Draft Dunedin City Transport Strategy

Read the draft strategy here. [DCC webpage and links]

Comment received.

BlueBottle
Submitted on 2013/09/03 at 1:28 pm

Lee Vandervis was very impressive at the transport strategy hearing on Monday. Lee challenged all the ridiculous assumptions that the strategy is based on. He did this using factual well researched arguments. Council staff were forced to back down on many points because there was no factual basis for their conclusions. Lee’s performance was remarkable because there was one of him against 4 Councillors and the Transport Planning/City Development staff who had a whole weekend to find ways to respond to Lee’s challenges. Although Lee helped to make some improvements to the strategy, the thing is still deeply flawed and will be harmful for Dunedin if it is accepted by the whole Council.
The Network Operating Plan (fig. 24) has been kept quiet by the DCC and the ODT. The plan is to make a big chunk of the CBD either car-less or mostly car-less. The methods of hindering motor vehicles haven’t been described but will be achieved with total bans from some streets as well as removing parking and restrictions on turning and entry. Another plan is to fiddle with the timing of traffic lights so as to cause intolerable delays to motorists. Have a look to see which streets are affected. While in their vision they see hoards of cyclists and pedestrians, more likely the CBD will become empty and turned into an economic dead-zone. The Network Operating Plan and the rest of the Transport Strategy are among the biggest threats that Dunedin faces.

Developing a Network Operating Plan [DCC]

Figure 24. Draft Network Operating Plan for the central cityFigure 24. Draft Network Operating Plan for the central city

Email received.
Tuesday, September 03, 2013 11:05 PM

—— Forwarded Message
From: Lee Vandervis
Date: Sun, 01 Sep 2013 09:06:00 +1200
To: Wendy Collard, Sarah Connolly, Emerson Yeoman, Sue Bidrose, Sandy Graham, Paul Orders
Cc: Kate Wilson, Andrew Noone, Jinty MacTavish, Teresa Stevenson
Conversation: Draft Transport Strategy Hearing additional data requested.
Subject: Re: Draft Transport Strategy Hearing additional data requested.

Ta Wendy,

Questions as follows:

Can I see Data to justify claims of:

1 – significant car ownership increase in the last 15 years/many Dunedin households now do not have access to a car. [A graph would be ideal]
2 – reduced fatalities and serious accidents [increasing safety] when transferring from automobile to pedestrian and cycling modes of transport [Elvik’s opinion on safety in numbers is not data and suggests only possibility with very large numbers of transfer not possible in a hilly city]
3 – increasing fossil fuel prices since 1974 “rising fuel costs” “Rising fuel prices are likely to lead to changes not only in travel behaviour and people’s choice of transport mode” “Assumption 1: The cost of fuel will continue to increase”
4 – increasing fuel efficiency of cars since 1974
5 – “much of car travel in Dunedin [or anywhere else] is non-essential”
6 – “other options are available for most trips”
7 – “deaths/serious injury of vulnerable road users [cyclists pedestrians] around schools” and “Safety problems at the school gate” “The research highlights that the transitory nature of traffic around schools has tended to hide the risks this situation presents to all users, but especially to children.”
8 – “poor provision for other modes and little congestion has led to high crash rates”
9 – “In part due to wide, high-speed urban street environments (such as the one-way system, Andersons Bay Road, Princes Street, and Hillside Road) and poor provision for other modes (such as buses, walking and cycling), road safety has suffered in Dunedin”
10 – “provision for private motor vehicles has also meant amenity, pedestrian connectivity and, in some instances, surrounding land use value has suffered”
11 – “Demand for cheap, convenient, and consistent on and off-street parking availability is no longer a realistic expectation with Dunedin’s modern high level of car use”
12 – “despite the fact that many children would prefer to cycle, scooter or walk to school”
13 – “it appears the cost of transport fuel will continue to rise for the foreseeable future. This is already having an effect on the way people are choosing to travel.”?

If reliable supporting data is not available, then these unsubstantiated claims and resultant aim to spend $47 million on cycling infrastructure should be removed from the Draft.

Kind regards,
Lee

——————————–

On 30/08/13 5:44 PM, “Wendy Collard” wrote:

Hi Lee

The deliberations have now finished. Kate has asked if you could please have the questions that you require to be answered be [sic] to staff by 12 noon on Sunday.

The hearing is going to carry on at 1pm on Monday as Public Forum has now been cancelled.

Regards

Wendy Collard
Governance Support Officer
Dunedin City Council
50 The Octagon, Dunedin; PO Box 5045, Moray Place, Dunedin 9058, New Zealand
Telephone: 03 474 3374, Fax: 03 474 3594

Related Posts and Comments:
30.8.13 Transport Strategy: Is this responsible local government?
29.8.13 The Don, imagines . . .
4.8.13 World War I memorial project
24.11.11 Dunedin buses: ORC or DCC
8.7.13 Bloody $tupid cycleways and Cull’s electioneering . . .
28.3.13 DCC Draft Annual Plan 2013/14: Portobello Harington Point…
8.3.13 Stupid bid for two-way highway ditched for now #DCC

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

239 Comments

Filed under Business, DCC, Democracy, Design, Economics, Geography, Hot air, Media, Name, New Zealand, ORC, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Site, Stadiums, Tourism, Town planning, University of Otago, Urban design, What stadium

239 responses to “Draft Dunedin City Transport Strategy

  1. While in their vision they see hoards of cyclists and pedestrians…WOO HOOO!!! I am not really a hoarder, more a collector, but eager to see what these people have!
    Seems an odd thing to happen, all the same.

  2. BlueBottle

    owainjmorris, there were definitely lots of them. To get that many cyclists and pedestrians in their vision I think they would have had to have been hoarding them.

  3. Peter

    Irrespective of what each councillor might want in terms of this transport strategy, Lee’s ‘Devil’s Advocate’ role is useful…. even if some of them find it a pain in the arse and ‘want to move on’.
    Assumptions and assertions always have to be backed up with solid, objective facts. Always.

  4. Peter

    I guess that is where things like the negativity/aggressive label come in.
    Funnily, I remember Richard Walls going on about people pushing ‘pet projects’….. as if he didn’t have his own. I doubt whether you’d meet many/any politicians who don’t have their own p p’s which they want to run with when they attain power. The human condition to push your own barrow?

    • Slimy candidates are starting to distribute lies lies and more lies. A colleague was telling me about Rachel Elder’s pamphlet – not good enough to line the budgie cage with, if they had one. All claims by Elder are preposterous (might get it for scanning tomorrow).

  5. ben

    The biggest problem as both Chamber and Lee have alluded is the entire process has been hijacked by a bunch of academic environmentalist nutters, who spend endless time on the tax payer dollar (when they are meant to be researching! / teaching!) preparing endless mind numbing argument in support of their cycling hobby horse and net result is a council captured by a vociferous minority at $47m to boot!

    • As indeed Council was caught by the minority of GOB stadium promoters. ben, you are correct in all respects. How many of the Dunedin public can work this out, I wonder.

    • These cycling and public transport True Believers are as much of a threat to prudent planning as the Harland & Co pushers of harbourside gentrification, cafes and apartments. Like we’re keen-as to sit around under picturesque sun umbrellas outside waterside cafes, freezing our bits off.
      Coincidentally (?) isn’t that the same picture as is being painted for the heritage warehouses necessitating/justifying large-scale road re-routing because it’s so much safer crossing a two-way street than a one-way one, for all those thousands of us who are going to
      (a) abandon the cafes and craft shops (forget what other businesses are going to bring us cantering into this new precinct) in the rest of town, or
      (b) eat twice as many friands, drink twice as much coffee, buy twice as many hand-crafted shopping bags to hold all the extra goods we buy just because there’s a new precinct to eat and shop in.
      (c) move out of our apartments and flats and houses to move into the new apartments in the refurbished buildings.

