Monthly Archives: January 2013

Who? 2010 electioneering

References supplied.

Blog entry: Dave Cull for Dunedin City Mayor
Monday, August 23, 2010 at 2:09 PM
TAKING OUR FUTURE BACK
By Dave Cull

Dunedin is wonderful city, with a fantastic future. But right now that future is vulnerable: vulnerable economically, environmentally and socially. Dunedin’s community has never been more disillusioned with how Council makes decisions, how it listens, or not, to the community, how Council takes responsibility, or not, for major spending decisions with long-term consequences. These are consequences that include maxing out Councils [sic] and Council company debt, so that the companies may not be able to pay expected dividends to the ratepayers in the next few years! It is that bad.

The challenges ahead are considerable. But we can achieve that fantastic future. We have to. We can achieve it if we replace secrecy with transparent processes and provide responsible leadership that listens and is up-front with the community about debt and costs. If we do that we can turn disillusion into a shared and inclusive vision for the city.

So imagine what YOU want Dunedin to be like in 20 years.

Imagine Dunedin with:
• a thriving economy featuring high value jobs and businesses that keep families living here
• suburbs of well-built, healthy houses
• streets of beautiful, rejuvenated heritage buildings being put to productive use
• renewable resources being utilized for lower cost energy.
• measures already taken to address climate change and peak oil
• well maintained civic amenities not saddled by a mountain of debt that ratepayers have to repay
• top notch infrastructure including comprehensive Broadband coverage everywhere
• a smooth coordinated public transport system and cycle and pedestrian network
• an accessible and well-protected surrounding environment full of nature’s treasures

Previous Councils and this current one, have not tried to imagine such a future and not planned to achieve it. They have ticked the boxes of bland Council vision statements, reacted to pet ideas dished up by special interest groups, and lurched from one to the next, piling a huge debt on all our shoulders in the process. At the same time some of our suburbs are mouldering from neglect; our digital infrastructure is falling behind other NZ communities; jobs are ebbing away and families are leaving for greener pastures. I and my team want to help turn that all around.
Read more

****

During the 2010 Dunedin Mayoral race the local newspaper ran this:

### ODT Online Tue, 7 Sep 2010
Mayoral Profile: Dave Cull
By David Loughrey
Dunedin city councillor Dave Cull is about to end his first term on the local authority, and has put his hand up for the council’s top job. With nine candidates, including himself, on his Greater Dunedin ticket, success could see him heading a group with a majority, on a council more recently made up of 15 independents. But he says that would be a good thing for a city that needs a “collegial” approach to reining in debt, and attracting business and people to Dunedin.

Dave Cull
Age: 60.
Family/marital status: Married, two daughters.
Occupation: Writer.
Council experience: One term as councillor.
Running for: Mayor and council.

Why are you standing?
I’m standing because when I put my hand up for council in 2007, I realised it was going to be something I was either going to be in for the long haul or not, so I’m in it for the long haul.
I’m standing for the mayoralty because I see the need for far more engaging and inclusive leadership than is being shown at the moment.

Tell me then, how you would go about engaging and including.
Well I think the context is that the current council and mayor …

Of which you’re one …
… of which I’m one, but the majority has not engaged genuinely, has not listened genuinely to the public, and has, worse than that, not got a cohesive, connected view of the projects the council is involved in. They tend to be isolated from one another, and the impact on one another is not fully appreciated till the negatives hit, I suppose. So I see a need for developing a much more future-focused vision for the city that looks at everything in a connected way.
Read more

****

Blog entry: Dave Cull for Dunedin City Mayor
Tuesday, September 14, 2010 at 2:02 PM
Ratepayers Association Questionnaire
By Dave Cull

The Greater Dunedin Team Answers Ratepayers Association Questions.

Greater Dunedin candidates declined to answer the Ratepayers Assoc questionnaire, the answers to which are to be published in D-Scene. Framed as either/or questions, the requested yes/no answers would oversimplify the issues with many of the questions. More importantly Ratepayers chairperson Lyndon Weggery acknowledged the Association would edit and “analyse” longer answers and distribute the results privately to Ratepayers Association and ex-Stop the Stadium members. We have no confidence that would be done in good faith. Mr Weggery (also on the committee of ex-STS) has signed STS newsletters containing untrue claims and misrepresentations about Greater Dunedin mayoral candidate Dave Cull’s views on the new stadium, and endorsing another candidate. Dishonesty and partisan commentary are incompatible with a purportedly independent survey.

