Tag Archives: Central government

NZRU ‘hustles’ towns and cities to build stadiums

What happens to our cathedrals, the large stadiums found in every major centre, if we lose faith?

### stuff.co.nz Last updated 05:00 14/06/2014
Sport
What about the state of New Zealand stadiums?
By Matt Nippert
[Excerpts from a longer article...] The covered 31,000-seat Forsyth Barr Stadium in Dunedin, constructed in time for the 2011 Rugby World Cup, may be the newest major sporting facility in the country but has already proved the most controversial. The bulk of its $224 million construction cost came from Dunedin City Council, but ongoing costs to ratepayers have caused considerable angst. Ratepayers were forced into a $2.3m bailout in May, and are mulling whether a permanent annual subsidy will be required to keep it running.

Getting to grips with exactly how much stadiums cost is a tricky exercise. Construction has often been piecemeal, with grandstands redeveloped or rebuilt over time, blurring total capital expenditure. And determining operational costs – whether stadiums require ongoing contributions by ratepayers – is further complicated by many facilities being run from within city councils or by council-controlled organisations. This makes the extraction of a discrete set of accounts, most notably in Dunedin and Waikato, an impossibility.

Analysis of accounts for Wellington and Auckland, run by dedicated trusts and two of the most transparent stadiums, shows that break-even is realistically the best case.

At New Zealand Rugby headquarters, chief executive Steve Tew broadly agrees that the glory days [of attendance at games] are over. Viewers watching broadcasts of a game have supplanted punters going through stadium turnstiles.

But there is one niche where the faith of the rugby faithful remains strong: All Blacks tests. Hosting the national team is often the only time stadiums up and down the country reach capacity.

While great for New Zealand Rugby coffers, Massey University’s Sam Richardson says the All Blacks have warped stadium construction priorities. “It’s an absolutely huge detriment. If you’re building a stadium where the financial viability year to year relies on an All Blacks test, there’s no question New Zealand Rugby plays a massive part in whether these facilities are going to be used to their potential,” he says.

Canterbury University economist Eric Crampton says building capacity for a solitary annual All Black test is akin to “buying a six-bedroom house just in case both sets of grandparents come to visit at the same time”. Crampton says the proliferation of large loss-making stadiums, both in New Zealand and worldwide, has been mainly because of the economic equivalent of hustling. “Sporting teams have been able to convince councils all over the place – and have been able to play them off against each other by threatening to move – to build excessive stadiums.
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“Fifa, like the International Olympic Committee, is widely regarded as corrupt. In that, it reflects our flawed species; while capable of fabulous feats, a dark side lurks.”

### ODT Online Sat, 14 Jun 2014
Editorial: Revelling in sport
OPINION As Dunedin and the South gear up for the excitement of tonight’s rugby test in the city, a sporting event in another league entirely kicked off yesterday.
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Garrick Tremain – 14 June 2015

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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Earthquake-prone Buildings Amendment Bill

The proposed amendment bill raises significant concerns about the maintenance of current building stock, the character and identity of towns and cities, and the economic and financial wellbeing of provincial councils and their communities. More than 7000 buildings south of Timaru would require upgrading, at a cost of $1.77 billion over a 15-year period.

Town Halls Merge 6

### ODT Online Mon, 24 Feb 2014
Councils aghast changes could cost billions
By Andrew Ashton
South Island councils are expected to offer a ”united front” in opposing new Government building regulations that could cost councils billions of dollars to implement.
Last year the Waitaki District Council joined the Dunedin and Invercargill city councils and the Central Otago, Clutha, Gore, Mackenzie, Southland, Timaru and Waimate district councils to present a joint submission on a discussion paper detailing proposed changes to the way earthquake-prone buildings are managed.
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Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

*Image: Town Halls and auxillary functions (clockwise from top left) Invercargill, Dunedin, Timaru and Oamaru – posterised by whatifdunedin

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National-led government rejects state sector reform

● The Trusts Charitable Foundation (TTCF Inc) ● The Trusts Community Foundation Ltd (TTCF Ltd) ● Otago Rugby Football Union (ORFU) ● Professional Rugby ● Centre of Excellence for Amateur Sport ● Harness Racing ● Department of Internal Affairs (DIA) ● Gambling Commission ● Pokies ● Rorts ● Organised Crime ● Serious Fraud ● Political Interference

On the subjects of RUGBY and POKIE TRUSTS (with respect to evolving evidence of organised white collar crime and serious fraud), we note the very troubling lack of accountability and transparency demonstrated by the top brass of Department of Internal Affairs, Serious Fraud Office, Office of the Auditor-General, Office of the Ombudsmen, and New Zealand Police. And indeed government ministers who, practised in the art of political interference, obfuscation and worse, see themselves as entirely above the law.

