Monthly Archives: July 2011

LGOIMA request – stadium event

The following Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act (LGOIMA) request and the reply was supplied to What if? Dunedin…
All square bracketing in the text below is by the What if? editor.

On 25/07/2011, at 11:54 AM, “peter attwooll” wrote:

Dear Sandy [Graham]

I understand the Dunedin City Council is funding $70,000 towards the ODT’s 150th Birthday celebrations on November 12, 2011. On the Channel 9 News Cr Syd Brown stated that the money was not coming from the ‘stadium budget’, but from another budget.

I would like information on the following:

1. Was this gift initiated by the council or was it a request initiated from Allied Press/ODT?
2. Who authorised the gift within the DCC – both administration and councillor(s)?
3. Did this gift gain approval at a full council meeting? If so, could the minutes to this meeting be supplied along with votes for/against.
4. What budget does this $70,000 come from?
5. What justification is given for $70,000 of public money being given to a private company for essentially their own 150th Birthday Party?
6. What is this $70,000 being spent on?

Yours sincerely

Peter Attwooll

Date: Mon, 25 Jul 2011 14:18:16 +1200
Subject: Re: dcc $70,000 gift to the ODT’s 150th Birthday celebration- OIA Request.

Dear Peter

I will send you a minute extract from the meeting where the matter was considered – FSD from memory. That will provide answers to q2-5.

As to Q6 and Q1 – I will need to ask around and will get that to you as soon as possible but within twenty working days.

I’ll send an extract tomorrow as snowed in [remainder of sentence deleted].


Date: Wed, 27 Jul 2011 14:54:09 +1200
Subject: RE: dcc $70,000 gift to the ODT’s 150th Birthday celebration- OIA Request.

Dear Peter

Please find attached the minute extract and report considered by the Council on 16 May 2011.
I hope that these answer your questions.


EXTRACTS – non public – 2011_05_16 (40.0 KB)
SC360 C36011072614170 (208 KB)


### ODT Online Sat, 25 Jun 2011
150th birthday bash
By Nigel Benson
New Zealand’s oldest daily newspaper will celebrate its 150th anniversary in the country’s newest venue. And everyone in Otago and Southland is invited to the party. The Otago Daily Times will mark its sesquicentennial on November 15 – 150 years to the day after it was founded by William Henry Cutten and Sir Julius Vogel in 1861. To celebrate, locally-owned Allied Press – which publishes the ODT – is throwing the biggest birthday party in Otago’s history, with a free four-hour concert at Forsyth Barr Stadium.

The Dunedin City Council is supporting the event as the opening community concert in the new stadium.

Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Concerts, Economics, People, Politics, Project management, Site

WE ALL SAID IT #DunedinCityCouncil #SHAME


### Last updated 18:39 29/07/2011
Financial crisis for Dunedin City Council
By Mike Houlahan and Wilma McCorkindale – Southland Times and DScene
Dunedin City Council is facing a financial crisis, with two internal reviews warning it faces a $8 million revenue shortfall. Dunedin Mayor Mayor Dave Cull was an angry man when breaking the news, saying “hard choices” would probably need to be made to rescue the city’s financial position.

“Despite earlier suspicions, council has only just ascertained the full extent of this, and has not yet had time to decide on measures to address them. Council needs to pursue that with the utmost urgency.”

At the heart of the city’s fiscal problem lies projected revenues from Dunedin City Holdings Limited – the council’s holding company, which oversees firms such as City Forests Ltd, Delta Utility Services and Aurora Energy Ltd. DCHL has already had to borrow to deliver projected revenues to council. Cull warned that DCHL could become insolvent within a few years if it continued to pay council what was budgeted.
Read more


Dunedin City Council – Media Release

Statement re DCHL and DVML Funding

This item was published on 29 Jul 2011.

Over the past year or so, concerns have been raised about the ability of Council and Council companies to service debt. This raised further questions about communication and governance. As a result two significant reviews have been undertaken by Council.

The first was conducted by the Council’s CCO Liaison Group specifically to address concerns about current information flows between DCHL and the Council.