      How come there are so many people telling us about all the people who want to use bicycles instead of cars? And so few saying they are busting to start using cycles as their main transport? And so many car sales yards with trade-ins on new[er] cars but so few cycle sales yards.

      And so few bikes chained to lamp-posts with “For Sale $—” compared with private cars with “for sale” signs in the back window.

      Aw shucks, I’ve just realised – it’s because of all the people who want to sell their cars, and a bike is .for sale for mere moments before it’s snapped up by one of the converts!

  6. JimmyJones

    ben: it isn’t just the academic environmentalist nutters that are causing this problem, it is also our Enviro-Nazi DCC councillors together with their activist DCC staff. I don’t mean just the obvious ones like Jinty MacTavish and Fliss Butcher, but there are the more devious ones like Dave Cull, Kate Wilson, Teresa Stevenson and probably others.
    You might be surprised to learn that failed Greater Dunedin councillor candidates (one at least) have been making decisions as part of Jinty’s DCC Sustainability Panel. Also council staff have provided funding to Jinty’s helpers at Sustainable Dunedin City (SDC) – an organisation that she helped to create. The treasurer of SDC is a DCC staff member (as of 2012, probably still is).
    They all have common features of religious-type zealotry, and they love telling us that we are all doomed to suffer a variety of catastrophes, and so we all have to do what they say. In using the term Enviro-Nazi, I should recognise that not everyone that cares about the environment is a Nazi and only some of them want to eliminate motorised transport from the face of the earth and turn Dunedin into a neo-hippy commune. In fact Sustainability (the political movement; aka Sustainable Development, aka Agenda 21) is a lot broader than just extreme environmentalism; it includes a number of other things, none of which help the DCC to make good transport decisions.

  7. JimmyJones, you make a good point when you put together the terms “religious-type zealotry” and “Enviro-Nazi” and point out the method of controlling others by repetitions of variations on “we are all doomed to suffer a variety of catastrophes, and so we all have to do what they say”.
    Emotionalism costumed as science.

  8. To me it looks like the big mover in the last 3 years has been Jinty MacTavish. Cull has hidden his light fairly much under the bushel. It is fairly obvious now that the “Enviro-Nazi” element led by Jinty has forged a serious hold on the place. Fliss has moved on, but Kate Wilson hopes to stay. I don’t know about the “hamster” or Staynes but the aspirant Elder fits the mold. Hawkins the ‘green’ if on council will fit as well. Then there is Stevenson as a convert to the cause. Put that lot together and it will be all go for Jinty’s agenda. Forget about any welcome to drilling or anything to do with fossil fuels. Industry, unless it is alternative types will be discouraged, sack cloth and ashes will be in. If she could get a big enough ‘flat iron’ to iron Dunedin flat she would, then cycles would be compulsory for everyone under 65, and those over would need a Dr’s certificate to be excluded. The budgets would become irrelevant as merely a distraction. Saving the planet will be her destiny and Dunedin her vehicle. Silly? Of course it is, but then so are they. The frightening thing is that they could end up with the control.

    • At a mayoral forum on Tuesday (not public) there was major concern expressed at the threat of a GD run council be several candidates. Unfortunately Cull couldn’t attend, he had council business (as did Vandervis).

      There will be more taking to task tonight at the Fortune forum. And it’s just warming up, there’s more in the pipeline.

      This could be a defining election for Dunedin, whichever way it goes. GD mayor+majority is a serious risk.

  9. Peter

    Interestingly, on the news tonight there was a long item, reporting from the Pacific Leaders’ Forum, where they are having to deal with the effects of the sea level rising, attributing it to climate change. The leaders of those small countries concerned are in no doubt their nations are steadily being inundated. I guess they live there to know.
    Talking about ‘Enviro-Nazis’ seems to me to be extreme. Some of the comments here are attributing extremism to certain people on council. The shoe seems to be equally fitting here with some comments. More rational discussion is needed. Don’t let our own misgivings about GD lead to wholesale condemnation of everything they seem to stand for. That is not fair.

    • The Site thought twice about the Hitler and KdF analogy provided lately because no-one standing for council deserves that slur – but that is the contributor’s offering on ‘brand’ and influence. There are other ways to make the same points. Provocation is what it is, and we have allowed Rob’s comment(s) to stand as received.

      Personally, I note Jinty has been using her ‘freshness’ (joke) on the old men of council since she arrived – Noone fell for it, so did Weatherall et al. Never think she’s an innocent, she has a machine or is one. Old fools and whores, inverted commas.

      I’ve never voted for Jinty and don’t intend to start.
      Obnoxious. Her backers include UoO’s Janet Stephenson and more senior academics, none of which I would trust in a dark alley (Janet excepted). Have they been in business, supported their workers through thick and thin… have they supported a family by dependence on benefits rather than their up-scale and cosy university senior salaries ??!! What they are proposing for Council is money-hungry and that means rates increases and vulnerable low-income members of the public getting hurt.

      The muck that exists ‘environmentally’ at the university and in our township needs to be handed to ‘bomb disposal’. Only a month to defuse.

      This is a small town, we know who these people/stirrers/political hazards are, gunning to run DCC. Plus we have the gullible public who refuse to understand what DCC is or will become. Name and shame.

  10. The matter of these small islands and imminent sea rise is heaven sent for the AGW folk. But despite there being no measurable sea rise these islands are still highlighted as vulnerable. What is never talked about is the fact that these islands might in fact be sinking. Not a fashionable aspect but it may be so all the same. We all know how fractious the whole Pacific rim is, if one considered the events of just the last twenty years, you can start at Alaska, Japan, Indonesia, and of course our own little ‘shakey isles’. So who’s to say that there hasn’t been some re-adjustment with some of these lesser islands. Who knows? Who asks?

    • Don’t make me think of ‘Jocelyn’ (Harris) and her sea rise panic.

    • Mick

      These islands are coral atolls – they are constantly being replenished with coral deposits. There is little chance of their disappearing through sea level rise. The do get infrequent typhoons and occasional periods of inundation – as one might expect with low atolls.

      Their main environmental problems is inadequate supplies of potable water; pollution of Majuro lagoon from household waste and discharges from fishing vessel. That is what they should be dealing with.

      These people are ‘chanchers’ – i.e. out for the main change with their begging bowls. There are only about 70,000 people all up living on this group. At worst being more or less U.S dependencies i.e. a constitutional government in free association with the US; the Compact of Free Association entered into force on 21 October 1986 and the Amended Compact entered into force in May 2004, the US could take care of the whole lot of them should it become a problem.

  11. JimmyJones

    Peter: if you believe that you and me burning fossil fuels is the cause of the sea level rising in the vicinity of the Marshall Islands (which I don’t), then the question is will they be any better off if the DCC decides to prevent or discourage cars from using the Octagon, George St, Princes St, Great King St, Moray Place, Cumberland St, Lower Stuart St, Anzac Ave, Dundas, Union, Albany, Leith, Hanover, Dowling Streets? See the map above for more. I doubt the Marshall Islanders would see any difference if all the people of Dunedin made a sacrifice and stopped using their cars, trucks and vans (or even all New Zealanders). Dave Cull knows this, but the point of it is ceremonial – a ritualistic sacrifice as a way of us showing the world how dedicated we are to the sacred principles of Sustainable Development. The annoying thing is that the people of Dunedin have not been asked about the sacrifices that we would be asked (or forced) to make. These people do not want us to have a choice, that is why I think they deserve being called “Nazi”. Probably, Sustainability-Nazi is a more fitting description, but it doesn’t have the same impact as Enviro-Nazi. The Transport Strategy is an extreme step and deserves an extreme response. Also, because of various manipulations, very few people seem to be aware of the implications of the Transport Strategy. Unless the non-Enviro-Nazi councillors start to pay attention, it will be approved by a council meeting in a few weeks.

    • To get the message out about the draft transport strategy I suggest a few of you get writing opinion pieces and letters to the ODT editor – don’t depend on online comments here or at ODT Online to be awareness raisers.
      If ratified by council the strategy is NOT a statutory or regulatory document but when notified and when components of it get shoved into the district plan make sure you make submissions, or we’re stuffed.