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### radionz.co.nz 23 February 2014
Radio New Zealand National
Sunday Morning with Richard Langston
http://www.radionz.co.nz/sunday

8:12 Insight: The Public Service – will it survive reforms?
In the last month, the Prime Minister and the Finance Minister have both confirmed that the drive under the “Better Public Services” banner will continue. The programme is one of the government’s four priorities and includes a cap on core administrative positions. The State Services Commission say the key to doing more with less lies in productivity, innovation, and increased agility to provide services. But, as Philippa Tolley has been finding out, others say public servants are now too wary to offer free and frank advice and that their democratic role is being undermined.
Audio | Download: Ogg MP3 ( 27′ 51″ )

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### radionz.co.nz Updated at 9:45 am today
RNZ News
‘Total overhaul’ of state sector sought
The former prime minister Sir Geoffrey Palmer is calling for a royal commission of inquiry into the public sector, saying it needs a complete overhaul. Sir Geoffrey says many departments and ministries do not cooperate with one another and lack the capacity to be effective. He says morale in the public sector is low, and too little attention is given to the appointment of chief executives.

“The system needs to be overhauled. New Zealand’s got a lot of serious problems that it’s going to have to face up to in the future and those problems require the best-quality governance that we can possibly have – and the public service is a vital part of that.”

Sir Geoffrey says a royal commission is needed to establish some clear principles for the public service to adhere to.
Read more

[Audio] http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/morningreport/audio/2586376/former-pm-calls-for-overhaul-of-public-sector

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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Oil and gas: Supply base competition

Southland Chamber of Commerce v Otago Chamber of Commerce

Is it just me, or does the Southland Chamber of Commerce sound more professional and well-thought than our local chamber’s (non value-added) offhand patter ??? Why would we think that.

### ODT Online Mon, 17 Feb 2014
Case for the base
The Otago Daily Times asked the chambers of commerce in both Otago and Southland to provide 10 reasons why their city should win the bid as Anadarko’s support base. Anadarko drill ship Noble Bob Douglas has begun test drilling 65km off the coast of the Otago Peninsula. The search for gas and oil has millions of dollars worth of potential for the city – either Dunedin or Invercargill – chosen as the support base.
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And the winner is . . . (on paper) the far far south.
Port of Bluff, NZLots of knowhow, space and capacity at Bluff, Southland

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Mike Dickison (@adzebill) tweeted at 7:50 AM on Mon, Feb 17, 2014:
Ooh, I’m in a stoush with the head of NZ Oil and Gas over whether petrol’s made of dinosaurs. [with newspaper link]

### Herald Online 6:25 AM Monday Feb 17, 2014 8 comments
Oil/gas show queried
By Staff Reporter – Wanganui Chronical -
The use of dinosaurs to promote an oil industry roadshow is a “cynical ploy”, says a curator at Whanganui Regional Museum.
The roadshow What Lives Down Under is touring South Taranaki and Wanganui to explain the work of New Zealand Gas & Oil, Beach Energy and Tag Oil. It has a large dinosaur on the side of the roadshow big truck and the image is used in the promotional material.
The museum’s curator of natural history, Mike Dickison, says dinosaurs have nothing to do with oil. “It was not an educational show at all but is entirely funded by the gas and oil industry to convince kids that drilling is safe and cool.” The roadshow website linked oil and dinosaurs saying “the gas in your family’s car might have been a dinosaur”, which Dr Dickison said was incorrect.
Read more

What lives down under - roadshow truck [wanganui chronicle via  NZH]Photo: Bevan Conley

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18.3.10 Dunedin harbourside for oil base?
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Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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Christchurch stadium

“No stadium can make money unless it has millions of moneyed sports fans living within its catchment area.” –Lee Vandervis

Christchurch Mail 30-1-14 page 1 (1)Christchurch Mail 30-1-14 page 3 (1)Christchurch Mail 30-1-14 page 1 | Christchurch Mail 30-1-14 page 3

