Bernard Orsman

Bernard Orsman is Super City reporter for the NZ Herald.

$10.5m to bring V8s to Auckland

Auckland Mayor Len Brown has said a committee will consider a recommendation. Photo / Natalie Slade
Auckland Mayor Len Brown has said a committee will consider a recommendation. Photo / Natalie Slade

The Auckland Council has released a council report on the V8 car race - more than 12 hours after Mayor Len Brown issued a press release on the issue minus the details.

In the press release Mr Brown said the council's strategy and finance committee will consider a recommendation to pour $10.5 million of ratepayers' money into bringing the V8 Supercars to Pukekohe.

But details of the proposal have been slow to be made public - and do include a full risk review.

Last night, Mr Brown's office could not produce a copy of the report and when the committee agenda was put up on the council website, it said "this report was unavailable at the time the agenda went to print and will be circulated under separate cover".

In his press release, a bullish Mr Brown was confident of receiving council backing for the event, which he claimed would produce a return on investment at more than $7 million.

Last October, Audit New Zealand issued a damning review of the processes involved in the V8 Supercars event in Hamilton, blaming council management - including former Hamilton City Council chief executive Michael Redman and his deputy Blair Bowcott - for poor reporting, spending millions of dollars without authorisation and keeping the council in the dark over significant issues.

The review led Mr Redman to quit as chief executive of Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development - the public body that has been working on bringing the V8s back to Auckland. Its deliberations have been held in secret.

The loss-making V8 street race series in Hamilton was been cited in March in a shake-up of local government by the Government as the kind of risky commercial ventures that councils should not undertake.

- NZ Herald

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