  12. Peter

    It’s not the use of the word ‘Nazi’ that worries me. Sometimes the description fits in terms of an analogy of how power is used by some groups. It’s just that I can’t see how people you mention, who have concerns about climate change and its impact on the world, are ‘bad’ people. Like ‘Nazis’. You might disagree with them by being climate change deniers. That’s your choice. But, please, don’t ‘villainise’ these people. They don’t deserve this.

    I have great admiration for environmental groups like Greenpeace who work tirelessly for a better world. Do we also put down groups like this one too?

    I do not claim to be an expert in this area – far from it – but I do see a world with greater and what seem more frequent and freakish, climatic events. That makes me take notice and have a wait and see approach to see if worrisome patterns are indeed forming.

    I also think it is rather harsh to call these Pacific Islanders some kind of ‘freeloaders’…..by people who have so much more in a material sense. Also, whether you believe their islands are ‘sinking’ or just being inundated by ‘infrequent’ storms is beside the point. They are in trouble and deserve a humanitarian response.

    Jimmy. I don’t think the world is going to collapse, as such, if we don’t do our bit in Dunedin. I think the point is we play our part as world citizens.

    • Peter, it’s the sheer cost of what the transport strategy represents —profound cost. Same arguments apply as for the hijacking of DCC so to ensure ratepayers and residents met the extraordinary cost of the stadium. Minty-jinty, Dull-dave and the GfrickingD crew have no finance or business heads. We say we want a commonsense core service council – that will not happen while people accept the greenwash and all the associated bug-eyed crap that goes with it. You want Dunedin’s old pipes replaced for water and waste, just forget it because you’re paying $47m for cycleways that the majority of Dunedin people will never use – and that’s simply for starters.

  13. Mick

    Peter
    September 5, 2013 at 9:39 pm

    You say — ‘think it is rather harsh to call these Pacific Islanders some kind of ‘freeloaders’…. Also, whether you believe their islands are ‘sinking’ or just being inundated by ‘infrequent’ storms is beside the point. They are in trouble and deserve a humanitarian response.”

    What make you think that these people are in any trouble other the inadequate supplies of potable water, pollution etc., that I have already mentioned. This is entirely of their own making and the solution is within their capability.

    The problem is that it is the groups such as Greenpeace who are giving people the likes of you a guilt trip. Meanwhile as Elizabeth has made clear when she says ‘We say we want a commonsense core service council – that will not happen while people accept the greenwash and all the associated bug-eyed crap that goes with it.’

    You can so easily be waylaid by this unsubstantiated crap.

  14. Peter, “more frequent and freakish, climatic events” are normal. There have always been periods of cold and periods of warm, periods of climatic calmness and periods of zigzag hot cold wet dry etc. All we see is weather, even the records of NZ’s climate is little more than weather. Change is what the planet does, its fossils and core samples tell us so and they tell us – if we can bear to listen – that it’s not going to change its ways just because humans have got so smart, or so wicked. By all means treat it respectfully, don’t waste, don’t make messes because that’s bad manners i.e. lack of consideration towards others who live on it. But don’t imagine you’re going to halt its swings and roundabouts.

  15. Peter

    There’s a few things here to comment on!

    1. Elizabeth. I don’t have any firm view on the Transport Strategy because I haven’t read it yet. However, as I said earlier, I am more than happy for Lee, and others, who are more informed, to test assumptions and assertions to do with it. I agree $47m is a hell of a lot of money for cycleways in a hilly and coldish city and it needs to be justified and probably can’t be at this time because of our major debt problems. A classic nice to have, but can we afford it at this time? I would also be concerned if permanent closures of streets did indeed just end up putting people out of business. An unintended consequence of well intentioned ideas could result?
    However, I don’t object to the health, recreational and possible economic and social benefits that could flow. The proponents will need to come up with firm evidence/data to show this will happen, I agree.
    I don’t think it is necessary to just dismiss the whole thing out of hand as ‘greenwash’. Some aspects of the plan could well be considered, I wonder?

    2. Mick. I don’t subscribe to your view that the Pacific Islanders have created their own problems and we should just leave them be to ‘find their own solutions’ to water shortages etc. These are poor countries with few resources. Surely that is self evident. We are wealthy neighbours by comparison. Good neighbours help each other out.

    3. Hype. I am under no illusion that’ little, old me’ can change the climate! I agree I could do more to live less wastefully, as an individual, and make my own contribution to maintaining Planet Earth. I try, succeed at times and at other times make, for example, that ‘wasteful’ car journey because I want the freedom of mobility.
    I have seen droughts and floods all my life – especially coming from a country like Australia, I’m conscious of this – but, as I say, it is the frequency and intensity there, and elsewhere, that has people like me worried. I have to leave it to the experts to assess these things and from what I gather the scientific community is largely in accord as to the reality of climate change. You would expect there to be those in that community who disagree. Time will tell who are the prophets and who are the doomsayers. In the meantime, I go with those in the majority who know far more than me – and most of you here – about these matters.

    Back to bed. A bit of insomnia tonight!

  16. Peter, I don’t deny climate change – I accept it as normal. There are periods when it hardly changes at all – warmer or colder than now – and periods when it makes the swing back to one of its other :normal” periods :)

  17. Peter
    September 6, 2013 at 3:19 am

    You said:
    ” Mick. I don’t subscribe to your view that the Pacific Islanders have created their own problems and we should just leave them be to ‘find their own solutions’ to water shortages etc. These are poor countries with few resources. Surely that is self evident. We are wealthy neighbours by comparison. Good neighbours help each other out.”

    I see that you are determined to indulge yourself with guilt – so be it. But you conveniently ignored in my comment the fact that these islands are indeed governed in association with the US government. i.e. ultimately the responsibility of the United States – a very wealth country that could easily remedy its water supply problems and pollution.

    The sea rise issue is plainly a red herring more than likely promoted by Greenpeace, apparently stage managed for this Pacific Island Forum and whose real objectives you should be rather wary of.

    Good neighbours might help each other out and I’m sure they do but suckers are also born every day.

  18. Peter

    Fair amount of cynicism there, Mick.
    I have no objections to the USA helping out its dependencies.. like yourself. Kind of reflects what I was saying, doesn’t it, about helping poorer resourced countries. Better than invading and killing their people.

  19. Peter
    September 6, 2013 at 9:51 am

    No Pete, not cynicism, just realism – but what has invading and killing people got to do with this?

    Mick

  20. True Mick, it’s not EITHER prop them up forever OR kill them.
    Assistance tied to incentives to take responsibility for their own issues isn’t cruelty. Taking the spine out of people by rewarding them for limpness is no kindness. Living on extremely low-lying lands was never a long-term go-er, Holland worked that out a long time ago and found a solution but even their problem hasn’t ended, they can’t sit back and relax with cheese sandwiches in perpetuity. Islands have even fewer options. Either raise the island or work on getting the population educated and skilled enough to be welcome migrants into other countries, could be a plan.

    • I’m currently watching someone on a CPAP machine (forced breathing) in Cardiology, it soon puts things in perspective re living in Dunedin. Like I said before, as said by others too, we need the council to reduce debt as soon as possible and we require core services to be maintained and upgraded, the cost of which is gargantuan.

    • JimmyJones

      Elizabeth: Yes, we definitely should not forget the expanding consolidated debt and the continuing neglect of our water infrastructure at the expense of “making the stadium work”. Dave Cull seems not much better than Peter Chin when it comes to undisciplined spending on pet projects (his bicycle obsession for instance). It would seem like Dave Cull doesn’t want to think about the DCC’s credit rating (on “negative watch”) and doesn’t seem to understand that his tinkering with DCHL has not made any difference to the serious financial position that it faces.
      Good luck in Cardiology.

