Revealed: ATEED’s $175,000 tennis splurge a backspin on ratepayers
Today we have released information obtained under the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act showing that some $175,000 of ratepayer money has been used to subsidise the ASB Classic.
Auckland Council’s decision to fund the ASB Classic through its economic development arm ATEED is an outrageous use of ratepayers’ money. The ASB Classic has been hugely successful in recent years, with plenty of media coverage. Why can’t the large profitable bank with its name on the event pay for the event? Auckland Ratepayers are being ripped off.
In response to our information request, Auckland Council sung the praises of the ASB Classic, describing its economic impact on the Auckland region. If it’s so successful, why does it need any financial help from Auckland ratepayers? Next year the ASB Classic should stand on its own two feet.
On the general issue of local government funding of sports events, Jordan Williams, spokesperson for the New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union adds, "Across the country local government tourism agencies are splashing the cash on events and sponsorship of questionable value. Although councils claim the money is essential for economic development, whenever our researchers have asked for disciplined cost benefit economic analysis council have been found wanting. In our opinion, ratepayers deserve better than that."