Tag Archives: New Zealand Rugby Union

DVML and ORFU refuse to disclose 2012 Otago Rugby deal

Terry Davies [re-imaged screenshot - youtube.com] 1
Dunedin Venues chief executive Terry Davies was asked to release details of the “Otago Rugby deal” struck in 2012 as part of the Otago Rugby Football Union recovery package.

Surprise! Mr Davies and ORFU don’t want you to know how much DVML pays ORFU for each rugby game played at Forsyth Barr Stadium, and given DVML is struggling to meet the sponsorship commitment (see previous post). Worse, DVML keeps paying even though ORFU is now flush with funds.

Just how are these payments passing through Council-owned books? The money comes from your rates; piling on top of every other subsidy DCC is gifting to the stadium and professional rugby.

The 2012 deal involved David Davies, the previous DVML chief executive. Who else was involved at ORFU, NZRU and DCC? Was the Mayor of Dunedin Dave Cull a signatory? More to come.

Correspondence received from Bev Butler
Fri, 12 Sep 2014 at 2:38 p.m.

Message: They really don’t want any part of this agreement out.

From: Terry Davies [DVML]
To: Bev Butler
Subject: LGOIMA request: DVML/ORFU venue hire agreement
Date: Wed, 10 Sep 2014 22:28:54 +0000

Dear Bev

Please find attached a response to your email request dated 27 August 2014 as per below. A copy has been posted to you today.

Yours faithfully
Terry Davies [DVML]

From: Bev Butler
Date: 27 August 2014 10:08:59 am NZST
To: Terry Davies [DVML]
Subject: RE: LGOIMA request: DVML/ORFU venue hire agreement

Thanks, Terry.
I would still appreciate a redacted copy of the agreement.
Thank you.
Regards
Bev

From: Terry Davies [DVML]
To: Bev Butler
Subject: FW: LGOIMA request: DVML/ORFU venue hire agreement
Date: Tue, 26 Aug 2014 04:19:21 +0000
Dear Bev

Thank you for your email below. Please find attached the response which has also been posted to you.

Yours faithfully

[Terry Davies, DVML]

From: Bev Butler
Sent: Monday, 28 July 2014 9:01 a.m.
To: Terry Davies [DVML]
Cc: Sandy Graham [DCC]
Subject: LGOIMA request: DVML/ORFU venue hire agreement

Dear Terry

In 2012 DVML signed a venue hire agreement with the ORFU. I request the following:

1. The date of this agreement;
2. The names of the signatories on the agreement;
3. A copy of this agreement.

Thank you.

Yours sincerely
Bev Butler

Letter from DVML to Bev Butler 11.09.14

█ Download: Letter to Bev Butler 11.09.14 (PDF, 49.4 KB)

Related Posts and Comments:
8.9.14 Jim Harland and the stadium MESS
● 1.8.14 DVML and the “Otago Rugby” deal (sponsorship and payments)
15.7.14 Stadium: Who is being protected?
24.6.14 Stadium: DVML, mothballing, and ‘those TVs’ #LGOIMA
18.6.14 Crowe Horwath Report (May 2014) – Review of DVML Expenses
9.6.14 DVML: Crowe Horwath audit report (Hedderwick)
2.6.14 Stadium costs ballpark at $21.337 million pa, Butler & Oaten
23.5.14 Stadium | DCC Draft Annual Plan 2014/15 ● Benson-Pope…
11.5.14 Stadium: DCC proposes extra funds for stadium debt repayment
9.5.14 DCC Draft Annual Plan 2014/15 Submission by Bev Butler
10.4.14 Stadium: Edgar’s $1m donation (private sector fundraising)
3.4.14 DVML: Lost in transaction II (flatscreen TVs)
22.3.14 DVML, ‘Money for jam…..fig jam’
19.3.14 ORFU: Black-tie dinner, theft or fraud?
17.3.14 ORFU: Black-tie dinner on ratepayers
15.3.14 Mayoral DISGRACE: DCC won’t ask ORFU to repay $480K bailout
14.3.14 ORFU flush to pay creditors
4.3.14 Bev Butler: Guy Hedderwick’s departure package (LGOIMA)
7.9.13 Stadium: $266 million, more or less?
30.7.13 Stadium: Accountability, paper trail leads unavoidably to NEWS
4.7.13 Carisbrook: DCC losses
15.2.13 Carisbrook: Call for OAG investigation into DCC / ORFU deals

