Wellington Scoop

Bonds idea to save heritage buildings came from Council CEO, says Jack Yan

News release from JY&A Media
Mayoral candidate Jack Yan says he supports Wellington City Council CEO Kevin Lavery’s idea of raising funds for earthquake strengthening on the bond market.

Mr Yan says he had a comprehensive talk with Mr Lavery last week, at which Mr Lavery raised the idea with him.

‘It’s an inspired idea, and I was delighted to see that Mr Lavery sees the next triennium as proactively as I did,’ says Mr Yan.

Mr Yan says he discussed a “first 100 days” plan with Mr Lavery based on the mayoral campaign manifesto that he issued in April. It was during this discussion that the earthquake bond idea was raised. Mr Lavery gave him permission to state this part of the conversation publicly this morning.

‘It’s my policy to keep confidences till I have permission otherwise,’ says Mr Yan. ‘Politics aside, we should go with it.’

Mr Yan’s campaign team became aware of the concept during July’s Nethui, when a Council staff member noted the synergies between Mr Lavery’s idea and one proposed by Hamish McConnochie at the conference’s ‘Wellington Workshop’.

Council staff had only been directed to begin working on Mr Lavery’s idea the previous workday, Mr McConnochie says.

The concept sees the property owners borrowing money against council assets, with the issue of bonds creating a fund.

Mr Yan believes that Mr Lavery’s idea would see a rate of return better than what a bank would provide, and that it would appeal to everyday investors.

‘The stick would be for council to acquire buildings that are not up to code for demolition, with a view of ensuring public safety,’ he says. ‘The Council’s financial position makes for a very stable investment, and I see few faults in Mr Lavery’s concept.

‘As my campaign seeks the best and most meritorious ideas as the way forward for Wellington, then I’m happy one of this calibre has come across my team, in line with our own ideas.’

Hamish McConnochie is acting as Mr Yan’s media relations manager during his candidacy for the Wellington mayoralty.

John Morrison’s goal: bonds to save heritage buildings


  1. Nora, 12. August 2013, 23:08

    Thank you Jack Yan with regard to the Bonds issue coming from Mr Lavery the new CEO……another case of plagiarism from Cr Morrison? But not so surprising for those of us who have seen his performance at Council meetings.

  2. Celia WB, 12. August 2013, 23:15

    The bond idea is an interesting variation on our existing policy too – still need government legislative change to the Rating Act which has already been requested.

    Here’s a link to my take on the earthquake/heritage issue so far.

  3. richard maclean, 13. August 2013, 11:49

    Greetings – just a note that Kevin Lavery wants to make it clear that the earthquake bond idea is not his – and that he does not have a ‘manifesto’ as such for Wellington though of course he does have his own ideas.

    Kevin met with both Cr Morrison and Jack Yan in the past week – and quake-strengthening issues were discussed with both candidates – as they have been discussed with a wide range of other candidates and interested parties in recent weeks.

    Kevin has asked senior staff at the City Council to continue work on a range of proposals for financial assistance for building owners seeking to strengthen their properties, including the bond idea. cheers Richard MacLean WCC Communications

  4. Jimmy, 13. August 2013, 16:41

    Thanks Richard,
    Clarifies things nicely. Nora, Did you read this?