  21. Wouldn’t it be lovely if we got a council whose Vision was doing the core business very VERY efficiently, whose pet project was weeding out sounds-nice fluffing-around roles, positions, departments and committees?

    • JimmyJones

      Hype O’Thermia: I agree, that would be what we want. With the DCC we would also have to bring in transparency and honesty. And also some big changes with the staff and CEO so that they start working for the people and not themselves.

  22. JimmyJones

    Peter: the solution to the problem of people living on a sinking island is not for the DCC to try to reduce the global sea level by sabotaging Dunedin’s transport system in the hope that we will use less petrol/diesel. There are a few things wrong with this response: banning cars from George St etc doesn’t stop their island sinking. Even if the Global Warming Theory was true, and even if all NZ cities did the same as what the DCC intends, the effect on global temperature and sea level would not be measurable. Even on a global scale, big emission reductions are not going to help the Marshall Islands. I believe that John Key gave them some money, so I think they should be happy.

    I agree that the DCC Warmists shouldn’t be called Nazis just because I disagree with their viewpoint. The ones that I think deserve the title are those that are undemocratic in the way that they force us to make sacrifices to support their beliefs – we have seen this behaviour with the 2008 DCC Parking Botch-up. I don’t mind what they believe as long as they don’t inflict it on me and don’t try to wreck my city.

  23. Elizabeth
    September 6, 2013 at 11:41 am

    Amen to that comment. But sadly it is the very core services that have been and will continue to be cut. It seems to me that those who once managed and understood the essential value of those core services are long departed. They appear have been replaced by people who are not focussed upon these basic essentials but have been captured by dreamers who seek exciting, glamorous and frankly, often useless projects. The fact is that the core business of council is the mundane. Boring things such pipes, drains, roads and parks. Nothing more.

    The council has instead gambled with money on unnecessary or inappropriate projects that are not productive. Harbour Cone is one that comes to mind. That is the province of the private sector – not the public sector. It is not their money to spend.

    Mick

  24. Just read Pete George’s piece in “The Star”. Amazing! As I recently opined that all candidates ought to be compelled to read the last ten years of Annual Plans and at least five of the DCHL’s reports, it is patently obvious that Pete hasn’t. He states that he considers that “the ‘current council’ has done a good job on fixing the city’s debt levels.” What?!!! Does he not know that when this lot first came to council the DCC’s net debt stood at $93.963 million. At the end of the Chin dynasty it stood at $266.532m. Now at the end of Dave Cull’s first trimester it stands at $387.744m (inc stadium).
    Further, the consolidated debt of the city (including DCHL’s in-house debt) amounts to some $650 million!!
    Pete, good luck for council where you would be in for a rude shake up, but definitely a BIG thumbs down for the mayoralty.

  25. Pete is coming across as a Neil Collins wannabe.

  26. Peter

    Mick. You were talking about the merits of the USA aiding their dependencies. I agreed with you. It’s just better than what the Americans often do when their own self interest is at stake and/or want to be the World’s Policeman. That was all i was saying.
    As for debt, when your back is up against the wall, you cut costs/services, sell off assets and cut spending. Same for the city. I think the city will end up having no choice. It’s called facing the consequences. We have allowed this to happen. There will no doubt be howls of protest from even those who have long been warning about our debt levels for years now.
    I am also confident, under the present administration, that all this will happen while that bloody stadium continues to be propped up financially to ‘make it work’. That’s what will make me angrier.

  27. Peter
    September 6, 2013 at 3:23 pm

    Well you are right about having to face up to the consequences of debt. But the cost of core business of councils will still have to be met by the ratepayers. We simply have to have sewers, water and roads for the city to function.

    Other cities have run into problems of massive debt for ’white elephant’ vanity sports stadia. One in Canada was ‘on sold’ for a fraction of its original cost to the taxpayer. In that way they wrote off the running costs. The debt for the capital investment i.e. its loss, was written down –so the taxpayer paid! This most likely will happen here. Nobody in this town will make anything from the stadium. And, sooner or later the debt for it has to be paid.

    Mick

  28. Mick, you mention the stadium in Canada. This was the one that Paul claimed was profitable. It started at $918 million finished st $25m at which it probably is profitable. But the difference there is that our stadium is funded by the ratepayer whereas the Canadian was largely funded by the Ontario State Government, and it took the big hit. Then a private organisation went bankrupt before arriving at the final figure. Can you see John Key coming to bail out the DCC? Alternatively, can you see the DCC going bankrupt? One thing is for sure, Dave Cull and his environmental sustainability ‘muppets’ have no idea.

  29. Calvin Oaten
    September 6, 2013 at 5:08 pm

    Yup – that’s the one in Ontario. And no – can’t see John Key or anyone else for that matter bailing us out. Bankruptcy is certainly on the cards – watch for asset sales as Peter has hinted at earlier. But we sure as hell need those cycleways because they are soooo sustainable.

    Mick

  30. Voter

    Calvin, your mate Lee wants to cash in the Waipori Fund to reduce Council debt. Where did the council debt come from? Mainly the stadium. Your mate Lee is wanting to do what the other crowd wanted to do all along but weren’t game to touch it. Along comes Lee and wants the rugby vote by cashing in the Waipori Fund to reduce council debt (stadium) Hands off the Waipori Fund, Lee. You have just lost yourself a lot of votes.

    http://www.odt.co.nz/news/dunedin/271781/waipori-fund-improves-763m

  31. “Along comes Lee and wants the rugby vote by cashing in the Waipori Fund to reduce council debt (stadium)”??? Is there some kind of logic in that? Lee Vandervis did everything in his power to prevent the insane spending that resulted from building the stadium, he made no friends among rugby fanatics.
    Now we have that huge debt thanks to the stadium, the Chinese garden etc etc, pushed ahead by spendthrifts on council who couldn’t keep their eye on how the debt was piling up. The interest on that debt is by itself a frightening $ number. It has to be paid, and at the same time even if there are no more silly extravagances, this time from the planet-saviours, core business keeps on needing to be done.
    I’m not at all happy about selling assets, they provide the city’s income along with rates. But if we can pay off a lump sum it means less interest to pay, year after year, and IF (again) councillors don’t go “Wow, spare money!” and blow the savings on their pet schemes for saving the planet, we might find rates rising at only a small fraction more than the average Dunedin person’s income.

  32. Voter; so what would you do to relieve the situation? Put your head in the sand like Cull and co? The stadium is not the only item causing the problem. It is around $146 million. Think Otago Settlers Museum $37-40 million. Try Town Hall Conference Centren $50-odd million. Tahuna Sewage Treatment (essential) and pipe extension outfall $110 million. Now talking a $47 million Transport Strategy. Then of course the loss of $6 million on sale of Carisbrook (if you factor in the $2 million unpaid debt of the ORFU to the DCC). Also the loss (write down) of some $8.5 million by Delta on its land purchases in Central Otago. You see as shareholders in DCHL plus ratepayers to the DCC we are in the gun for $650-odd million in debt. That equates to around $14,500 per ratepayer. So in light of all this who will you vote for if not Lee? The Waipori Fund is only one of Lee’s suggestions. Think of the $100 million or thereabouts which could be released by a programmed sell-down of all non strategic properties. The DCC is in no position to be a property investor when it is facing bankruptcy. Think of shutting down the DCHL group of companies, although Grady Cameron is doing a good job of shutting Delta simply by rubbish management.
    Think about it before you condemn Lee.

    {The $47m for cycleways is not the total cost of the Transport Strategy, which will far exceed that sum. -Eds}

  33. Except, Calvin, I didn’t say that, a reporter simplified and summarised in their own words, and the meaning of what I think I said was quite different. That’s what happens.

    I think council have started to turn things around but there’s a way to go. If expenses are controlled while heading towards and getting to inflation level rates increases then things will gradually improve as inflation grows and fixed interest loans become easier to service. There are no quick fixes without risking significant risk of adverse effects. If you break fixed loans you pay penalties that can be worse than a longer repayment period.