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

*Image: whatifdunedin – re-imaged screenshot from YouTube clip, Terry Davies press conference regarding streaker (ODT 15.6.14)

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Gambling Commission shuts down racing’s Bluegrass pokie trust

According to Barry Stewart on Channel 39 there’s a story in tomorrow’s ODT about: “A pokie trust established to fund the racing industry closed down.”

Why wait?

The Decision – Gambling Commission

Here’s the Department of Internal Affairs (DIA) press release
(in which dirty bastards at DIA, racing and pokie industry make Mike O’Brien the fall guy):

Pokie trust obtained licence by deception – Gambling Commission

5 August 2014

The Department of Internal Affairs has welcomed a decision by the Gambling Commission which has found that a Blenheim based gaming machine society, Bluegrass Holdings Limited, obtained its licence to operate pokie machines by deception and that a decision to cancel its Class 4 operator’s licence was warranted. The Commission’s decision, published today, 5 August 2014, comes after a two year protracted and complicated process between Bluegrass Holdings and the Department.

Internal Affairs’ Acting Director of Gambling Compliance, Raj Krishnan, says action was taken to cancel Bluegrass’s licence in July 2012 because of concerns about the suitability of Bluegrass’s operations including the actions of particular key individuals.

“Bluegrass’s deliberate and repeated efforts to deceive the Secretary were intolerable. There is no room for such behaviour in the gambling sector and we are pleased that those involved will now need to move on. We put a lot of effort into this case as we believe ensuring the integrity of the gambling sector is of great importance. Gaming machine societies exist to distribute funds for the community. Millions of dollars are involved and the utmost integrity is required,” says Mr Krishnan.

The Gambling Commission found that Bluegrass provided false and misleading information to Internal Affairs about its funding, those involved in the society and the role of Blenheim man Mike O’Brien in particular. Mike O’Brien is well-known in the harness racing community and is the son of Patrick O’Brien, former chairman of Harness Racing New Zealand and former chair of Bluegrass, which primarily provided grant money to the racing sector. The Commission says documentary evidence indicates Mike O’Brien “covertly exercised influence over the society’s grants and operation….” (Paragraph 66)

The Commission’s decision notes that the efforts to deceive the Department were repeated and took place from the time of Bluegrass’s initial application, through the investigation process and continued during the course of formal proceedings. The deceit stemmed from Bluegrass’s failure to advise the true source of funding to establish the society as well as the role of Mike O’Brien.

“It is unlikely that the Secretary [of Internal Affairs] would have granted the licence application if he had known either that the money had been advanced by Mike O’Brien or that its ultimate source was three racing clubs. The Appellant obtained its licence by providing materially false and misleading information to the Secretary.” (Paragraph 82)

The Commission also found there was evidence that Bluegrass was open to being influenced by its venue operators, contrary to the Gambling Act 2003 and it believed that allowing venue operators to exercise influence over grants was necessary to its survival. (Paragraph 65)

The Commission found the evidence of Bluegrass’s present chair, Blenheim electrician, Peter Gurr not to be sufficiently credible and compelling to remove the doubts as to Bluegrass’s suitability. The Commission says the nature of the deception means it is appropriate for Bluegrass’s licence to be cancelled to “deter other applicants from similar attempts in the future”.

“The circumstances of the case illustrate that detection of this sort of deception is difficult and it is important therefore that the consequences following detection are sufficiently serious to prevent the operation of licensing regime being undermined by the provision of false or misleading information for the advantage of applicants.” (Paragraph 89)

Mr Krishnan says: “This type of behaviour detracts from the good work of many others who distribute pokie grants for the benefit of the community. We’d encourage operators to take close note of this decision and let it serve as a benchmark as to what is expected from them. This type of deceptive conduct and efforts to mislead are also captured in investigations presently being conducted by Internal Affairs, the Serious Fraud Office and Police.”