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30.7.12 National Govt puts champagne and stadium before shelter housing
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16.1.10 Deans Stand at AMI Stadium: DONE

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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Whaleoil once asked “Where has Panty Slut-boy gone?” —DCC now.

dbptennis [nominister.blogspot.co.nz]25.2.06 The Briefing Room (Ian Wishart) – Benson-Pope & The Naked Schoolgirls

2.3.06 The Briefing Room (Ian Wishart) – Why David Benson-Pope is a liar…

27.11.06 Whaleoil (Cameron Slater) – Where has Panty Slut-boy gone?

18.4.07 Kiwiblog (David Farrar) – Conversation with a journalist

19.4.07 Cyfswatch NZ (watchingcyfswatchnewzealand) – David Benson Pope (aka Panty Slut Boy and smacker of school kids) is now fronting the Anti-Smacking Bill for Labour!

25.7.07 Whaleoil (Cameron Slater) – Panty Slut-boy is denying everything

27.7.07 The Briefing Room (Ian Wishart) – Something else David Benson-Pope fudged on…
“…Like many in the “[BDSM] community”, Roxanne is linked to a Master, or Owner, and has personally witnessed David Benson-Pope on several occasions. He was always more on the sub/slave side as opposed to pure submissive. Trying to use a vanilla (straight) way of explaining things is hard. It just means that his is a very serving play. Very much into puppy play, and age play, corner time, and his biggest seemed to be humiliation.” He is also a cross-dresser, says Roxanne, but only when instructed to by his owner, “Mistress Princess”, during humiliation sessions. “As part of his humiliation fetish he is called ‘panty-slut-boy’ …when it’s humiliation time it’s normally beautiful lacy underwear.” “In David Benson-Pope’s size?” “Absolutely!” she confirms.”
“[Author's note: when this story was published online in November last year, David Benson-Pope refused to deny the detailed allegations contained in the full version. In fact, he went to the trouble of ringing a senior Otago Daily Times journalist at home that evening, expressly to ensure that the newspaper was not quoting him as denying the story. Instead, the quote he approved was the much more vague: "When would I have time for that?" To this day, despite many attempts to get a straight answer, Benson-Pope has still never denied the story.]”

23.10.07 Stuff, On The House (Colin Espiner) – Dancing to the Cabinet shuffle
“Dunedin South MP David Benson-Pope has told the Otago Daily Times that he will seek re-election next year. This is a surprise, since the Labour hierarchy thought it had given the disgraced MP enough hints that his presence was no longer required. Benson-Pope was forced to resign over the Madeleine Setchell affair, when his office interfered in her employment process because of her relationship with National’s press secretary Kevin Taylor. But he was political dead wood long before this, despite somehow enduring years of controversy over the “tennis balls” furore involving his time as a teacher at Bayfield High. Benson-Pope has no hope of getting back into Cabinet but Clark can’t force him not to stand again as an MP. At the age of 57, with the teaching avenue probably now closed to him, there may well be few other employment avenues open to him.

23.10.07 No Minister (Fairfacts Media) – Panty Slut Boy begs for more
“…Panty Slut Boy’s membership of the Southern Kinx bondage club…”

2.9.08 Homepaddock (Ele Ludemann) – How desperate are they?
“…the Dunedin grapevine is buzzing with the suggestion that David Benson-Pope is going to stand for New Zealand First in Dunedin South…”

2.9.08 No Minister (Fairfacts Media) – Panty Slut Boy batting for other team
“If anything highlights the corrupt farce that this Liarbour-led government has become, it is the latest rumours concerning former minister David Benson-Pope.
It has nothing to do with schoolgirls in nightdresses, tennis balls or the Southern Kinx bondage group.”

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The bullshit aura of ‘leadership ability’ continues via the Mayor of Dunedin’s powers of appointment, the DCC website, and Panty Slut-boy’s self-belief.
See him to public stocks in the Octagon? Oh, that’s right – YOU voted for him.

Profile: Councillor David Benson-Pope

David Benson PopeDavid was born in Dunedin and educated at St Clair Primary, Tahuna Intermediate and Kings High Schools and Otago University. He is the former Head of Languages and Outdoor Education at Bayfield High School.

David was a Dunedin City Councillor from 1986 – 1999 and MP for Dunedin South until 2008.

