enacted through legislation,” said Emma Foley, general manager of Uber New Zealand, in a PR-distributed statement.

The decision “is not an unexpected development and will allow the unions taking the case to cement the original Employment Court ruling”, said FIRST Union, as reported by TVNZ’s John Campbell.

The original October 2022 decision was hailed as a landmark ruling, with plaintiffs arguing that they were in an employment relationship with Uber, rather than independently operating contractors. Uber drivers in other countries, including Canada and the UK have been recognised as workers and given the right to form a union. In Sweden, Uber drivers went on strike earlier this year

Chris Luxon encourages people to have more babies – to provide workers

Christopher Luxon identifies another shortcoming in the budget. Photo: Hagen Hopkins/Getty

National Party leader made a “tongue in cheek” comment about New Zealand’s birth rate falling below replacement levels at an infrastructure conference today. “Here is the deal – New Zealand stopped replacing itself in 2016. I encourage all of you to go out there and have more babies if you wish, that would be helpful,” he said, according to a Stuff report.

New Zealand’s birthrate is at record low levels, as people delay starting their families; projections say that there will be 30,000 fewer children in the school system in the next decade. The fertility rate has fallen to less than the replacement rate, meaning a deficit of workers needs to be made up with incoming immigration.

As Luxon went on to point out, reversing birth trends is a complex challenge for economies around the world; for instance, despite cash bonuses and support for fertility treatment, South Korea’s birth rate has dropped 4.4% in the last year, following a long-term trend.

In New Zealand there are a range of policies in place to encourage people to have children; the latest budget included an extension of state-funded childcare, and Working for Families tax credits are provided to people supporting children under the age of 18 while working.

Writing in her Substack newsletter, Project Gender’s Erin Jackson said Luxon’s comments failed to acknowledge “the importance of reproductive autonomy and personal choice for women”. “Emphasising childbirth as a duty (have more babies!) not only disregards individual choices but also perpetuates the historical narrative of women’s primary purpose being childbearing,” Jackson wrote.

Michael Wood’s Auckland Airport shares have been sold

Michael Wood (Photo: Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images)

The Auckland Airport shares at the centre of the saga that led to Michael Wood being stood down as transport minister have been sold, he told parliament this afternoon.

“I have acknowledged, and will acknowledge again, it was a serious error on my part,” Wood said. “As of today, I have taken action on that in selling the shares.”

The shares were sold for around $16,400 and the proceeds will be donated to Anglican Trust for Women and Children, he added.

Earlier today, parliament’s registrar launched an inquiry into Wood’s failure to properly disclose the shares, after it was yesterday revealed he’d been asked to get rid of them 12 times.

Asian New Zealanders the target of nearly a third of hate crimes

A march for Victims of the Christchurch Mosque attacks in Duesseldorf. (Photo by Maja Hitij/Getty Images)

Asian New Zealanders were the targets of more than 2,000 hate crimes recorded since January 2022, new data from the police, released to the Guardian through an OIA request, shows.

Nearly 7,000 total crimes were recorded. Additionally, people from southwest Asia and Africa were the target of hate crimes at a much higher rate than their representation in the overall population.

Of the hate crimes targeting religious groups, more than 200 were directed towards Muslims; compared to 30 directed towards Jewish people and 27 to Christians. While 7% of the overall hate crimes recorded occurred online, the majority were in person, often in residential or public spaces.

Gender and sexual minorities were also the target of hate crimes; 561 offences were directed at gay or lesbian people, and 95 at other genders, including transgender people. 142 hate crimes were directed at women; only 10 were directed at men, although in some instances this information has not been recorded.

Wayne Brown returns to council with third budget proposal

Before breaking to prepare a third version of the budget, Brown brandished a Kit-Kat-, saying, 
‘someone’s saying times like these you need a Kit-Kat. I don’t eat chocolate, someone else can have a sugar fix.’