Bluegrass Holdings Ltd owns 144 gaming machines (pokies) at eight pubs around New Zealand.

“Internal Affairs is currently assessing the behaviour of the people who are responsible for the gaming machines at those venues. We have a duty to the wider community to ensure that venue operators are ethical and uphold the law. Whether those pubs will be allowed to continue operating pokies will depend on whether we are satisfied that all the relevant criteria are met,” says Mr Krishnan.

In accordance with the Commission’s decision the licence cancellation will come into effect on 18 August 2014.

Questions and Answers

1. What happens on 18 August to the pokie machines owned by Bluegrass?
Once Bluegrass’s licence to operate is cancelled on 18 August all its machines are turned off. We’d expect the machines to be sold possibly to another gaming machine society. (See Q5 for further details)

2. Doesn’t this action mean less money will go into the community?
There is no evidence to suggest that overall gambling profits will decrease if the venues in question cease to offer gambling. Those who gamble at these venues are likely to simply gamble elsewhere if the venues lose their licences.

3. What happens to the money already collected from people gambling on the machines?
The Gambling Act (2003) specifies that once a society’s licence is cancelled the remaining net proceeds from its Class 4 gambling must be distributed to authorised purposes in the community within 20 working days, unless a further period is agreed to by the Secretary (for Internal Affairs). Internal Affairs will be working with Bluegrass to ensure the correct distribution takes place.

4. What happens to the organisations which received money from Bluegrass last year?
No organisations which have had their funding applications already accepted by Bluegrass should lose out. Bluegrass was set up to primarily distribute funds to the racing sector. There is nothing to stop the racing clubs (or other community organisations) that received funds from Bluegrass from applying for pokie grants from other gaming machine societies, which are the organisations responsible for distributing the proceeds from gaming machines to the community.

5. What happens to the eight pubs which have Bluegrass machines? Can they transfer to another society?
Yes they can, however this requires a fresh licence application to be made to the Department for each venue, and we will assess each application on a case by case basis. We will assess in detail both the behaviour of the venues and the history of compliance of the societies applying to take the venues on. We have a duty to the wider community to ensure that the operators in the gambling sector are ethical and uphold the law. Each time the Secretary (of Internal Affairs) makes an approval decision in respect of an application by a society to take on a new venue, he must be satisfied of both the venue’s ability and the society’s ability to operate in a compliant fashion. We will not grant a venue application until we have worked through the enquiries we need to make to be sure that these venues and societies are compliant in all respects. It should be noted a recent decision by the Gambling Commission emphasises that the onus is on the applicant society to satisfy Internal Affairs that the relevant criteria are met.

6. Does the action of DIA mean that those pubs will go under?
If a venue is compliant with the law and aligns with a compliant gaming machine society, then there is no reason why is should not continue to be able to operate pokie machines. We should point out that pubs host pokie machines voluntarily, and when they do, they are only able to recover the cost associated with hosting those machines, up to a limit. The Gambling Act did not intend for pubs to make profits from hosting pokie machines. Therefore, if these venues are dependent on the money from pokies for their survival something is wrong with the underlying viability of the venue

7. Does this action mean that those involved in Bluegrass will never be able to operate in the pokie sector again?
Yes, it is our intention to ensure the integrity of a sector which generates approximately $800 million per annum in turnover. Given the large amount of funding generated by gambling the highest levels of sector integrity are vital to make sure that the community doesn’t lose out on much needed grant money, and that those in the sector, who comply and do the right thing, aren’t undermined. Our recent actions demonstrate that we will detect unlawful and dishonest behaviour, and take whatever action necessary to reduce and eliminate non-compliance.

