Len Brown: Councillors call for no-confidence vote

By Bernard Orsman, APNZ staff

Auckland Mayor Len Brown. Photo / Dean Purcell.
Auckland Mayor Len Brown. Photo / Dean Purcell.

Auckland Mayor Len Brown could face a vote of no-confidence tomorrow, with a quarter of the city's councillors proposing the motion.

One of the group, Dick Quax, released a statement to media this afternoon stating that a quarter of Auckland Councillors will attempt the motion of no-confidence at the Governing Body meeting at the Auckland Town Hall tomorrow morning.

The five councillors will propose the motion: That the Governing Body notes that Len Brown lacks the essential leadership credentials of judgement, honesty, integrity, and credibility and as a result councillors have lost confidence in his ability to carry out his duties as Mayor of Auckland.

The five councillors - Mr Quax, Linda Cooper, Cameron Brewer, Sharon Stewart, Denise Krum - have advised other councillors of their intentions and are confident more will come on board over the next 24 hours to support this stronger statement, Mr Quax said.

Meanwhile, Deputy Mayor Penny Hulse said councillors met during the lunch break to finalise the wording of a set of actions against Mr Brown at tomorrow's public meeting of the full council.

The actions include censuring the mayor, asking Mr Brown to meet some of the costs for a $100,000-plus review into his behaviour and clipping the wings of the mayoral office.

Protesters target Brown outside Town Hall

Earlier today TVNZ reported that Mayor Brown had been chased down the street by about 12 protesters, calling for his resignation.

"It's not okay to root in the mayoral office,'' "Where's your dignity?" and "Shame shame shame,'' the group chanted.

As the mayor was driven away the protesters ran after his car.

Herald editorial calls for Mayor to resign

Today the New Zealand Herald took the rare step of running our editorial on the front page.

In it, we called for Auckland Mayor Len Brown to stand down, after it was revealed he failed to declare free hotel rooms and upgrades.

"Tomorrow, Auckland councillors will not only formally censure Mr Brown but begin a process designed to clip the wings of the mayoral office. If that happens, the Super City may no longer have a leader with the independent authority to drive things forward. The only means of avoiding that outcome is for Mr Brown to resign. He must go in the interests of Auckland and Aucklanders."

Read the full Herald Editorial: 'It's time to go, Mayor Brown'

Brown's 'annus horribilis'

In an interview on 95bFM this morning Mr Brown repeated his previous assertion that his failure to declare $39,000 in free hotel rooms and upgrades was due to "a lack of clarity around the policy in terms of gift registry and declaration''.

"Secondly, I just didn't bring my mind to it clearly enough ... if you received an upgrade, or a complimentary [room], if it was over $300, then you should declare it.

"I've put my hand up to that and said `hey, you know we could have been much, much clearer and lucid around that and got better instruction and understanding.

"I was also thinking, 'hey, look this has nothing to do with the council, this has nothing to do with spending ratepayers' money'.

"I'm wiser in hindsight, well chastened and I suspect that it's just not me, there'd be many sitting around the council table who'll be thinking back on their declarations and wondering, 'hey, did I declare that upgrade in the aeroplane?'.''

Mr Brown said in reflection it had been "annus horribilis'' (a horrible year).

"Certainly the last few weeks have provided something of a reflection for me ... It's been really, really tough and not just in the public eye obviously, [but also] for us as a family, for me as a husband and a dad - it's been really difficult to confront that and that's where the damage has been most profound.''

He said he had been making a lot of apologies recently and was copping "a fair old whack around the ears''.

Video

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- APNZ

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