2 Apr 2014

Helicopter trust loses court bid

7:01 pm on 2 April 2014

The High Court has rejected a bid by the Auckland Rescue Helicopter Trust to get a cut to its funding reviewed.

Auckland Rescue Helicopter.

Photo: PHOTO NZ

The trust sued the council's Auckland Regional Amenities Funding Board after it cut the trust's ratepayer funding from $1.5 million to $900,000.

The board said the cut was because the trust was already doing well financially and did not need the extra money.

Auckland mayor Len Brown has already ordered a review of the funding board and pledged to restore the helicopter's funding.

However, in a decision on Wednesday, Justice Thomas said the funding board did not act outside the law by cutting funding, nor was it substantively unfair or irrational.

Board chairperson Vern Walsh said he is pleased with the decision as it means no more ratepayer money is likely to be spent defending its actions.

"It vindicates the board - they're a very, very professional bunch of people: independent, who are very, very careful to ensure that they do a job according to the mandate that has been set for them."