7 Dec 2010

Auckland CCO directors chosen

1:37 pm on 7 December 2010

The new Auckland Council has appointed directors to the boards of its six council controlled organisations (CCOs).

The Government had made the majority of appointments to the boards earlier, and Monday's announcements fill the balance.

The council concedes it has made the appointments within a tight time frame, but say the directors, who are all well-known political and business people, have the necessary skills and experience.

Former Labour party president Mike Williams will be a director of Auckland Transport while current Telstra Clear Pacific chief executive, Richard Jeffrey, will be a director of Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development.

And Brian Corban, who has served on a number of boards including Genesis Energy, has been appointed to Auckland Council Investments.

Mayor Len Brown says he is keen to establish the CCOs, and hopes the new directors will get up and running as soon as possible.

Auckland Council's strategy and appointments subcommittee met on Monday to determine the directorships.

Call for open debate

The meeting was closed to the public much to the chagrin of a councillor, Jami-Lee Ross, who says the process should be open and transparent.

His other subcommittee members disagreed, however, saying they would feel uncomfortable about publicly engaging in full and frank discussion about each applicant's attributes.

Mr Ross, from the Citizens and Ratepayers group said mayor Len Brown presented the strategy and appointments subcommittee with a 'take it or leave it' list of candidates.

As a consequence, he says, he can't have confidence that those are the best people for the job, and he believes the wider council should have been involved in the process.

Leading local government academic Peter McKinley says, however, that those chosen appear to have the credentials for the jobs.

List of appointments

The additional board appointments are:

Waterfront Development Agency: Evan Davies, Christine Caughey.

Auckland Council Property: Neil Barr, Leigh Auton.

Regional Facilities Auckland: John Robertson, John Avery, Gary Troup

Auckland Transport: Mike Williams

Auckland Council Investments: Brian Corban, Pauline Winter

Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development: Franceska Banga,

Richard Jeffery

Leak being investigated

Earlier, the mayor launched an investigation into how a shortlist of candidates was leaked.

Mr Brown says he is treating the matter as very serious and the investigation will take some time.