The second review is of the governance of the Council-owned trading entities: the DCHL companies, DVL and DVML and DCC Property. The aim was to ascertain if and how governance and efficiency could be improved and, if so, what a better governance model might look like. The independent reviewer, Mr Warren [Larsen], was also invited to make any other observations and suggestions he thought pertinent.

To an extent these two reviews overlapped both in terms of area of interest and conclusions. In addition, analysis was done regarding the projections included in the DVML Statement of Intent.

The conclusions include:

• The Council owned companies cannot sustain into the future the level of dividends projected to be paid to Council and which Council has budgeted for. From the next financial year, 2012/2013, there will be a $5 million dollar per annum shortfall from this source.

• The $3 million revenue from DCHL provided for in Dunedin Venues Management Ltd’s Statement of Intent is not sustainable either.

• In total there is an $8 million per annum shortfall in revenue across the “family” of Council Controlled Organisations.

This has largely been caused by the need for increased capital expenditure within the DCHL companies. With fewer funds available, the companies have had to borrow to pay dividends. That is not sustainable. Were DCHL to continue to pay dividends at the rate projected in Council budgets, it could become insolvent within a few years.

• The composition of, and skill-sets on, the DCHL boards needs to better reflect the companies’ core activities.

• Reporting mechanisms from the Council-owned companies to Council need to be greatly improved and made more transparent.

These conclusions have a number of major implications:

• First there is clearly an urgent need for Council to address the funding shortfall. This is an extremely serious priority. The possible options for doing that include reducing Council operating expenditure, reducing or deferring Council capital expenditure, increasing DCHL revenue, and reducing DCHL costs. Whatever option, or more likely combination of options, is chosen, some hard choices will probably need to be made.

• It is clear that this information will also impact significantly on projections previously approved for the repayment of stadium debt. Models are currently being reworked and the impact on stadium debt servicing and repayment will be reported back to the next F S & D committee.

• Secondly, the fact that the information regarding the funding shortfall from DCHL to Council was not communicated to Council in a timely manner indicates seriously inadequate communication mechanisms. This vindicates the need for the CCO Liaison Group enquiry, but also underscores the fact that such a confidential reporting group is neither adequate nor appropriate on an on-going basis.

All Council has done so far is to clearly identify the problems. Despite earlier suspicions Council has only just ascertained the full extent of this and has not yet had time to decide on measures to address them. Council needs to pursue that with the utmost urgency.

Contact Dave Cull on Mayor of Dunedin.

DCC Link

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under CST, DVL, DVML, Economics, People, Politics, Project management, Stadiums

Two architectural images #Dunedin


Images: Elizabeth Kerr

Views from my Pitt Street apartment during the July snow –
(top) Richardson Building; (bottom) Zoology Building roofscape foreground, Commerce Building behind, Richardson left

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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Filed under Architecture, Construction, Design, Geography, Heritage, Innovation, Inspiration, Pics, Site, Urban design, What stadium

Disappearing heritage #Dunedin

Updated post 29.7.13

### DScene 27-7-11 (page 7)
Too many historic icons being destroyed or neglected
By Owen Graham
OPINION Now that [Carisbrook] is no longer required, its owner – the Dunedin City Council – is looking to offer the site for a suitable redevelopment. As part of the exercise, council is making clear to interested parties that a few of the last remnants of the historic grounds’ past ought to be retained for incorporation into future developments. The Exchange area of Dunedin today offers one of the best opportunities for revitalisation yet it is a very confused place . . . nearby, up High St and Rattray St, there are active attempts to remove all traces of the past, be it through active demolition or neglect by intent.
{Continues} #bookmark

DScene 27.7.11 (page 7) Owen Graham NZHPT

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Architecture, Economics, Heritage, People, Politics, Project management, Town planning, Urban design

Central City Plan consultant reports back #Dunedin

Kobus Mentz and the Urbanism Plus team working on the Central City Plan are due to report back to the Council and public on 11 August, with their draft findings.

For those who made the original workshop in June, you’ll know that Kobus and team take a collaborative approach. They have received a huge number of inputs and ideas from a wide range of sources – this will be a great opportunity to view their progress.

