Auckland Mayor Wayne Brown's Three Waters rhetoric 'clickbait politics' - ex-councillor

The back and forth between Auckland's new Mayor and the Prime Minister has officially started.

Wayne Brown hasn't even been sworn in yet but some of his policies, and promises, are raising Jacinda Ardern's eyebrows.

Say cheese, even if it hurts - Ardern and Brown were pictured at a meeting on Thursday. 

But behind the smile, the Prime Minister's not happy about Brown telling Auckland Council bodies to scrap Three Waters.

"Obviously the legislation is actually already before select committee. We are expecting recommendations on the back of that and I want to listen to those and hear those and make changes that we believe can strengthen that legislation," Ardern said.

"But I made it clear to the mayor that his speculation about Three Waters not going ahead would mean rates increases and I'm not going to allow that to happen."

National Party-aligned ex-councillor Linda Cooper worked closely with Watercare. She isn't pro-Three Waters but says Mayor Brown can't stop Government policy.

"The mayor has one vote. And you've got statements of intent and letters of expectation and they need to be passed by the Governing Body, so the last time I looked it was still a democracy," Cooper said.

She wonders if the mayor is just playing to the crowd with his Three Waters rhetoric.

"It's good clickbait politics, people love that. People are angry, and understandably," Cooper said.

Brown's also copped some free advice from Auckland Business Chamber boss Simon Bridges - less political PR and more details on those big promises.

Particularly, when it comes to taking Ports of Auckland land for public use.

"What we need to see from Mayor Wayne Brown is some actual evidence and plan around the shrinking of the port, around what's going to happen to the cars, around what the cost is for that on consumers," Bridges said.

But still not a peep from the mayor-elect, again not responding to our requests for an interview and Bridges himself is yet to get a meeting.

"I'm hoping I'll have more chance to get a meeting than the media," Bridges said.