    Last night Lee was talking about the council investing in the Arts which he thinks will generate export earnings. No details. He was talking to an arts crowd.

    No-one can go in and change things on their own, unless they control GD and are successful in increasing their vote.

    I think Hilary will be good value on the hardnosed side but she will need others, and especially support in the middle, where you have to work to bring a majority together. That’s where I can be effective. If the council becomes polarised or tries to do too much too quickly it’s more difficult. That’s the reality of politics.

    • Pete says: “I think council have started to turn things around but there’s a way to go.”

      Hard to know what to say to that.
      Except, do read the last 10 DCC Annual Plans and the DCHL annual reports – and then come back to us.

      Pete, no brownie points for trying.

      Um, “There are no quick fixes without risking significant risk of adverse effects.”
      There’s a sentence – starting to sound as incoherent as Minty-jinty and Calamity-kate.

      Hilary has one l.

  34. Voter

    It appears now that Calvin & Hype think that it is ok to use the Waipori Fund to subsidise the stadium debt because their mate Lee thinks it is a good idea. Calvin & Hype if Mr Farry or Mr Brown had suggested using the Waipori Fund to be used on funding the stadium. What would have been your reaction to that ?

  35. Voter, sit down quietly and do some t-h-i-n-k-i-n-g.
    Getting into debt for such a bunch of unnecessary unaffordable spend-ups was stupid.
    The debt, and ways of dealing with it, are either sensible or stupid.
    If something is sensible it doesn’t matter who says it.
    If something is stupid it doesn’t matter who says it.
    Get a grip.

  36. Gilbert

    The stadium debt should be paid for by those that it was built for. Leave the Waipori Fund alone.

  37. voter

    Hype & Calvin. Should not the cost of these spend ups fall into the lap of those who are to benefit ? We all benefit from the Waipori Fund if it is to be spent on infrastructure within the city, so why should one group, the ORFU, benefit from the Waipori Fund Just because your mate Lee wants to reduce debt ?

    • OF COURSE those who benefit from the stadium, should pay. Should have paid from the get-go. Unfortunately nobody made them. And there was no way they were going to dig into their own pockets as long as Councillors were prepared to vote for it to go ahead regardless. So the debt is the DCC’s debt, in other words, we the ratepayers have to stump up for it. Thanks to stupidity/greed/exploitation we who get sod-all benefit from the stadium, we who as you say, Voter, all benefit from the Waipori Fund, have to somehow find the money to pay for past recklessness.
      It’s a waste of time saying who “should” pay for the stadium, unless you have some way of squeezing blood out of stones, because they certainly haven’t shown any willingness AT ALL to pay for their own pleasure.

  38. Voter; suggest you contact Lee and get the full story. The Waipori Fund was simply one of many options, neither more nor less than others. It is all up for discussion.
    Gilbert; If the stadium was paid for by those it was built for there would be no problem. Take your suggestions to Malcolm Farry, Eion Edgar, the ORFU, and see what reception you get. Just don’t put the blame on Lee. He is only trying to get the other bums in denial around the council table to address the matter of the ‘humungous’ Debt.

  39. Voter

    Why should the dreams of idiots be financed by the Waipori Fund ?
    Let those who created this debt be accountable. It doesn’t need Lee to give them an escape route.

    • They aren’t accountable in law. When the bailiffs come they won’t come to “those who created this debt”. They’ll come to us, the ratepayers, because the money was not lent to those individuals, it was lent to the city, and what security does the city have, to raise money against? Us, our homes. That’s how it is. All “X or Y or Z should pay” is just wishful thinking, not grounded in the reality of how money is borrowed and lent.

  40. Voter; you are simply confirming your complete lack of understanding when you keep on insisting that Lee wants to sell the Waipori Fund to pay for the stadium. I repeat, he simply put it forward along with all other avenues as a means of getting discussions going about the debt, which I repeat is not just the stadium. That the other options were not mentioned by the media shows how it also confuses the issue. You say, “let those who created this debt be accountable.” How exactly does that make the debt go away? Just think it through.

  41. John P.Evans, council nominee

    Sale of the Waipori Fund is not the right answer. The major problem is the totality of debt and therefore the annual interest payments. While fixed interest repayments will not rise when inflation hits, the period of time in which they remain fixed is unlikely to exceed the time it takes for inflation to kick in. We thus need to quickly reduce the cost of running the council and sell dubious assets like cutting rights to forests, unlet buildings, Delta if possible, and handball the stadium to the University at whatever the cost. The annual cost of running the council is somewhere in excess of $55 million in wages, salaries and consultants fees. Paul Orders is slowly reducing the numbers of overpaid staff, but the annual budgets of most departments except maintenance and repair of roads, waste and sewage treatment needs to be cut. Managers of managers instructed to not replace the middle management, while ensuring that staff like arborists, librarians and other necessary staff are kept. It is obvious with 550,000 hits on TradeMe and 400 credit cards that a reduction in fat will not diminish services and in fact will probably improve some. After all, how many TradeMe watcher managers does it require to manage the other TradeMe watchers?

    The recent spate of good news stories emanating from the council includes the number of fine appeals granted.
    (In a straw poll please advise if any DCC ratepayer you know has ever had a parking fine rescinded on appeal!) And the number of increased dog registrations meaning supposedly that the five (5) dog vehicles are working harder? One would assume that if dog registrations were UP, the need for dog trucks would be DOWN! As I understand it the number of stray dogs actually caught annually does not justify 5 trucks, 5 drivers etc.

    Our biggest problem is stray cats, I would support a cat truck!

    And finally Traffic Lights, we have traffic lights on every corner in Dunedin and half way up some streets, the time for the removal of traffic lights has arrived – Hallelujah

    • John, you’re right, dreamer/TradeMe staff and managers of managers do need grated out.

    • John P.Evans, council nominee
      September 6, 2013 at 9:44 pm

      John ends with… “And finally Traffic Lights, we have traffic lights on every corner in Dunedin and half way up some streets, the time for the removal of traffic lights has arrived – Hallelujah”

      Amen to that John… But the underlying significance is the unnecessary ‘make work’ mindset that is always ‘justified’ by safety, regulation, and statistical mumbo jumbo that bamboozles ordinary folk. One can conjure up a poor man’s version of Sir Humphrey warning the politicians of the ‘dire consequences’ of ignoring their sage advice.

      Mick

      • Chris

        Thank goodness someone else is pointing out the obvious re the traffic lights! Having lived here for 22 years I don’t see much more traffic, just much reduced flow. Who has the cousin in the traffic light factory? Whilst some European towns are ditching lights completely (means all drivers have to be careful all the time and are awake to all possibilities instead of racing to catch the lights) we are going steadily into the mire. I travel the world and find it sad that what used to be a pleasure (driving here) is now a total pain in the ass. As a Doctor I have to drive into town late at night at times and sit at red lights that do not change when the road is deserted. What should take 5 minutes takes 20. I love cycling but certainly would not wish to do it in the centre city area…enough cyclists have already died. Sadly many motorists seem to think it’s better to get in the car when feeling sleepy than going to bed. I would thoroughly support the removal of traffic lights entirely.

        • Amen Chris – and you are right re the European situation. I read recently of a town in Germany where they have eliminated traffic lights altogether with improved traffic flow! But don’t expect that here – it might reduce costs. That would never do.
          Mick

        • ### ch9.co.nz September 19, 2013 – 7:05pm
          No decision to be made until the public has been fully consulted
          The DCC says no decisions will be made on a plan that could see the loss of hundreds of car parks in the city until the public has been fully consulted.
          Video

        • John P.Evans, council nominee

          Chris, you have a business, others have an activity which does not require them to be in an office all day. Ease of transport is a critical part of their business and the dumbing down of traffic may cost lives in your case or business activity in others. Dave Cull is a property developer and Jinty spends her time in the DCC offices, both parking in the DCC, neither needs freedom of access or travel through the city. Therefore you get their drothers, rather than that of the actively involved business person or customer.