However all the Greater Dunedin team recognise voters’ interest in our views and their right to hear them expressed publicly. We wholeheartedly promote transparency and also believe our views and positions on most subjects, while diverse, probably resonate with most of the membership of both the Ratepayers Association and what was Stop the Stadium. To that end we have each fully answered the questions posed by the ratepayers Association and posted them on our website: http://www.greaterdunedin.co.nz/. We encourage readers to read them there.
Greater Dunedin’s aim is to engage with and serve the interests and views of the whole Dunedin community. We welcome feedback, ideas, concerns and comments from all.

Following are the Ratepayers Association questions and my answers.
Continues at greaterdunedin.blogspot

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

12 Comments

Filed under Business, DCC, DCHL, Economics, Hot air, Media, Name, People, Politics, Project management, Stadiums

Pecuniary interest: Crs Wilson and Thomson in events fund debate

UPDATED 30.1.13

Where is DVML’s report to DCC ? Go to ODT 30.1.13

### ODT Online Tue, 29 Jan 2013
Call for new stadium events fund backed
By Chris Morris
Dunedin city councillors support a new $400,000 annual fighting fund to lure more major concerts, and the millions of dollars of extra spending that comes with them, to Dunedin.
Cr Lee Vandervis questioned whether stadium events delivered additional economic benefits or largely moved money around within Dunedin. [DVML chief executive] Darren Burden disputed the latter, citing an economic impact report on Sir Elton John’s stadium concert, estimated to have contributed $14 million to the city’s economy. The exact figure could be disputed, but with half the 35,000-strong crowd for the show coming into Dunedin from elsewhere, returns for the city were ”in that sort of ballpark”, he said.

Crs Kate Wilson and Richard Thomson agreed, saying their businesses had recorded substantial increases in turnover at the time of Sir Elton’s concert, and other businesses would, too, in future.
Go to ODT 30.1.13

Cr Syd Brown hoped the ”modest” extra investment would allow the stadium, and the city, to ”punch above our weight”. Other councillors also supported the move, including deputy mayor Chris Staynes, who said even if the economic impact of shows like Sir Elton’s was only half what was claimed, it was still ”a pretty good investment”.
Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

133 Comments

Filed under Business, Concerts, DCC, DVML, Economics, Events, Media, Name, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Site, Sport, Stadiums

DCC Draft Annual Plan 2013/14 for consultation #RIOTmaterial

Email received from Lee Vandervis this evening.

My overview regarding the Annual Plan that has gone out for consultation today is that little has changed.

Rates rises continue to be disguised, first by getting DCHL to borrow up to $23 million on our account, continuing to take more than policy allows from the Waipori Fund [proposed relaxing Waipori rules to justify], continued significant underspending on drains, and now buying $3 million in paid-up share capital of DVML – yet another multi-million dollar gift to bail out overspent Stadium operations.

The official result – the long heralded 4% rates rise.

I believe the real rates rise to be somewhere between 25% and 30%, as the DCC continues to amass all kinds of liabilities and debt that will have to be paid for in the future. CEO Paul Orders has made real gains finding significant DCC staff efficiencies, but most are simply going to bail out Stadium operational inefficiencies.

Stadium annual drains on the ratepayer now include:
● $1,666,000 rates subsidy via a ‘Stadium Differential’ [LTP 2013/14 – 2021/22 p8]
● $750,000 annual ‘Stadium Community Access’ fund
● $725,000 ‘Stadium Capital Repayment’ fund for each of the next 4 years
● Annual $400,000 ‘Stadium Event Attraction’ fund.

The Dunedin City Council is now going to buy the events that the Stadium was supposed to attract by itself. These further Stadium subsidies will only prolong the currently unaffordable wasteful Stadium operations, and entrench the directorships, fat contracts, and rugby cronyism that plague current Stadium costs.

If anyone can think of any other type of ‘fund’ that might possibly go to the Stadium please don’t tell the DCC or we will shortly be paying that annually too.

From an email I sent to senior staff and the Mayor last Monday:
“I have been uncomfortable with the timing and presentation advantages enjoyed by DVML in being perfectly positioned to come into our workshop and present and pluck us for millions yet again, but I accept that their issues needed to be addressed.”

Many Annual Plan issues have not been addressed but they have been bought into.