We look forward to seeing the draft plan!

The public session for reporting back is on August 11, 6-8pm at the Dunedin Public Art Gallery auditorium.

All welcome.

Please RSVP (for indication of numbers) to Glen Hazelton, Policy Planner (Heritage), Dunedin City Council – phone 03 477 4000, fax 03 474 3451


Related post:
7.6.11 Public Workshop: Dunedin Central City

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Architecture, Design, Economics, Events, Geography, Heritage, Innovation, Inspiration, People, Politics, Project management, Site, Stadiums, Town planning, Urban design, What stadium

City to harbour connectivity

At the meeting, Cr Paul Hudson said the crossing was in the “nice to do” area, rather than being essential. He said he would have to be convinced the idea was necessary before he could support funding.

Should we mention here that Cr Hudson supports the stadium, and has been less than useful in considerations of Logan Park’s redevelopment as it tends to a future of use by professional sports bodies parading as ‘community organisations’.


### ODT Online Wed, 27 Jul 2011
Link bridge plan shelved
By David Loughrey
Nine options for a bridge to connect the Otago harbourside to central Dunedin – including a new proposal that would take pedestrians from the Queens Gardens to the harbourside – received almost no support from city councillors yesterday.
Read more

Report – PEC – 26/07/2011 (PDF, 389.8 KB, new window)
City to Harbour Connectivity

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Economics, Geography, Politics, Urban design

DCC Finance, Strategy and Development Committee – meeting postponed

Agenda – FSD – 25/07/2011 (PDF, 89.2 KB, new window)
Today’s (Monday 25 July 2011) Finance, Strategy and Development Committee meeting has been postponded due to the snow. The meeting will now be held on Thursday 28 July at 1.00 pm in the Auditorium of the Dunedin Public Art Gallery.

Report – FSD – 25/07/2011 (PDF, 1.5 MB, new window)
Stadium Precinct Executive Summary 16
Report – FSD – 25/07/2011 (PDF, 59.9 KB, new window)
Project Gateway
Report – FSD – 25/07/2011 (PDF, 459.9 KB, new window)
Change to Structure to Achieve Regional Economic Development
Report – FSD – 25/07/2011 (PDF, 184.0 KB, new window)
Development Contributions Policy – Schedule of Charges 2011/12
Report – FSD – 25/07/2011 (PDF, 49.7 KB, new window)
Infrastructure Insurance Renewal 2011/12
Report – FSD – 25/07/2011 (PDF, 206.9 KB, new window)
Strategic Risk Fund For Insurance
Report – FSD – 25/07/2011 (PDF, 662.6 KB, new window)
Financial Result – 12 Months to 30 June 2011
Report – FSD – 25/07/2011 (PDF, 1.9 MB, new window)
Council’s Debt Raising Arrangements

FSD Committee Link

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Economics, Geography, Heritage, Politics, Project management, Stadiums, Urban design

Stadium Opening – Friday 5 August

The public are invited to the official opening of the Stadium at University Plaza on Friday 5 August. Those attending must be seated by 6.50am for the hour long celebrations which will begin at 7.00am.

Further details regarding entrances and parking will be available over the next two weeks.


This notice appeared in ODT today, page 4 – Dunedin City Council Noticeboard.
Also see:

What if? Dunedin… has removed any reference to the stadium’s name sponsor from the notice since it’s our understanding that to date the sponsor has made no financial contribution to the stadium project.

We’re prepared to stand corrected if this information is in some way wrong or inaccurate.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Construction, Economics, Events, Media, Politics, Project management, Stadiums

Stadium construction site #Dust #AirPollution

While there might be less of a problem when the Forsyth Barr Stadium was completed, it was an issue with any construction site.