Media contact:
Sue Ingram, Communications
Department of Internal Affairs Te Tari Taiwhenua
Direct Dial: +64 4 494 0584 | Mobile: +64 27 541 4696

[ends]

DIA Link

Related Posts and Comments:
11.10.13 New Zealand: Pokie trusts same everywhere #pokierorts
31.3.13 DIA and Office of the Auditor General stuff up bigtime #pokierorts
21.2.13 DIA, SFO investigation #pokierorts
18.11.12 Martin Legge: DIA audit criticism #pokierorts #coverup
28.7.12 Pokie fraud: ODT fails to notice own backyard
15.7.12 Martin Legge responds to media stories on Murray Acklin, TTCF and DIA

█ For more, enter the terms *dia*, *pokies*, *pokie trusts*, *orfu*, *nzru*, *gambling commission* and *ttcf* in the search box at right.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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Filed under Business, Carisbrook, DCC, DVML, Economics, Geography, Highlanders, Media, Name, New Zealand, NZRU, ORFU, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Sport, Stadiums, Stupidity

DVML and the “Otago Rugby” deal (sponsorship and payments)

Is Terry Davies, chief executive of Dunedin Venues Management Ltd, telling porkies about the “Otago Rugby” deal signed in 2012 ???
(DVML/ORFU/NZRU)

Compare Mr Davies’ reply to Bev Butler today with information Whatifdunedin received from a source in mid-July 2014.

The reply to Question 1.(d) is interesting. Mr Davies states that none of the $3 million sponsorship was paid to ORFU but DVML does provide a staff member to assist ORFU with its sponsorship proposals. This is probably Paul Thompson. The other information from a source claims that DVML has to make up the difference to $1 million per year; this is paid to ORFU if less than $1 million in sponsorship is obtained. So the other staff member only spends one hour per week for six months each year?

Question 3. He says there’s no DVML company record of staff movements and NZ/overseas travel in approaching sponsors. Really? If true, that’s a large management failing which the DVML board is ultimately responsible for.

Why the discrepancies, Terry Davies ????

INFORMATION FROM SOURCE

Received mid-July [paraphrased]
Re the “Otago Rugby” contract – DVML did the Sponsorship but had to guarantee a certain amount. There was a heated exchange over this between Darren Burden (DVML chief executive) and one of his managers who said ‘we work for the ratepayers not rugby’. Burden was going to pay Otago the difference between what was raised and what DVML had to raise in the contract, despite Otago making a profit. The manager said DVML shouldn’t pay Otago, because they were deciding what was sponsorship and what was not.

[One day later]
The Otago Rugby deal is something like this:
DVML assist Otago Rugby with their sponsorship and the target is $1 million per year. DVML’s Paul Thompson was supposed to assist Otago Rugby. In the first two years, sponsorship didn’t reach the $1 million mark.
DVML still pays Otago Rugby to play at the stadium. Ask how much DVML have paid to Otago Rugby in the last two years to keep them afloat despite them making a profit.

[Two days later]
Not sure how it’s recorded in the DVML accounts, it was around $150k in the first year and similar in the second year. This is the difference between the $1 million DVML had to ensure ORFU got for sponsorship and what ORFU got. The deal lasts for three years. So this would be the last.

From: Bev Butler
To: Neville Frost [DVML]
CC: Kim Barnes [DVML]
Subject: LGOIMA Request: DVML Sponsorships
Date: Tue, 1 Apr 2014 08:57:35 +1300

Tuesday 1st April 2014

Dear Neville

It was reported in the ODT (22/03/14) that Mr Guy Hedderwick played an “integral” part in securing over $3 million in sponsorship for the stadium during the period ie Jan 2010 to Dec 2013.

I request:

1.
(a) How much of this $3 million figure has already been paid to DVML?
(b) Does DVML receive the full $3 million or does some other organisation receive some of this $3 million?
(c) How much of this $3 million is earmarked for the ORFU with payments already received or payments yet to be received?
(d) What percentage of the sponsorships secured by Mr Guy Hedderwick and/or other DVML staff does the ORFU receive?
(e) Is the ORFU making any financial contribution to Mr Hedderwick’s salary or expenses? If so, what percentage?

2.
(a) Did Mr Hedderwick’s salary package include commission on any sponsorship agreements he secured in his role as commercial director of DVML?
(b) What percentage commission did Mr Hedderwick receive for the $3 million sponsorship agreements secured as reported in the ODT (22/03/14)?
(c) Did the commission payments received by Mr Hedderwick exceed the salary range as stated in the DVML annual reports? If so, on what date was the DVML board informed of this?