The predetermined Plan has just happened again.

DCC homepage portrait nightmares 6.1.13 (screenshot)

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

96 Comments

Filed under Business, DCC, DCHL, DVL, DVML, Economics, Events, Name, ORFU, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Site, Sport, Stadiums, Town planning, Urban design

Sunday Star Times Business News: Woops DCC

### Stuff Online Last updated 11:52 27/01/2013
Auckland councillors reveal interests
By Rob Stock
The shutters of secrecy around the personal commercial interests of elected councillors and local board members are beginning to lift at the country’s largest local council. In May last year Auckland mayor Len Brown pledged to the Sunday Star-Times that Auckland Council would work towards the establishment of a register of pecuniary interests of councillors, something other major councils have long provided to their ratepayers.
Read more

Near the end of the article we love the reference to “the heavily indebted Dunedin City Council” being without a public register of pecuniary interests of councillors… Something “major councils have long provided to their ratepayers” (see Christchurch, Wellington, Tauranga, and now Auckland).

It’s the remainder of the sentence about Dunedin that really amuses, but let’s reproduce the paragraphs which implicate DCC.

In fact, the lack of registers at some councils – the heavily indebted Dunedin City Council was another without a public register – seems in direct contravention of the Local Government Act that requires councils to operate “in an open, transparent, and democratically accountable manner”.

Local Government New Zealand told the Government it believes the model set by MPs needed to apply to local councillors, arguing that it would “strengthen public confidence in public bodies like local government”, and it turned out that Auckland City Council was supporting the call.

Best we demand a register of Dunedin City councillors’ interests well before the October 2013 local body elections – make the request via public submissions on the Draft Annual Plan 2013/14, and DCC public forums.

DCC homepage portrait nightmares 6.1.13 (screenshot)

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

13 Comments

Filed under Business, Construction, DCC, DCHL, DVL, DVML, Economics, Geography, Media, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Site, Sport, Stadiums, Town planning, Urban design

Pike River, Department of Internal Affairs #skippingthebusiness

Comment received.

Martin Legge
January 14, 2013 at 8:57 am

Spare a thought for all the Pike River victims and their families.

Maarten Quivooy was the National Safety Manager at Dept of Labour at the time of the Pike River tragedy and during the commission of enquiry that followed which resulted in DOL Management being heavily criticised. As we now know, Quivooy, like a rat off a sinking ship, left the DOL before the Commission made its findings public.

Quivooy grabbed the top Gambling Compliance job at DIA ahead of an incumbent. In light of this it would be interesting to read his CV, his references from DOL and hear his responses given to the DIA selection panel – “Maarten can you please outline your achievements with the DOL”

Quivooy is all hat and no cowboy!!!

Related Posts and Comments:
30.12.12 Internal Affairs is a whole other planet #whitecollarcrime #DIArorts
18.11.12 Martin Legge: DIA audit criticism #pokierorts #coverup
13.11.12 Martin Legge replies to Sunday Star-Times story #DIA #coverup
26.10.12 Department of Internal Affairs (DIA) – CULPABLE #pokierorts
3.10.12 DScene: Russell Garbutt seeks DIA file to Crown Law #PokieRorts
27.8.12 DIA’s political cover-up of TTCF and ORFU rorts
12.8.12 DIA reshuffle: new investigation teams, money laundering, criticism
25.7.12 Martin Legge backgrounds TTCF (pokie trust) and Portage and Waitakere Licensing Trusts #DIA
15.7.12 Martin Legge responds to media stories on Murray Acklin, TTCF and DIA
26.5.12 DIA media release
22.4.12 DIA, OAG, TTCF and Otago Rugby swim below the line

Use the search box at right to find more items connected to professional rugby, pokie rorts, TTCF, ORFU and DCC.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

85 Comments

Filed under Business, DCC, Economics, Geography, Media, Name, ORFU, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Site, Sport, Stadiums

Editorial spin, disagrees?!

The Editor’s reply (ODT 23.1.13):
Russell Garbutt: Thanks for your comments but we don’t agree with them.

[Email]

From: Russell and Bev Garbutt
Sent: Tuesday, 22 January 2013 10:46 a.m.
To: ‘editor@odt.co.nz’
Subject: Letter for publication

[Contact details deleted. -Eds]

The Editor
Otago Daily Times
Dunedin

Dear Sir

Your editorial on the urgent need for an austerity budget for Dunedin is too little too late.