“I have reflected on all the points raised by the councillors in our round robin table discussion before the break, which I found to be most useful and helpful, thank you.” That’s how the new, conciliatory Wayne Brown has reopened proceedings at the Auckland Town Hall today, following short speeches (see our summary here) from the 20 councillors. He has presented a new proposal, seconded by deputy mayor Desley Simpson, for debate, saying he’d “compromised on every lever” so “please take this proposal seriously”.

Brown’s budget 3.0 includes a partial sale of Auckland Airport shares. Selling just less than half of the council holding, 8.09%, would bring in around a billion, saving $28m in interest costs across the year, he said, and $130m across the longterm plan. That leaves a further $132m to fill the budget gap. His plan? Nudge up the increase in rates from 6.7% to 7.7% and reinstate $4m of cuts to local board spending and require the council CEO to find another $5m in cuts.  He would not move on borrowing, saying, “debt is the essence of financial mismanagement”.

Brown said: “I believe this proposal is the best, prudent, achievable, balanced budget for Aucklanders.” The meeting has now taken a short break for councillors to look at the new plan, after which a debate of the governing body will commence. Councillors will then be able to table amendments. Some have voiced concern that they are not being given sufficient time to assess the revised draft.

Before breaking to prepare a third version of the budget, Brown brandished a Kit-Kat-, saying,
‘someone’s saying times like these you need a Kit-Kat. I don’t eat chocolate, someone else can have a sugar fix.’

As Brown breaks to draft ‘latest iteration’ of budget plan, here’s what councillors said

Auckland Council governing body.

After hearing from all 20 councillors over the last couple of hours, Wayne Brown says he’ll this afternoon present the “latest iteration of a moving feast”. That follows the council moving into “open workshop” mode after a brief squabble around standing orders. What did they all say? Please strap in and I’ll try to summarise as succinctly as possible. Opening the five-minute-apiece round, Councillor Andy Baker (Franklin) said he was “uncomfortable borrowing money to keep the doors open”, citing his personal divestment of bonus bonds as evidence that he is “not afraid to sell underperforming assets”. He said he was pro the airport share sale, to a smattering of boos and applause from the public. 

Alf Filipaina (Manukau) said he would “listen to my colleagues around this table” before “finalising my position”. Angela Dalton (​Manurewa-Papakura) said while there was a need for cuts, “this is not the time to sell the car to buy the petrol.” Lotu Fuli (Manukau) said she was of a similar mind. She questioned whether the airport holding could be called an “underperforming asset”, citing a television appearance by New Zealand’s most swashbuckling economic commentator. “I agree with Bernard Hickey,” she said, warning against a short-termism. 

The Auckland Council governing body meets. Photo: Toby Manhire

Chris Darby (North Shore) said he welcomed the “refinement” in the revised budget, to laughter from the mayor. He said he was “generally supportive” of the revised cuts, calling them a “big reversal” – this time to a shake of the head from Brown. Darby argued there was some room for manoeuvre on both rates and borrowing; on the airport he said he would back a partial sale, of around half a million, which would represent about a quarter of the holding. 

Jo Bartley (​Maungakiekie-Tāmaki) said councillors had been “held to ransom” in being asked to back the asset sale in order to retain local services. She opposed the sale of airport shares, but said there was room to look further at asset sales across the board. She backed the rates and cuts options, calling for more borrowing. 

“I think we need to go higher on rates,” said Shane Henderson (​Waitākere), suggesting a further percentage point. He was opposed to going much further on borrowing. On the airport share sale, he said that in keeping with the broad view in his ward, a partial sale was a good “compromise position”. Greg Sayers (Rodney) noted that 53% of Aucklanders, according to the council-commissioned survey, supported full or partial sale of airport shares. He backed the full sale of the airport shareholding as part of a “band-aid budget” for “financial haemorrhaging”. 