        • Despite their convenient council car parks… Daaave and Minty both cycle to work then home again, on regular occasion. We know what we think of Cr Cyclists tinged green.

        • John P.Evans, council nominee

          I lived in Sydney, (4 million plus people) whilst on a restraint of trade, there were two occasions at 4.30 pm and 5.30pm when power was lost and there were no traffic lights, there was zero (0) accidents during these periods in the whole of Sydney!!!

          In another case of bureacratic crap, the one speed camera above the Spit bridge generated $A22,000,000 last year, the police were asked whether there had been any reduction in accidents and they stated that here had been no measurable change, but they could not afford to dismantle the camera as the government was in deficit!! In fact there had been an INCREASE in accidents
          http://www.walk.com.au/pedestriancouncil/page.asp?pageid=342

  42. Voter

    It would appear Calvin that you support the use of the Waipori fund to be used to wipe the debt of past dreamers. That would mean the next lot of dreamers that are about to come on board will have a clean slate, and god knows how much debt they will crank up, but unfortunately under lees plan there will not be any Waipori fund or cash flow from it around to cover up the new dreamers debt . It would be better to have hands off the Waipori fund and all past and future dreamers learn to live within the council income without fantasising with the future generations cash flow from the Waipori fund.

  43. Again Voter, you are preempting the outcome of any discussion which may have come about over Lee’s suggestions.To then draw from this the assumption that I am in favour of using the Waipori Fund to ‘wipe out debt of past dreamers’, is frankly ‘crap.’ You obviously have made up your mind, based on only a hazy understanding of the long and detailed story of the DCC’s debt.

  44. Before Jinty and Dave get too carried away with their Transport Strategy they should read ODT’s Drivesouth editor David Thomson’s take on the future of the motor car, particularly in Dunedin. It might cause a change of thought, although probably not, as I suspect Jinty, at least is vehemently opposed to anything which might get in the way of her cycling dreams. It’s in the ODT 7/10/13.

  45. Peter

    I seem to remember, from the mists of time, some documentary on the evolution of the electric car and how the oil industry has thwarted its development because it didn’t suit their agenda of profiteering from the exploitation of fossils fuels. Anyone who has heard of it and knows its name?
    Calvin. I couldn’t imagine anyone, like Jinty, being opposed to this development as a complementary addition to cycling when the electric motor car is needed for some situations requiring instant mobility.

    • Then why are Minty-jinty and her bug-eyed crew pushing the ultra expensive draft transport strategy (DaftTS).

    • Peter
      September 8, 2013 at 7:04 pm

      Peter. You might be referring to this.

      ‘Who Killed the Electric Car? is a 2006 documentary film that explores the creation, limited commercialization, and subsequent destruction of the battery electric vehicle in the United States, specifically the General Motors EV1 of the mid-1990s. The film explores the roles of automobile manufacturers, the oil industry, the US government, the California government, batteries, hydrogen vehicles, and consumers in limiting the development and adoption of this technology.’ Source Wikipedia
      Mick

    • Ring-ring… ring-ring… “Betty, mate, I’m crook-as and my diarrhoea is worse than yesterday, please can you come over here and give me a double to the doctor on your bike?”

  46. Peter

    Thanks, Mick. Yes, that’s the one.

  47. Not sure that the oil companies still have the power in that way. Think Tesla.
    But latest developments look like leaning more to the hydrogen chemical system generating electricity on board which powers the vehicle. Self contained in essence, as long as hydrogen dispensing stations are set up. The only by product is water. Some vehicle developers (Honda for one) are well along the track. Once it happens they will all be on board in a flash. That in essence is Thomson’s message. My understanding of the DCC’s Transport Strategy being pushed by Dave Cull and Jinty MacTavish seem aimed at pushing the car (of whatever propulsion) out of the inner city, emphasising walking, cycling and public transport. A quicker way to destroy city retail I can’t think of.

    • Calvin, this is where the Chamber of Commerce, retailers, small businesses, commercial property investors, freight carriers, public transport operators and the Dunedin public need to be very staunch in resisting Liability Cull and the DTS Deceivers. Paul Orders surely isn’t listening to Ms Rosebud, T Avery and the Transportation Planning staff; I thought he was more sensible than this ?!

      Dunedin City should not become the Lesser Dunedin / eco-worrier experiment.

      • ### ch9.co.nz September 10, 2013 – 6:48pm
        Draft Transport Strategy not far away
        A decision on the city’s Draft Transport Strategy shouldn’t be far away with deliberations resuming this week. Councillors will meet on Friday morning to further discuss the roading and transport plans for the city over the next 30 years. Submissions on the plan called for everything from electric vehicles to commuter trains. The last meeting was held over a week ago, with several arguments and plenty of doubts being raised.
        Ch39 Link [No video available]

      • It’s not just running the car (batteries recharged with organic bio-grow certified electricity) it’s building them out of materials extracted, manufactured, extruded using factories and plant home-knitted out of sustainably-grown hemp fibre. Much better to hand-knit your own bicycle out of recycled wire netting, and crochet the tyres using strips of worn-out reusable shopping bags.

  48. JimmyJones

    Submissions for the Second Generation District Plan close at 5 pm today (Friday). It seems to have been written by the same dimwits that wrote the Transport Strategy: the first four objectives are –
    – Climate Change
    – Fuel price volatility
    – Biodiversity
    – Environmental performance
    Not many councillors will be familiar with the documents, except for the ones on Jinty’s seclusive Sustainability subcommittee (Dave Cull, Jinty MacTavish, Kate Wilson, Bill Acklin).

    There is a lot to read – try the introduction (http://www.dunedin.govt.nz/whats-on/2gp). Dunedin is already a small city, but now the planners and schemers want it to be “compact”. We have seen that they don’t like us using energy, and they are aiming for a car-less city. The poison is spreading, so write something.

    • Notice the INDECENT haste with which Minty and Co have pushed this draft second generation district plan through the consultation processes before the elections.

      THIS IS NOT GOOD GOVERNANCE.
      Exclamation. This is deliberate.
      Most of it is bulldust and worse.
      Save the planet, fellow earthlings. Let’s destroy the city’s residential historic heritage that so many are looking after nicely, proudly and with mostly sensitive upgrades (embodied energy, what it’s that?)….

      For now is the turn of the council’s friends the developers and fully insensitive intensive subdivision. Oh yay.

      Add the effects of the forthcoming RMA amendments to the plan and the city is ripped to s***, such that affordable housing is less and less likely for All. Speculation. Redistributed wealth. Again!

      • JimmyJones

        Our future DCC councillors should quickly learn to avoid the mistakes that our current lot repeat over and over. One important lesson is – never, ever leave the planners and schemers to work unsupervised. Because of the grossly excessive staff numbers this is especially important so as to avoid unpractical, ideological, costly solutions to problems that don’t exist. New “problems” will continuously be presented to councillors as justification for the creative impulses of the staff to be unleashed on our great city. An example would be the two unfortunate cyclist fatalities. There was no connected cause of these deaths, but they were a dream-come-true for the transport planners and the politicians who needed this publicity to promote and gain funding for their “Bicycle City” concept which is an important part of the Transport Strategy.

        The planners and schemers should have never been allowed to re-write from scratch the Transport Strategy, the Parking Strategy and the new District Plan (2GP). Any individual changes that are thought necessary should be approved by councillors and closely monitored to avoid the type of overly creative solutions that we now have. Currently, there is no meaningful reporting of City Development/Transport Planning activities to those councilors who are not members of Jinty’s Sustainability Panel.

        It turns out that Bill Acklin resigned from Jinty’s panel in April 2013 (see FSD 24/4/13), he was replaced by Teresa Stevenson. The membership is therefore: Dave Cull, Jinty MacTavish, Kate Wilson, Teresa Stevenson, two previously mentioned senior managers and up to six local activists. These people should not be allowed to make important decisions about our city, especially the unelected ones. Jinty’s panel is undemocratic and should not be reconvened when it expires soon.

