not a technocrat. I may believe in commerce and trade, but I also believe
in social responsibility. Its part of what we do at
the Medinge Group.
In fact, I believe in it so much, I co-wrote a book
on it, Beyond
Branding. And a second book I wrote has this message at its core.
In the last 25 years, weve been selling off the
cream of public assets to foreigners. And Im not happy about that.
Look at the power sector (incidentally, did you know
the remnants of our old Municipal Electricity Department was sold in the
last term?). What efficiencies have actually been gained in the last quarter-century
with technocratic policies?
We are basically left with a bunch of cartels charging
what they like.
There must be a balance between public and private.
Lets be sensible rather than get suckered in by ideologies.
But one pledge I will make to Wellingtonians is this:
no water privatization.
Its ours, and itll stay ours.
Are you any happier with electricity in private
hands? Its a simple question. Most Kiwis say we are not. Water is
a necessity and, during my term, it will not be privatized.
Even though I oppose water metering, I support educating people
about conservation. Ive remained in touch with my contacts
from the UNEP on water projects. And I support putting collective
water usage data online, so people and groups can find innovative
ways to monitor themselves.
We are still wasting water, as a city. Under my term, well
work with firms to upgrade and modernize our facilities. Wellington
has a pretty appalling 21 per cent leakage ratewe can fix
this without resorting to selling off yet another asset.