Richard Hills (North Shore) said his chief concern had been the cuts, and even with the revised budget there were too many of those, including on council staff. He said the “hard decisions” on the alternative levers should be made with that in mind. Hills did not make a commitment on the share sale but he did invoke once again lofty talisman Bernard Hickey. John Watson (Albany) said selling the shares was the “easy option” and amounted to a “sugar hit”, where the council needed to first undertake its longterm financial review. He said the mayor’s decision to present airport share sales and council services as a direct trade-off  was “distasteful and misleading – it hasn’t helped matters in trying to come up with a balanced, interim budget”. “I agree with everything he said,” said John Watson’s Albany ward-mate Wayne Walker

Maurice Williamson (Howick, needs to deworm his cat) said his priority was keeping rate rises to within inflation. He added a bit of excitement to the room by projecting an animated “four circles” venn diagram, with an arrow pointing to the “solution space”. He made no reference to Bernard Hickey but did make a reference to the 1960s British beat group The Tremeloes and told an Irish joke.

Mayor Wayne Brown chairs a meeting of the Auckland Council governing body.

“If the rates go up any more, it’s tipping people over the edge,” Sharon Stewart (​Howick) said. She would not be deciding how to vote until the debate proper was complete. Mike Lee (​Waitematā and Gulf) said the revised budget was “by and large acceptable to me”, but the airport share sale “is not”. He noted that Brown had not campaigned on an asset sale, and that local boards had not “buckled” but “stuck to their principles”. It had been a mistake, he added, for the government to sell the BNZ and electricity companies, to applause from the public. 

Christine Fletcher (​Albert-Eden-Puketāpapa) said she did not want to sell the airport shares; that should be saved for the longterm plan. “But,” she said, “I know we need to land a budget today.” In that spirit she backed Darby’s suggestion of selling a part of the airport holding, but added: “continuing to flog off assets just defers the day of judgment”. 

Though he supported the full share sale, Daniel Newman (​Manurewa-Papakura) said that listening to the contributions so far he suspected “we are going to be talking about a compromise”. He welcomed the reversal on many rates cuts. Ken Turner (​Waitākere) said, “we aren’t in a strapped for cash situation, we’re in a productivity deficit”. He was unconvinced whether the share sale was the answer – “a $2 billion plug to fill a $350 million hole”.

Julie Fairey (​Albert-Eden-Puketāpapa) said: “I have been interested in how we close the gap sustainably over time and the most responsible and honest way to do that is through a larger rate increase.” She said she was unlikely to move an amendment to that effect given an apparent lack of support around the table. She urged councillors not to underestimate the value of the shares to the council. She was disinclined to sell any shares but would reserve her decision until the end of the debate. Kerrin Leoni (​Whau) had “huge concerns” about the original budget so welcomed the changes. “I agree with this budget except for the sale of the airport shares, either full or partial.” She also opposed cuts to ECE services. Leoni said further borrowing was the better option. 

Finally, Desley Simpson (​Ōrākei, not the mayor but you’d be forgiven for thinking that) loved it. The revised budget, she said, had “pretty much settled on as good as it gets”. The airport share sale needed to be part of the solution, she argued, but “I feel for you”, she said, passing the floor to the mayor. Brown said he’d go off for lunch to “consider the inputs I’ve heard and whether any changes are required to the budget I’ve put up.”

Crown accounts deficit already worse than forecast a month ago

Grant Robertson and his 2023 budget (Photo supplied, additional design by Tina Tiller)

The Crown accounts are already $1.3bn worse off than what was predicted in the budget in May due to a shortfall in tax revenues.

For the 10 months to the end of April, the Operating Balance before Gains and Losses (Obegal) recorded a deficit of $7bn – $1.3bn higher than forecast in the budget on May 18. The deficit came from core Crown tax revenue being $1.4bn below forecast, “as lower corporate profits more than offset a rise in the number of people in work”, said finance minister Grant Robertson in a statement.

“2023 was always going to be a difficult and testing year, with global growth slowing, and inflation staying higher for longer than expected,” said Robertson. “The government’s books are not immune to a cooling economy.”

Despite this, New Zealand was “well placed to face the challenges of living costs, recent extreme weather and a subdued global economy”, he said, adding that the deficit was significantly smaller than it was at the same time a year ago.

Live: Jan Tinetti appears before privileges committee

Jan Tinetti speaks to reporters (Getty Images)

The education minister Jan Tinetti is facing questions today over the time it took for her to correct a misleading statement related to school attendance data.