        • Hear hear, JimmyJones !!

        • JimmyJones

          Thanks, Elizabeth.
          I meant to say: “Currently there is no meaningful reporting of City Development/Transport Planning activities TO those councillors who are not members of Jinty’s Sustainability Panel.”
          The Planning And Environment Committee (PEC) is meant to oversee the planning activities. Dr Rosebud’s department used to provide to the PEC a report summarizing their work program. These stopped in 2010 for no known reason. The planners and schemers still have to ask permission for some things, but the councillors are not sufficiently informed to know what is going on: not unless you are in Jinty’s club, that is.

          {Your previous comment has been corrected. -Eds}

        • There are frequent times when I think JimmyJones would be good to have on council to balance against the rising forces of insanity. But would I wish him this torture when he’s a good outside critic with his own life to pursue? Hmmm.

        • The other thing that comes to mind, is the fact that youth, minty freshness and naivety championed by (Liability Cull) and Greater Debt Dunedin – is now being seen for what and who it is.

          The eco-worrier can modify her ruthless idealism to garner respect —not for herself but for every citizen she and her knitted beanie-wearing activist cohorts (devoid of commonsense) are selfishly set to disenfranchise, impair and neglect – via flawed social experiments tuned and alarmed by largely untested and inexperienced staff of the City Development Team and Transportation Planning.

          The council needs much stronger leadership from chief executive Paul Orders, to crimp excess and guard citizens from the incompetent and corrupt.

          Now’s not the time for Mr Orders to try and look cool… standing by or promoting the psychodramatic reports and recommendations of Dr Rosebud, woman without a stethoscope.

        • People like JimmyJones are good to have outside council – but one of my primary aims is to set up a system of consultation that gives more weight to informed opinion outside council. Better information out (as much as possible full transparency), a system of scrutiny and debate, measured opinion rather than deliberately slanted by activists (Greens are adept at this), and that will inform council in a way that is harder to ignore.

          This will also help address the pockets inside council that quietly get away with too much influence.

          We could change the way we do democracy with this, but it needs people with the will inside (and not outvoted), and on the outside.

          I have a good idea how to structure this but want as much input and as many ideas on it as possible. Ambitious but I think do-able and could change the face of our local democracy, breaking the old systems.

        • The Council leadership group for built environment that I was in (by DCC invitation, uh-oh, mistaken as a yes-woman…) was fed both its hand-picked membership and an “agenda”. Given human nature parading as virtuosity in an extremely small town where everyone is related and the gene pool is frighteningly tiny, one day I pronounced the thing as unethical and got some heavy treatment in the meeting, being the only one that was not a conformist and not quite the only one not to (indirectly?) benefit my personal real estate or business interests. After that a former female colleague in ‘design’ never spoke to me again! How shallow was she, a former council employee. “Ah-ha!”, I said to myself.
          The leadership group, like others, was started in Harland’s era and flew into Cull’s hands upon his taking up the mayoralty. The result: the warehouse area and plans for the two-way road system to replace the one-way south of Queens Gardens.
          I doubt there is any means to arrive at fair and representative consultation in a plot-ridden city/rural constituency such as this. Generations, decades, of power and corruption perpetuated by highly suspect elected councils and mayors that would fry your kidneys.

        • Bad science…
          If the public see these charts within their (sniff) wiki-context or their scientific context… and they see Greater Debt Dunedin angling council policy and strategy for the social and built environment – what conclusions?!?!? If any.

          The Geologic temperature record are changes in Earth’s environment as determined from geologic evidence on multi-million to billion (10 to the 9) year time scales. The study of past temperatures provides an important paleoenvironmental insight because it is a crucial component of the climate and oceanography of the time.

          Ice_Age_Temperature
          File: Holocene Temperature Variations Rev.png [Source: globalwarmingart.com]

          Geologic evidence of past temperature changes
          On longer time scales, sediment cores show that the cycles of glacials and interglacials are part of a deepening phase within a prolonged ice age that began with the glaciation of Antarctica approximately 40 million years ago. This deepening phase, and the accompanying cycles, largely began approximately 3 million years ago with the growth of continental ice sheets in the Northern Hemisphere. Gradual changes in Earth’s climate of this kind have been frequent during the Earth’s 4500 million year existence and most often are attributed to changes in the configuration of continents and ocean sea ways.

          Geological time temperature
          Lisiecki, L E; Raymo, M E (January 2005). “A Pliocene-Pleistocene stack of 57 globally distributed benthic δ18O records” (PDF). Paleoceanography 20: PA1003.

          via Wikipedia – Geologic temperature record and Temperature record

          “Global Warming – I like to look at data rather than having conclusions drawn for me.” –Lee Vandervis

        • That’s why we need someone in there independent of all that, with no ties to any factions, but who is prepared to stand up to anything and deal with it.

  49. JimmyJones; You’re right about the “2GDP” It is more ‘rules rules rules!’ In a word a make work exercise in futility. The city is struggling under debt, regulation and near negative population growth status, yet they want to impose ever more restrictions in order to preempt problems which aren’t there and furthermore aren’t likely to be. All it will achieve (apart from adding costs) will be to accelerate the decline of initiative and innovation. In a word, stifle us with “nanny state” rules and legislation covering what we can do, where we can drive our cars, what fuels we should use and on top of all that impose controls to obviate “climate change” which is a totally unproven happening, but will impose costs nonetheless. We are in trouble.

    • Hype O'Thermia

      Calvin, ““climate change” which is a totally unproven happening” – no! The important point to come to terms with is that it does change, always did, always will. Sometimes it changed fast and sometimes slowly. There is a major “wave-shaped” line overlaid with many other “waves” and “zig-zags” and a tiny fraction of the tiny zig-zags can be reasonably attributed to human actions – but because the lines are overlaid the cumulative effect can be sometimes to briefly increase change and sometimes to cancel out the changes for as given small period.
      And then there’s weather. It’s cold today.
      This is because half a dozen people rode their bicycles last week when the weather was pleasant instead of using cars – yeah!
      Change is real, change is normal. Busting the budget, out of the delusional belief that they can change this fact, is irresponsible.

  50. As the above charts show, Earth has a way of doing things, as an extension of the Sun’s instructions. But hey! humans know a thing or two about how to halt all that nonsense and make it behave. That’s why we have people like Jinty and Dave to put it to rights. Pity about the economics.

    • Dunedin. After he was elected as mayor, Daaave and I ran into each other on the street outside the Civic Centre [built environment]. He said he was very uncertain about whether he was up to the job. That was a fairly human reaction [social environment]. But where is he now. Lost the sparkle.

      • “Lost the sparkle.”

        That’s definitely how he looks, every forum. Half hearted at best. I’ve been quite surprised how lacklustre he has been, he’s a capable speaker but without conviction, or sitting on the fence trying to appease opposite sides, he looks decidedly wobbly.

        • Pete, he’s been doing better at city rest homes. “A lovely man.” Said the witnesses.

        • Reading page 9 of The Star (12.9.13), ‘Cull has unfinished business’, by Tim Miller. This is his motivation for standing again. A well worn phrase that.

          “Mr Cull said there were always small decisions where things could have been done differently but nothing during the past three years stood out as being fundamentally wrong.”

          Oh dear. Forgetfulness or something more serious.

