Green MP Chlöe Swarbrick says it is “mind blowing” that a 12-year contract could be awarded, considering how even the council’s own long-term plans extend for just a decade. Photo Benj Brooking

A $350 million contract awarded by Auckland Transport to Fullers 360 and funded by Auckland ratepayers has been called an “affront to democracy” by the Auckland Ratepayers’ Alliance. 

The Waiheke route is excluded from the contract to deliver ferry services on the Devonport, Half Moon Bay and Hobsonville routes for 12 years. The ferry company and Waiheke have had a tumultuous relationship and bringing Devonport into this new contract leaves Waiheke as the last Auckland ferry port excluded from the Public Transport Operating Model (PTOM).

Waiheke residents are fully reliant on ferries as a mode of travel from the island, as opposed to Devonport and Half Moon Bay, from which travel around Auckland by other means is possible. A monthly fare of $345 has been instituted recently but falls short in comparison to monthly fares in other parts of Auckland. This was a move Councillor Chris Darby described to Stuff on 15 June 2022 as “not able to meet islander’s expectations” and “interim”. • Olivia Walker

Full story in this week’s Gulf News… Out Now!!!

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