15 Sep 2009

Super-city backdown 'victory for common sense'

5:35 am on 15 September 2009

The Auckland Regional Council chair says the Government's decision to leave the entire Rodney district in the super-city is a victory for common sense and for Auckland.

Under proposed changes, the northern boundary for Auckland would have moved south, cutting Rodney in half and excluding Warkworth and Wellsford from the super-city.

But the Government backed down on that on Monday, and Rodney district is back in. Prime Minister John Key said after Monday's Cabinet meeting that the change of heart was made in response to the concerns of local people.

ARC chair Mike Lee says he's not surprised at the move, given the huge groundswell of opposition. The proposed changes would not have strengthened Auckland, in his view.

Franklin district still split

The Rodney district mayor, Penny Webster, told Checkpoint that the original proposal came out of left field and she's delighted the Government has changed its mind.

The southern boundary remains as recommended by the select committee on Auckland governance, however, thus splitting the Franklin district.