### ODT Online Thu, 21 Jul 2011
Dust from roads and off wheels gets blame in Dunedin air pollution
By Rebecca Fox
Dust from roads and “off the wheels” of vehicles is being blamed for much of central Dunedin’s air pollution. As a result, tighter controls could be placed on the movement of vehicles from construction sites. The Otago Regional Council studied air quality in central Dunedin during 2010 to try to better understand air pollution around its Albany St monitor. It found dust from roads and “off the wheels” of vehicles was a major contributor to air pollution in the area.
Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

1 Comment

Filed under Business, Construction, Media, ORC, People, Project management, Property, Site, Stadiums, Town planning, Urban design

Major Dunedin City Council infrastructure assets NOT INSURED


### ODT Online Sat, 16 Jul 2011
Assets of $2.4b not insured
By Chris Morris
The Dunedin City Council now faces a $2.4 billion hole in its insurance cover, after rejecting “huge” premium increases and dramatically reduced cover for above-ground infrastructure. The decision means roads, bridges, tunnels, viaducts and other pieces of critical infrastructure across Dunedin have also been left without insurance cover in the event of a natural disaster.

That was on top of the $1 billion in pipes and other underground infrastructure assets already left without cover on July 1, after council insurance brokers were unable to renew existing policies.

The latest loss of cover meant the city now had $2.4 billion worth of infrastructure assets without any form of insurance, council financial controller Maree Clarke confirmed late yesterday.
Read more

Related Post:
7.7.11 More than $1 billion of infrastructure assets NOT insured


Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Economics, Geography, Politics, Project management

Another happy camper, not.

The Dunedin City Council’s draft film location fee policy is small-minded action from an increasingly punitive council, Michael Stedman says.

### ODT Online Thu, 14 Jul 2011
Film location fee policy ill considered
By Michael Stedman
Well, well, well, the DCC has done it again! Another ill-considered policy that has the potential to limit growth. The Dunedin City Council has circulated a draft film location fee policy. They have asked for comments regarding the introduction of the policy, which is code for it’s a done deal unless you scream. It appears to me the council operates at two extremes. Both are immensely damaging to the city and both have significant consequences for all of us, burdened as we are with ever-increasing rates.
Read more

• Michael Stedman is the managing-director of NHNZ

Natural History New Zealand
NHNZ makes ground-breaking factual television about people, nature,
adventure, history and science for National Geographic Channels, Discovery Channels including Animal Planet, A&E, NHK and numerous other international broadcasters. A world-leader in high volume 3D documentary production and the leading foreign producer of factual programming out of China, NHNZ is focussed on innovation and revelation in producing unforgettable television.

Related Post:
19.8.11 Genuinely EXCITING


Filed under Economics, Geography, People, Politics

RNZ National, Sunday 17 July

18 July 2011
PLEASE NOTE: Sunday Morning’s temporary producer has explained that Dougal Stevenson requested cancellation of his contribution for 17 July – Dougal will be appearing next Sunday, 24 July. The link will be provided at this post.


### 24 Jul 2011 10:40 am
Notes from the South with Dougal Stevenson
Dougal is worried that Dunedin City Council is having a bunch of very bad ideas.
Audio Ogg Vorbis MP3 (5′20″)

Radio New Zealand National 101FM
Sunday Morning with Chris Laidlaw
Listen on 101 FM or online at


Related Post:
15.7.11 Another happy camper, not.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under People, Politics

Not happy UNTIL . . . #ROS 2011

The Dunedin City Council books have been fully opened for forensic audit and independent investigations of conflicts of interest, governance decisions, council-owned companies, and more have been completed.

One area where satisfaction levels were not improving was respondents’ perception of Dunedin as a thriving city; only 29% agreed it was, the same as last year, but down from 50% in 2006.

### ODT Online Fri, 15 Jul 2011
Residents happier with DCC
By David Loughrey
Dunedin Mayor Dave Cull was wearing a satisfied smile yesterday, following the release of a residents’ opinion survey that showed a sharp increase in public satisfaction with his council. Acting chief executive Athol Stephens was also basking in the glow of a result that showed 63% of residents were satisfied with his staff, up 11% from last year. […] Satisfaction with the overall performance of the council increased significantly, with 46% of respondents satisfied with their council, and 17% dissatisfied, compared with 35% and 38% last year.
Read more

Related Post:
25.4.11 Oh wait, you mean…

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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Filed under Business, Carisbrook, DCC, Democracy, District Plan, Dunedin, Economics, Events, Heritage, Housing, Infrastructure, Media, Museums, New Zealand, People, Pet projects, Politics, Project management, Resource management, Stadiums, Town planning, Transportation

Has DCC Planning lost the plot AGAIN?