Tinetti has been brought before the privileges committee – the first time in 15 years that an MP has faced questioning by this committee. You can tune into the livestream here. And if have no idea what’s going on, I recommend our explainer on Jan Tinetti and the privileges committee.

In an opening address before the committee, Tinetti said that upholding the integrity of parliament was of the “utmost importance” and said she had made an “incorrect judgment” about whether or not she needed to correct a previous statement. “I regret that decision,” she said.

She continued: “I accept that I should have corrected my answer in the house earlier. I regret this error of judgment but wish to underline to the committee that there was no intention to mislead the house.”

Tinetti said her original answer was made during the first question time of the year – her first as education minister. She was subsequently informed her office had been involved in the release of the data, but chose not to correct her response.

Investigation into Michael Wood’s airport shares disclosure opened

Michael Wood not listening (Image: Anna Rawhiti-Connell)

In a week of headaches for the government and Chris Hipkins, a full blown migraine: an investigation into suspended transport minister Michael Wood’s shares in Auckland Airport has been launched.

In a statement, parliament’s registrar Sir Maarten Wevers said he had received a letter from National MP Chris Penk requesting an inquiry into whether Wood had complied with his obligations to declare certain interests (that meaning the $13,000 in airport shares).

“The registrar’s preliminary review also took account of the degree of importance of the matter under inquiry; whether the matter may involve a breach of the obligations to make a return; and whether the matter is technical or trivial,” said the statement.

“Having conducted a preliminary review of the request, the registrar has determined that an inquiry is warranted and will be undertaken.”

It was revealed yesterday that Wood had been asked 12 times between 2020 and March this year to get rid of his shares. Despite saying he was in the process of doing so, he never did – something he has provided limited justifications for thus far. National has doubled down on its calls for Wood to be sacked, saying the minister was asked in 2021 whether he had additional pecuniary interests to disclose beyond those on the register of interests. His reply was “none”.

Michael Wood and Chris Hipkins (Image: Anna Rawhiti-Connell)

‘I want to do this differently’ – Mayor Brown says he may amend budget proposal

Auckland mayor Wayne Brown in a 30-minute presentation to Auckland Transport’s board (Photo: Todd Niall/Stuff)

Opening the debate on the budget proposal, Wayne Brown has adopted a conciliatory tone, saying he wants to “do this differently”. He has invited each of the 20 councillors to speak for five minutes. Following that round of the table he will consider whether to amend his proposal, he said. The mayor reiterated that it was important “not to rush” the process, and that proceedings may flow into next week. 

He urged councillors against “kicking a bigger budget-hole-can down the street for our children and their children”, adding that he “respect[s] that there are different points of view around the table”.

Local boards oppose airport share sale

Despite Brown earlier suggesting that funding for Auckland’s local boards was contingent on a sale of the airport shares, 12 of the 21 boards oppose selling the council’s holding, councillors have been told. Four support the proposal, three back a partial sale of the shares and two had “mixed views”.

Councillor Greg Sayers said that a survey of his Rodney constituents suggested 66% backed a sale of the shares. Lotu Fuli, a councillor representing the Manukau ward, urged her colleagues to “cast an equity lens” on any decision making, and noted the origin of the shareholding. South Aucklanders were “mindful of the legacy that was left by the former Manukau City Council and all that that means to them”, she said. 


Air NZ and Qantas unite against planned Auckland Airport upgrade

An Air Zealand plane after it landed at Sydney International Airport (Photo by James D. Morgan/Getty Images)

It’s a stressful day to be Auckland Airport. Not only is the council currently deciding whether to ditch its shareholding, but the two biggest customers – Air New Zealand and Qantas – have joined forces to oppose a planned upgrade.

In a statement, the two airlines said a rethink was needed on the proposed redevelopment of Auckland Airport.

“We all agree that some investment in Auckland Airport is necessary,” said Air New Zealand chief Greg Foran. “However, this is an enormous spend over a short period of time that adds almost no additional capacity. All it is expected to result in is more costs for everyone who uses, relies on, or passes through the airport, including the aviation industry, the tourism industry, the whole economy, and Air New Zealand’s passengers.”

