Boult signals Auckland Airport challenge to Q’town decisions [Crux, 25/02/20]

Mayor Jim Boult issued a stark warning to councillors today that moves to limit Queenstown airport growth could be challenged by Auckland airport as a minority shareholder.

Mayor Boult added that the council would be “walking a dangerous path” in providing too much direction to the Queenstown Airport Corporation.

council vote wide MR

Boult was speaking as councillors voted to submit their formal expectations to the Airport Corporation and give the airport board an extra month to prepare their all-important Statement of Intent.

Councillors voted to submit their formal expectations document to the Queenstown Airport Corporation.

Members of various anti-airport lobby groups took full advantage of today’s extraordinary council meeting to make their views heard during the public forum section of the meeting.

David Mayhew, speaking on behalf of the Kelvin Peninsula Community Association, said that the Queenstown Airport Corporation (QAC) did not understand the concept of a community social licence.

“So far QAC has demonstrated  no ability or appetite to respect the social licence when it conflicts with the demands of the air travel industry. It is not QAC’s licence to play with.”

He went on to tell councillors “The fundamental problem is that QAC does not see itself as a community owned utility whose function is to serve that community. Rather it sees itself as a business whose customers are airlines demanding landing slots and who care nothing of the impact on the host community.”

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