### ODT Online Wed, 13 Jul 2011
Call to reject retail development
By Chris Morris
Plans for a multimillion-dollar Green Island retail development should be rejected to help protect Dunedin’s main street experience from a “death by a thousand cuts”, a Dunedin City Council planner says. Irmo Properties Ltd has applied for resource consent to refurbish the rundown Iron Roller Mills Building on Irmo St, Green Island, turning it into a new 4900sq m retail complex with 187 car parks.
Read more


Comment by Barch67 at ODT Online:
If the developer were to re-name it “The Rugby World Cup Retail Development”, it’d be consented by now.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Architecture, Construction, Design, Heritage, Innovation, Politics, Project management, Town planning, Urban design

University of Otago active in national research collaboration

### ODT Online Wed, 13 Jul 2011
New network aims to take innovation to market
By Simon Hartley
Otago has staked a claim as a founding member in a new science and technology commercialisation network with combined annual research funding of $500 million, between several universities and crown research institutes.

With up to 20 projects, mainly involving life sciences, under way from University of Otago research, its intellectual property (IP) subsidiary, Otago Innovation Ltd, is welcoming the KiwiNet initiative for national research collaboration and the “one stop shop” for potential domestic and overseas investors.

Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Innovation, Inspiration

Abhorrent spending on RWC by Dunedin City Council

The council has budgeted $350,000 to pay for tournament planning and events, excluding stadium costs. ODT Online (7 July)

We will assume this sum doesn’t include the aggregated hours spent by Council staff on all planning and events management.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under DVML, Economics, Politics, Project management, Site, Sport, Stadiums

More than $1 billion of infrastructure assets NOT insured

Existing insurance arrangements expired on July 1, leaving all underground infrastructure assets – such as water and wastewater pipes – without cover. Some above-ground infrastructure assets – such as pumps and treatment plants, but not buildings – were also without cover.

### ODT Online Thu, 7 Jul 2011
No insurance cover for $1 billion of assets
By Chris Morris
More than $1 billion in underground infrastructure across Dunedin is without insurance against natural disasters, after international reinsurers baulked at the risk after the Christchurch earthquakes. Dunedin City Council acting chief executive Athol Stephens yesterday confirmed brokers acting for the council had been unable to secure cover against earthquakes, landslips and other disasters.
Read more

More Recent:
16.7.11 Major Dunedin City Council infrastructure assets NOT INSURED
The Dunedin City Council now faces a $2.4 billion hole in its insurance cover.


Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Economics, Geography, Politics, Project management

Local government finances

Are many councils about to hit the wall financially and what impact will that have on the rates you pay?

### Monday 4 July 2011 at 09:08
Nine To Noon with Kathryn Ryan
Are many councils about to hit the wall financially?
Larry N. Mitchell is an independent finance and policy consultant and Lawrence Yule is President of Local Government New Zealand and Hastings Mayor.
Audio Ogg Vorbis MP3 (27′05″)

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Economics, Geography, Politics, Stadiums

Business as usual for DCC councillors

The following item appeared as “Comment” in the printed and digital editions of the ODT (page 4) – at ODT Online it featured as “News: Dunedin | DCC” and “Home » News » Dunedin”. The ODT Online editor treated the column as NEWS rather than Opinion.

### ODT Online Sat, 2 Jul 2011
DCC: Dysfunction or show of ‘co-operative spirit’?
By David Loughrey
A new visitor to the public gallery at the Dunedin City Council’s meeting this week might have wondered what they had walked into.

The meeting was notable for what one councillor described as “robust debate” by “strong-willed individuals”, or what could also be described as some bitter sniping between opponents.

Both of those views – and some quite different analyses – came through when councillors were asked what they thought of last Monday’s council meeting, and behaviour at the council table about nine months into the triennium.

Mr Cull described councillors at the meeting as “displaying an admirable co-operative spirit”.

Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Economics, People