Qantas boss Alan Joyce agreed: “Based on Qantas’ experience, the necessary first phase of this redevelopment could be delivered for significantly less than $3.9 billion, and we’re conscious that the final number will probably be higher, with cost overruns common to most large infrastructure projects.”

The $3.9 billion airport upgrade was planned to see the replacement of the existing domestic terminal and a shortened commute across to the international terminal. As RNZ reported in March, it would also include additional retail and rest areas, a new “state-of-the-art” check-in area, and a smart baggage system.

Whether any of this will now happen hangs in the balance. As I said at the top: today is a stressful day to be Auckland Airport.

Auckland councillors with airport shares say they’re not conflicted out

The Auckland Council governing body meets. Photo: Toby Manhire

Three of Auckland’s 20 councillors who have shareholdings in Auckland airport have made statements to the governing body meeting ahead of today’s critical vote on whether to sell the council’s shareholding. Julie Fairey told the meeting her holding was via her spouse and in a family trust. She said that her spouse’s shares were being divested – a saga familiar to anyone following the news: her spouse is cabinet minister Michael Wood, who has told the Cabinet Office he’s getting rid of the shares 12 times – while the remainder were in a managed fund. She had been advised it did not constitute a conflict of interest.

Two further councillors who had previously acknowledged airport shareholdings gave personal statements, with both Wayne Walker, who was revealed this morning to hold a stonking $3 million in shares, and Chris Darby saying they’d been advised their stakes did not amount to “financial interests” and that they could participate in the forthcoming vote. 

The Auckland Council governing body meets. Photo: Toby Manhire

In response to a council inquiry, the Office of the Auditor General advised: “On the basis of the specialist advice the Council has received, you have formed the view that the elected members could not reasonably expect a financial gain or loss as a result of how the Council decides to deal with its AIAL [Auckland International Airport] shares. Accordingly, you do not consider that there is a relevant financial interest that would preclude participation. We accept that this is a reasonable position to take in the circumstances.”

Opening the meeting, Mayor Wayne Brown said he expected the meeting to run efficiently, but, “We won’t be rushing ahead, it may end up taking a couple of days.” He had earlier grinned broadly while taking a photo of the packed media benches. 


Wayne Brown is about to kick off a critical meeting for Auckland and his mayoralty

Wayne Brown is on his way. Photo: Toby Manhire

Good morning from the Auckland Town Hall, where a string of politicians admitting they own shares in Auckland Airport – most recently the other Wayne, Councillor Walker, to the tune of a cool $3m – provides the pre-match entertainment for the most keenly observed meeting of Auckland Council’s governing body for some time. Councillor Maurice Williamson is leading the banter, noting multi-millionaire Walker’s empty seat and suggesting he might be found “at the Ritz Carlton”. When Walker arrived at the circular table, Williamson appealed, “I wonder if I couldn’t get a little loan. I’m short on the mortgage this month. You know, you’ve always been my best friend.” He also hopes the meeting doesn’t run late because he needs to “deworm the cat”. 

The 10am meeting will decide the fate of the revised budget put forward by Wayne Brown, as well as the efficacy of the mayor’s bulldozer approach, with the spotlight over the last week on the proposed sale of Auckland airport shares.

The decision appears to hang in the balance, with opponents of a sale finding themselves publicly chastised by Brown. If the sale of the full shareholding, worth around $2bn is unsuccessful, the mayor may instead move a partial sale. The council needs to agree a mix of some or all of rates increases, asset sales, cuts and borrowing to address a $375m budget shortfall, which includes a $50m storm recovery fund. The overall council debt sits at about $11.7bn.

Wayne Brown is on his way. Photo: Toby Manhire

Henderson-Massey local board chair and former Labour minister Chris Carter told RNZ the meeting is “extraordinarily significant for the mayor’s political future because he’s rested everything on today’s vote and he seems to be obsessed with selling the airport shares. If he’s not successful in getting the support of 10 councillors today to do that then he’s suffered a huge political blow.”