3.
Thank you for your recent email containing the list of Mr Hedderwick’s DVML business trips. In this list the main reason for the majority of these trips was “meet with potential sponsors”. I request the names of the sponsors which Mr Hedderwick was successful at securing coupled with the name of the city where he met these potential sponsors. For your convenience, I have supplied a summary of these cities and the number of times he visited each city. Note I have included only the cities where it is stated the reason for the trip being “meet with potential sponsors”.

City (Number of trips)………Names of Sponsors
Christchurch (11 times)
Singapore (once)
Sydney (once)
Auckland (20 times)
Wellington (4 times)
New Plymouth (once)
Rotorua (once)

Please respond electronically. Thank you.

Yours sincerely

Bev Butler

————————————

From: Bev Butler
To: Terry Davies [DVML]
Subject: LGOIMA Request: DVML Sponsorships
Date: Tue, 17 Jun 2014 07:06:59 +1200

Dear Mr Davies

I understand the LGOIMA request I sent below was delayed due to the investigation by Crowe Horwath. Now that the Crowe Horwath report has been released and the report does not answer these questions would you please respond to my LGOIMA request.

Thank you.

Yours sincerely

Bev Butler

————————————

From: Bev Butler
Sent: Monday, 28 July 2014 2:51 p.m.
To: Terry Davies
Subject: FW: LGOIMA Request: DVML Sponsorships
Importance: High

Monday 28th July 2014

Dear Terry

The LGOIMA request below is still outstanding and has now breached the 20 day requirement under the provisions of LGOIMA.

I would appreciate a response to this request.

Thank you.

Yours sincerely

Bev Butler

————————————

From: Terry Davies [DVML]
To: Bev Butler
Subject: FW: LGOIMA Request: DVML Sponsorships
Date: Fri, 1 Aug 2014 02:56:12 +0000

Dear Bev

Further to your email dated 28 July and original request of 1 April, please find attached the response. A copy of the letter has been posted to you today.

Yours faithfully
Terry Davies

CEO [DVML]

B Butler 310714 (PDF, 82.8 KB)
Terry Davies letter 1.8.14 (2)

Crowe Horwath report cover (May 2014)

Crowe Horwath Report – Review of DVML Expenses (PDF, 363 KB)

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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Filed under Business, Democracy, Disinformation, DVML, Economics, Highlanders, Name, New Zealand, NZRU, ORFU, People, Politics, Project management, Sport, Stadiums, Stupidity

Stadium: Out of the mouths of uni babes…. #DVML

Illuminate 2014 [eventfinder.co.nz]Paint party at Fubar

ODT champions the stadium using the local (primary school for socioeconomics and slant misconstrued statistics) A+ student president. Was she invited to write the column or is she a Farry Follower (the next best thing since ‘Our Stadium’, not sliced bread). Aren’t Terry Davies and Nick Smith close in the ‘make it work’ factory. Let’s do some research, aye~!

Forsyth Barr stadium is important to and popular with students, writes Otago University Students Association president Ruby Sycamore-Smith.

### ODT Online Wed, 16 Jul 2014
Opinion
It’s here now, so make the most of it
by Ruby Sycamore-Smith
The future of Forsyth Barr Stadium is important to students. The OUSA represents just under 20,000 members of the Dunedin population and we are high users of the stadium. We see it as a great benefit to Dunedin people. The 2013 OUSA student survey of Dunedin facilities showed a very high satisfaction with the stadium. [...] The financial concerns cannot be ignored. And some of the antagonism caused by the provenance of the stadium remains to be settled. Our experience is that DVML is working to ensure the facility is used. We are working with them as much as possible for our own events but also events the DVML team brings to Dunedin that have student interest.
Read more

An obliviously astute and illuminated young woman.
Pride of the South.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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Filed under Business, Concerts, CST, DCC, Democracy, Disinformation, DVML, Economics, Events, Fun, Highlanders, Hot air, Media, Name, NZRU, ORFU, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Site, Sport, Stadiums, Stupidity, University of Otago, What stadium

