26 Jan 2019

Goff: Revenue gap of $4.3b if fuel tax dumped

7:09 pm on 26 January 2019

Auckland's mayor is defending the regional fuel tax after new mayoralty candidate John Tamihere said Aucklanders have been unfairly taxed for petrol.

Phil Goff on the day he was elected Auckland mayor. 8 October 2016.

Phil Goff will announce his mayoralty intentions in six weeks. Photo: RNZ / Diego Opatowski

John Tamihere

John Tamihere Photo: Twitter

Mr Tamihere, a former Labour minister, said that the government was not doing enough for Auckland and he wanted to change that.

He will run along side the former National minister, Auckland mayor and current councillor, Christine Fletcher, in the October elections.

At an official announcement in West Auckland this morning, Mr Tamihere and Ms Fletcher hit out at Mr Goff, saying he was a poor leader for both the council and the city.

Aucklanders were paying more than they should with charges like "Goff's Gas Tax" (the regional fuel tax) as well as "stealth taxes" levied by the council, Mr Tamihere said.

Phil Goff said that the criticism was just part of politics in an election year.

"It's election year and people are going to make a lot of claims, that's simply politics. It's interesting to see that he's attacking the regional fuel tax but his running mate was in favour of it, so they'll have to work that one out," Mr Goff said.

"Before anybody criticises a form of revenue, they've got to say how they'd fill the revenue gap of $4.3 billion if they were to do away with it, and if you don't do that there's a real question of credibility."

He said he was still weighing up whether to run for the mayoralty and would announce his decision in the next six weeks.

"I'll spend this campaign, if I decide to run for this mayoralty, in a totally positive way looking at what we've done and what we need to do to make this city a better place for all of us, not criticising other candidates for their ideas."

Mr Goff indicated last year he was enjoying the job of mayor and believed he still had work to do.

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