The seamy side of prostitution promotion erupted into public view yesterday, with the admission by Mayor Lawrence Yule that Hastings Council blew the opportunity to attract a magnet business to its CBD.
“I took my eye off the ball on this one,” he acknowledged, “consumed as I was by winning approval of the sports park. I never realised the competition for the brothel would be so fierce. The in-fighting was unbelievable. I didn’t expect Barbara Arnott to resort to below-the-belt tactics … and as a result, both our cities lost the opportunity.”
By now, everyone knows that the Promiscuous Girlz brothel will be located in Dannevirke.
Mayor Yule said he had been assured by Hastings City Marketing that Promiscuous Girlz was all set to occupy prime space opposite the clocktower. “Think about the lift a brothel would have given the CBD. I can tell you, it would have attracted more after-dark business than the under-performing Noodle Canteen, which is vacating the premises.”
However, Hastings’ plans were dashed when Napier Mayor Barbara Arnott threatened to withdraw her support for the “regional” sports park if HDC threatened Napier’s brothel monopoly.
“It’s bad enough that HDC wants to undermine our splendid Park Island soccer fields by building a duplicate facility at Percival Road, but stealing our prostitution trade too would have been obscene,” she said. “If I let that happen, I’d look impotent, and next he’d try to bring dolphins to Splash Planet. I told Lawrence that would end my pimping for his pet projects.”
Before ruffled feathers could be smoothed between the two mayors, Teresa McGregor, proprietor of Promiscuous Girlz, decided the whole Hastings/Napier scene just wasn’t business-friendly. “I wouldn’t let my girls carry on that way. It was just this kind of inter-city bickering that lost them Massey University and the Culinary Institute,” she said, adding, “I had this same problem when I wanted to open my rare book shop in Clive. Whereas in Dannevirke, they bend over backwards to be helpful.”
Councillor Kevin Rose, who holds the new community facilities & infrastructure portfolio at the Regional Council, took a more laid back view of the controversy. “I think it came out all right in the end. From a regional and natural justice perspective, I think it’s advantageous to spread our physical assets throughout Hawke’s Bay. Maybe this is a case of Napier having too much of a good thing … and as for Mayor Yule, well, he made a big mistake in getting Mayor Arnott aroused.”
Just another case of the Regional Councillors looking at the big picture.