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Household analogies bubbled out of councillors who were deciding yesterday on what approach they should take on limiting council debt.
Cr Sophie Barker, who used the spa pool metaphor, said the city council should give itself the room to start with a wish list and then discuss how much of it could be afforded.
Cr Andrew Whiley said the council was not giving itself an open chequebook but maintaining options, because a lot of investment was needed in the next 10 years.
"We’re not buying a spa pool. We’re upgrading plumbing and doing electrical work."
Cr Steve Walker said not keeping up with maintenance made the accounts look wonderful, initially.
"But your fixtures and fittings will start failing and your house will start to crumble around you."
Cr Jules Radich suggested real households did not have the luxury of starting with a ‘‘blue-sky budget’’ and then removing things from it later.
Cr Lee Vandervis was appalled by his colleagues’ appetite for debt.
"This doesn’t just open the floodgates. It tears the floodgates off their hinges."