During his time in parliament, David held the following Ministerial Positions:
Minister of Fisheries
Associate Justice Minister
Minister Responsible for the Law Commission
Associate Minister for the Environment
Associate Minister of Education (Schools)
Minister Responsible for the Education Review Office
Minister for Social Development and Employment
Minister for the Environment

His other Parliamentary Responsibilities included:
Extensive Select Committee membership
Trustee of the Norman Kirk Memorial Trust 2002-2006
Chair of the New Zealand/German Parliamentary Friendship Group 2001 – 2006
Senior Government Whip 2002-2004

David is well known for his strong support of and involvement in many environmental upgrades and urban design initiatives such as the St Clair Hot-Salt-Water Pool, the redevelopment of the Railway Station and Law Courts, improvements in the Octagon, George and Princes Streets, the Exchange and Portobello, and landscape improvements at Bayfield Park and Portobello Road. He also helped facilitate improved facilities at King’s, Queen’s and Bayfield High schools. David was the first chairman of City Forests Ltd, and is a former Chair of the Otago Youth Adventure Trust and the Spirit of Adventure Trust (Otago). David is committed to working in the best interests of Dunedin and Dunedin people.

█ David has been appointed Chair of the Planning and Regulatory Committee and a member of the Consent Hearings and District Liquor Licensing Committees.

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Recently at What if? Dunedin:
15.1.14 Comment by Elizabeth
18.10.13 Whaleoil mention [post]

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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Taking to water like a duck on oil

A report on ethical investment opportunities, commissioned by Dunedin City Council, will be discussed by councillors later this month.

“This is an opportunity for us as a community to have a conversation about what we collectively feel comfortable making money from. It is important to have this conversation.” –Cr MacTavish (via ODT)

The councillor has written:
“I think drilling for hydrocarbons is unethical because of climate change. At the Council, we’re already having to factor climate change planning into decision-making, and it’s pretty obvious that it’s not the cheap option.”

Read Jinty MacTavish’s recent comments at ODT Online:
On ethics and hypocrisy… (9.1.14) and Climate change policy, cycle investments (12.1.14).

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Link supplied.
Monday, 13 January 2014 4:06 a.m.

Ethical Sat Nav [newsbiscuit.com] 1Cr MacTavish need never get lost again

### newsbiscuit.com Jan 7th, 2014
Politicians to replace faulty moral compass with new Ethical Sat Nav
By Ludicity
MPs are preparing for the arrival of a new piece of wearable technology that will help them navigate difficult terrain and always guide them towards the high moral ground.
The EPS, or Ethical Positioning System, operates by triangulating a person’s political standpoint via a number of morally aware ‘smart satellites’. If a politician starts to veer off course, perhaps about to break a manifesto pledge, the Sat Nav will interrupt with the message: ‘You are no longer on the agreed route, please perform a U-turn now.’
The new system replaces the old and unreliable moral compass. ‘In theory the moral compass should have worked,’ explained philosopher AC Grayling, ‘but many politicians found it confusing and were clearly unable to tell which way it was pointing. All too often they either they left it at home or held it upside down and headed off in entirely the wrong direction.’
Read more

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Those speaking at the inaugural Oil Free Future Summit included Gareth Hughes (Green Party), Jinty MacTavish, Prof Bob Lloyd, and photo journalist John Wathen.

offs-poster (detail) 4a### ODT Online Mon, 13 Jan 2014
Flotilla to hinder drilling
By John Lewis
Oil Free Otago has established a ”rapid response” team of up to 260 people to take to the waters around Otago to hinder Anadarko Petroleum Corporation’s deep-sea drilling operations. Oil Free Otago spokeswoman Niamh O’Flynn said the team was established during the Oil Free Future Summit in Dunedin at the weekend, and hinted it may be used to block the shipping lane in Otago Harbour to stop Anadarko vessels from using Dunedin as a servicing port.
Read more

Related Posts and Comments:
9.4.13 Dunedin: Future service town to Shell? #realitycheck
24.9.12 Stadium Councillors back coastal oil exploration
13.4.10 Dunedin – an oil base?
18.3.10 Dunedin harbourside for oil base?
26.2.10 Latest on Dunedin’s offshore oil and gas prospects

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

*Images: newsbiscuit.com – Ethical Positioning System (EPS); oilfreeotago.com – OFFS poster (detail)

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