Cull criticises chamber

Dunedin Mayor Dave Cull has hit back at the Otago Chamber of Commerce as being ''stuck in a smokestack industry time warp''.

He was commenting after the chamber criticised the Dunedin City Council's draft transport strategy, saying it pushed a ''questionable agenda'' of sustainability while ignoring major transport issues.

Mr Cull, in a post on his Facebook page yesterday, said: ''It must be of concern when our local chamber of commerce does not understand the legal requirements around what it is commenting on, does not read the draft it is commenting on and seems stuck in a smokestack industry time warp''.

''Is that really how Dunedin's business community want to be perceived?

''Chamber chief executive John Christie told the Otago Daily Times that while the mayor was entitled to his opinions, ''I don't think it is entirely accurate''.

He rejected the accusation the chamber was against sustainability.

''We are a progressive organisation that reflects a progressive business community ...

''I think we have a reasonably exciting and vibrant economic base which is in need of a few positive things.''

The mayor's comments exacerbated the issue as ''we have been trying to assist council to a better conclusion, a better strategy'', he said.

The chamber's submission was researched and prepared by a team of which submitter, Prof Herbert Harris, was just one member, Mr Christie said.

- hamish.mcneilly@odt.co.nz

 

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