For years now at Council Plan consultation meetings also attended by your reporters, the financial stupidity of the Council’s decisions have been graphically pointed out by a long line of submitters. The practice of Council owned companies being forced to borrow to pay dividends which you now describe as being “worse than poor” was emphasised by a large number of submitters, but largely ignored by the ODT for many years.

While ultimately all of the spending decisions made by the Council are those of the Councillors – many clearly out of their depth – the weight of public opinion assisted by informed and investigative stories by the City’s only daily paper, has no small part to play in what has happened in this town over recent years. It is hard to see why the ODT has failed to meet its obligations or role in this regard. Many believe that it is because the ODT is a strong supporter of the stadium which has caused a major part of this debt, and of its proponents and major user.

While the ODT has adopted a position of supporting the new rugby stadium, even now that the full costs of the stadium are more or less known, your position is that you appear to be supporting the establishment of a significant fund to subsidise the use of the stadium – despite your reluctant acknowledgement that while the fund will cost the ratepayers dearly, there is no believable data that shows any tangible benefit.

I look forward to the ODT being part of the process in holding those that have made the decisions that have put Dunedin into these astronomical levels of debt responsible and accountable – but I’m not holding my breath.

Russell Garbutt

Read Russell’s comments in reply here.

Related Post and Comments:
22.1.13 ‘Liability Cull’ and council chasten for election year

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

19 Comments

Filed under Business, DCC, DCHL, DVL, DVML, Economics, Media, Name, ORFU, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Site, Sport, Stadiums, Town planning, Urban design

Proposed hotel: Council and submitters await detailed information

The committee planned to invite hundreds of submitters to have another say on the new information, before resuming the hotel’s resource consent hearing in March.

### ODT Online Wed, 23 Jan 2013
Further dialogue on hotel
By Chris Morris
Plans for a $100 million five-star hotel on Dunedin’s waterfront are to go back to submitters for another round of public consultation. It was confirmed yesterday the Dunedin City Council’s hearings committee has requested more information from Betterways Advisory Ltd, which wants to build the 28-storey hotel and apartment tower.
The details were contained in a letter from committee chairman Cr Colin Weatherall to Betterways, dated January 17 and released to the Otago Daily Times by Cr Weatherall yesterday. Betterways director Steve Rodgers said when contacted he was still considering its contents, but was frustrated and concerned by the length of time the consent process was taking.
Read more

Proposed hotel (model) ODT 2.12.12Cr Weatherall’s letter to Betterways said extra information was required for a “proper understanding” of the hotel and its impact on the immediate surroundings and wider environment.

Information wanted by 15 February:
● An assessment of the environmental effects of construction and wind disturbance arising from the hotel
● A report from a recognised landscape expert
● Additional computer-generated images showing the hotel from locations around the city
● Betterways Advisory Ltd must physically demonstrate the hotel’s height on site in a way that was visible from across the harbour, perhaps by using a tethered balloon.

Image: ODT Online 2.12.12 [screenshot]

Related Posts and Comments:
28.12.12 ‘Low-rises are great for the community and the residents’
24.12.12 A Christmas Tale
21.12.12 Proposed hotel – ODT graphic indicates building height
19.12.12 Hearing for proposed hotel – competencies, conflicts of interest?
16.12.12 Proposed Dunedin Hotel #height
10.12.12 Proposed hotel, 41 Wharf St – “LEARNING FROM LAS VEGAS”
7.12.12 Proposed hotel – Truescape shenanigans
6.12.12 Dunedin Hotel – revised design
2.12.12 Roy Rogers and Trigger photographed recently at Dunedin
26.11.12 Proposed hotel, 41 Wharf Street – indicative landscape effects
20.11.12 City planner’s report recommends against consent for hotel
10.11.12 Dunedin Hotel, 41 Wharf Street (LUC 2012-212)
4.10.12 DUNEDIN: We’re short(!) but here is some UK nous…
8.9.12 Waterfront Hotel #Dunedin (Applicant names?)
7.9.12 Waterfront hotel: DCC to notify resource consent application
23.6.12 Mis(t)apprehension: website visits, not bookings?
16.5.12 Dunedin Hotel

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

30 Comments

Filed under Architecture, Business, Construction, DCC, Design, Economics, Geography, Heritage, Media, Name, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Site, Stadiums, Town planning, Urban design