Rugby stadiums not filling #SkyTV

Eden Park [stuff.co.nz]Waitakere Stadium may replace Eden Park

“Still the historical home of Auckland rugby and provided we get cost-effective venue hire, we can make it work.” –Andy Dalton, Auckland Rugby

### nzherald.co.nz 5:00 AM Tuesday Jul 15, 2014
Auckland rugby looks at new home
By Campbell Burnes
The Auckland Rugby Union is looking at the possibility of shifting their ITM Cup home games away from Eden Park as paltry crowds hit them financially. Auckland Rugby has been an official tenant of Eden Park since 1925 and historically has always been associated with the ground and sporting success there. While nothing has been formally tabled, and all five home ITM games this year will take place at Eden Park, the Herald understands there is a growing feeling that a venue such as Waitakere’s Trusts Stadium would be more suitable from 2015 or 2016.
Read more

****

FB Stadium [newstalkzb.co.nz]Stadium/Rugby propped by Dunedin ratepayer subsidy (direct and hidden)

“When you look back at this time last year when we were all crying into our soup…” –Roger Clark, Highlanders

### ODT Online Tue, 15 Jul 2014
Rugby: Real money to be made from hosting games
By Steve Hepburn
The Highlanders were due to arrive in Durban early this morning and begin preparing for their playoff match against the Sharks on Sunday morning. The side ended up sixth in the table after the final round of games in the weekend and will be on the road the entire time it is in the playoffs. Highlanders general manager Roger Clark said the franchise would make a little bit of money out of making the playoffs but the real benefits came to those that hosted the games. He was yet to finalise how much money the team would receive for making the playoffs but it was not significant, he said.
Read more

█ See comments to this article at ODT Online by russandbev, QsRC, MikeStk and others.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

*Images: stuff.co.nz – Eden Park; newstalkzb.co.nz Forsyth Barr Stadium

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Great quote: men

Received.
Sunday, 13 Jul 2014 at 5:56 PM

John Steinbeck, Cannery Row (1)

Symbiosis across a number of threads (including for DCC, CST, DVML, ORFU, Highlanders, University of Otago, NZRU, DIA) but go to recent comments here and here.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

4 Comments

Filed under Business, CST, DCC, DCHL, DCTL, Delta, Democracy, Design, DVL, DVML, Economics, Highlanders, Hot air, Name, NZRU, NZTA, ORFU, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Queenstown, Site, Sport, Stadiums, Stupidity, Tourism, Town planning, University of Otago, Urban design, What stadium

Southern Region, serving itself —or professional rugby (and Sky TV)

### ODT Online Tue, 1 Jul 2014
Opinion
Fresh thinking needed in local government
By Ciaran Keogh
Perhaps it is time to look at a far-reaching reform of the way local government functions at both local and regional level. There are substantial efficiencies to be gained from integrating many council functions across the councils within the region. More than 10 years ago I did away with all IT functions at the Clutha District Council and merged these with Invercargill City. This model would work for all of the councils across all of Otago and Southland for little more than it currently costs Dunedin City Council to run its IT services.
Some fresh thinking needs also to be applied to the stadium and the first of these should be the monopoly that rugby has over it and the grass surface.
Read more

● Ciaran Keogh is a former chief executive of the Clutha District Council, Wakool Shire in the Riverina region of New South Wales, and Environment Southland. He now lives in Dunedin.

****

Crowds had been down right across the five New Zealand franchises but that was a worldwide trend, with fewer people attending events.

### ODT Online Tue, 1 Jul 2014
Rugby: Crowds can’t fall any further – Clark
By Steve Hepburn
The Highlanders met budget for crowds this year but have warned they cannot dip any lower if the franchise is to remain viable. In the eight games the Highlanders hosted at Forsyth Barr Stadium this year, 98,326 people came through the gate, an average crowd of 12,291 per game. [...] A crowd of 11,070 attended the last home game, the win over the Chiefs, a figure that did not exactly delight Highlanders general manager Roger Clark.
Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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