Despite his caustic modus operandi, Brown has undoubtedly inherited a budget headache, and has not been entirely intransigent. In his revised budget plan, unveiled in a messy briefing before a select audience including media judged to be amenable, Brown relented on many of the cuts first proposed, with funding to local board services, social services and arts and culture largely restored. That “final” budget, which also includes a rates increase of 6.7%, mirroring inflation and the controversial sale of airport shares, is centrestage here at the Town Hall today.

Auckland councillor reveals multi-million dollar airport shareholding ahead of vote

Auckland International Airport (Photo: RNZ / Claire Eastham-Farrelly)

An Auckland councillor, who has been publicly named as against selling shares in the city’s international airport, has revealed today he’s the beneficiary of a $3 million stake in the company.

It comes just an hour before councillors will meet in central Auckland to vote on mayor Wayne Brown’s proposed budget that includes selling off the council’s 18% shareholding in the airport to help seal a financial hole.

Albany councillor Wayne Walker confirmed to the Herald that he and his family were beneficiaries due to the estate of his late father. He said he didn’t receive any income from the shares and had up to this point been working through advice as to whether he would be allowed to participate in today’s vote. He said he was able to, but would make a statement at the top of the vote. “That is the appropriate thing to do,” said Walker.

He’s the third councillor to admit a potential conflict of interest due to airport shares, following Julie Fairey (the partner of embattled minister Michael Wood) and Chris Darby.

The meeting starts at 10am.

The Bulletin: Political alliances among the freedom movement are splintering

You may need to take notes to keep track of this one but it’s a good read from Stuff’s Nadine Roberts on the wheels within wheels and fires within fires of the freedom movement. Just over four months out from the election, the alliances among some of the political parties that formed out of anti-Covid restrictions groups are splintering.

Destiny Church leader Brian Tamaki is looking to sue far-right media outlet Counterspin. Sue Grey, co-leader of Freedoms NZ with Tamaki (a coalition of five parties including Grey’s NZ Outdoor and Freedom party and Hannah Tamaki’s Vision New Zealand) announced her party would be carrying out an investigation into allegations made by Counterspin against Tamaki. Adding to the divisions, Canterbury businessman Leighton Baker announced he was forming the Leighton Baker party on Sunday creating fears he would split the freedom movement vote.

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Ministerial mishaps and an Auckland budget: A big Thursday in politics


Two major political stories come to a head today, while a third drags on for another day. The education minister Jan Tinetti appears before the privileges committee early this afternoon. She’ll be questioned over the time it took for her to correct a misleading statement made in the house. You can read all about that here and tune in at midday here.

Meanwhile, the Michael Wood saga continues into for another day. The Herald’s Thomas Coughlan has argued that Wood will be on his final warning but may survive the scandal, in part because the prime minister won’t want to see a senior minister dumped so close to the election. However, should any further revelations come to light, Chris Hipkins may have no choice but to give the opposition what it wants and sack Wood from all his cabinet portfolios.

It’s likely, as Coughlan noted, that Tinetti’s privileges committee appearance may provide a distraction from the Wood saga, at least for a day. Good news for Wood, but hardly good news for the government as one scandal is briefly pushed aside for another.

The Wood scandal was also leading Stuff this morning, with Luke Malpass providing similar analysis on the matter. His column also concluded that Hipkins will be wary of giving the opposition an election year “scalp”, but added that the prime minister “equally… cannot afford for this to drag on”.

As all of this Wellington drama continues to percolate, Auckland Council will today vote on its proposed budget. It’s been a big week for fans of reading the words “airport shares” and this morning’s 10am meeting and vote will see that continue. The share sale remains contentious around the council table and it seems as though mayor Wayne Brown may not have the votes for a total sale. Any stalemate could be resolved via a partial sale, which has more support.

I’d also recommend this tetchy interview with a pair of local board chairs from Morning Report today.

And there’s a lot more on the budget vote in today’s edition of The Bulletin. Happy reading.