Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee says dealing with Christchurch City Council is becoming very frustrating.
Mr Brownlee says reported comments from Mayor Bob Parker that the Canterbury Earthquake Authority could direct the council to raise rates or sell assets to cover costs are simply untrue.
He says there seems to be little respect for the huge effort that central Government is putting into the earthquake recovery in Canterbury.
The Christchurch Mail newspaper has quoted Mr Brownlee as describing Bob Parker as a clown but the minister says that comment was made in the context of the height of council infighting over a $68,000 payrise given to the chief executive.
And Mr Brownlee has revealed that the council wanted him to exempt Orion from monopoly controls, so the company could increase its power bills to pay for repairs.
He says the council tried to pressure him to pass an Order in Council under the earthquake emergency laws.
Mr Parker is going to China for a promotional visit and was not available for an interview.