  51. Hype O'Thermia

    Only enough extra money towards the stadium to make it work. By golly he’s had to chuck a lot at it and it’s still not paying its way i.e. not adding extra costs above interest, so I suppose Daaave’s unfinished business is spending just enough more to “make it work”.
    On that basis I’ll be voting for him. Oh bugger my nose is hitting the screen and if I belkjnd mby neghcik doffwnm ity hiptuts th’e] kiemmyns

  52. I think Mr Cull suffers from that common syndrome of knowing the answers even though he doesn’t even know the questions. That he doesn’t know the financial problems of the city is clearly demonstrated in his interview with the ‘Star]. How he can on one hand claim to have, in three years, solved the debt problem when in those same years he presides over the creation of an additional $288m of that debt? That you cannot commit funds to bail out the ORFU, DVML, Events promotion funds, concede defamation suits over the same issues and then complete non essential projects such as the Town Hall / Conference Centre, the Otago Settlers Museum and commit to a Transport Strategy Plan and Energy Projects without first ascertaining the costs of same, and accept the costs of rectifying of the St Clair Sea Wall, instead of pursuing the consultants who created the problem in the first place. All that seems to corroborate the fact that he simply has no idea at all about running a prudent council. Time he went, for his own health’s sake. It will destroy him.

    • Cr Vandervis managed to extract some changes from the subcommittee as the draft strategy goes to the full council next Monday. The ideological mix on the full council is different, and it is possible further change could be made. Whether the majority of the subcommittee likes it or not, cars will remain the overwhelming form of transport around Dunedin, and the strategy needs to reflect that fact. –ODT

      ### ODT Online Wed, 18 Sep 2013
      Editorial: Cars, trucks and bikes in Dunedin
      Draft strategies at the most relevant of times can be dull fare, and the Dunedin City Council draft transport strategy would not normally cause heightened debate. Documents and processes can be hard going because they deal in concepts and in the future. People usually relate so much better to the concrete and the here and now. Nevertheless, strategies guide policy and spending and are, therefore, important.
      The city’s draft transport strategy seeks to identify and address key transport challenges facing the city over the next 30 years, beginning with improving the city’s poor safety record. Initiatives proposed include a multimillion-dollar central-city upgrade, improved cycleways and bus services and a new eastern freight bypass.
      The Otago Chamber of Commerce, however, has said the strategy ignores the inadequate arterial route through the city, a lack of commuter parking and the significance of the road link to Port Chalmers. It claims the document contains a thinly veiled agenda of sustainability.
      The council’s hearings subcommittee reconvened on the matter last week, and Cr Lee Vandervis weighed in, pushing for changes. He alleged the strategy had been hijacked by an anti-car agenda and was an assault on motorists. He repeated an earlier call for the strategy to be abandoned, saying the draft was based on false assumptions, lacked evidence and ignored reality.
      Clearly, there is a major division, one which is emerging as a serious election issue in the council elections. One comment at the Otago Daily Times mayoral forum even went as far as to wonder if cycleways in the city outnumbered cyclists.
      The chamber, for its part, is conscious everything possible must be done to make the city as efficient as possible for trucks and motorists and therefore business. That, it argues, is the reality for now and well into the future.
      Read more

      • John P.Evans, council nominee

        I am encouraged by the ODT coming out against the draft transport plan. This direction whilst at present apart from the chamber of commerce the first evidence of the silent majority’s opposition to the plan. Debate amongst Dunedin citizens will hopefully solidify against this unrealistic attack on our wallets and freedom for idealogical reasons. A transport plan of this nature may have real meaning in Auckland and Wellington where there are traffic jams, Dunedin however only has a traffic problem due to the proliferation of traffic lights. As an aside I always chuckle when radio New Zealand issues a “traffic report”, The only explanation is that they have found a patsy to sponsor the report and therefore have to have one despite our lack of traffic.

        • The ODT editorial has ruffled a few feathers today, but such is the faulty Eco-worrier agenda and thinking behind the draft transport strategy.

          The only thing I understand is freight haulage between nodes and supply chains. If we bugger up traffic flow – see trucking times reduced – through Dunedin for primary producers and processors, then say goodbye to Fonterra’s use of the Port of Otago! They can rail past us to the ports of Timaru and Bluff. Then see jobs REALLY disappear at Dunedin.

          Daaave has no idea what the chasing of Minty, council transportation planners, and assorted knitted beanie-wearing pals’ can do to destroy supply chains. Most ex carpentry TV presenters and tertiarycoughtypesatotago have NO UNDERSTANDING whatsoever about industry logistics, service infrastructure, and the productive economy.

          This isn’t just about pedalling and wet bums in the Dunedin weather, for commuters that don’t need to move groceries and children to school and ballet class. Or lil skateboarders out for a thrill.

          Plus, some of us definitely won’t end up in IT, working in the cosy warehouse precinct – with a house on the flat.

      • ## ODT Online Wed, 18 Sep 2013
        Editorial: Cars, trucks and bikes in Dunedin

        The Editorial comments …… “It seems, too, that no matter the efforts, public transport patronage remains modest. Dunedin population numbers and densities are just too low and private transport just too convenient and cheap.

        While increased bus use might be advantageous for various reasons, that does not mean it is going to happen.”

        And isn’t that the reality of it all. When I look around I always see convoys of empty busses and empty cycle lanes. Where are the cyclists and bus patrons?

        And when I look at this ‘strategy’ I see millions added to the debt that has to be sustained by a diminishing rating base. Who are these so called strategists?

        Mick

        • Draft Dunedin City Transport Strategy 2013
          http://www.dunedin.govt.nz/whats-on/transport-strategy-2013 [all related documents]

          Mick, I understand from a conversation had yesterday with a council staffer that (ex DCC chief executive) Jim Harland for NZTA is putting pressure on DCC to get the draft strategy signed off. Perhaps others can elucidate on this (funding) aspect.

          Starter list of strategists includes:

          (don’t worry about the order or level of importance, this one’s been coming on the boil for a long time, in fact, years… line in the sand, let’s start with the Your City Our Future (YCOF) forum started by Jim Harland in 2010, to which I and many others were invited/hand-picked… it’s still evolving with Liability Cull’s blessing)

          DCC panel for the strategy: Crs Kate Wilson (chair), Teresa Stevenson, Lee Vandervis, Jinty MacTavish and Andrew Noone.

          DCC Planning and Environment Committee, chaired by Cr Kate Wilson.

          Greater Dunedin

          DCC Transportation Planning:
          Sarah Connolly, DCC Transportation Planning Manager.
          She encouraged people to have their say on the draft strategy: [Calling all LIFESTYLERS !! DCC press release via Scoop 19.7.13] “It is important to remember the transport system exists to support the movement of people and goods so people can enjoy their way of life. That’s why we are asking people if we have got the priorities and ideas right. We want to know what people think so we can develop a final plan that will meet future challenges while maintaining Dunedin’s great lifestyle.” Then…
          [ODT 30.8.13] “Council transportation planning manager Sarah Connolly also defended the strategy, saying international consultants had helped shape it.”
          [ODT 29.8.13] there were 59 submitters on the strategy – 26 supported the strategy, 4 did not, and 29 did not state a position.

          Graeme Hamilton, Council transportation acting group manager.

          Sue Bidrose, DCC General Manager
          Tony Avery, DCC General Manager

          Anna Johnson, Manager, City Development Team

          Jim Harland, NZTA Regional Director Southern ?
          Simon Underwood, NZTA Projects Team Manager ?

          Cycling Lobby – eg Spokes Dunedin (secretary Dr Robert Thompson; search more online).
          Generation Zero (Harriet Leadbetter, Heather Bosselmann and Tod Coxhead).
          Sustainable Dunedin ?
          Blueskin Resilient Communities Trust (Scott Willis).
          University of Otago Centre for Sustainability (director Janet Stephenson thinks it ”refreshing” to see the issue of climate change back on the agenda, “It’s incredibly important we take action on climate change.” ODT 15.8.13)
          Other networked UoO/OP staff, students, PhDs and Professors involved in things ‘greenish’.
          Waitati resident Hagen Bruggemann (trialling retrofitted electric-powered cars).
          Transition Towns – Waitati/Blueskin and NEV (check online).
          Green Party ?
          Dunedin South MP Clare Curran (Labour)

          etc etc

          Oh yeah!
          DCC [PDF, 1.339 MB] Climate Change – Impacts on Dunedin Report April 2010
          12 Apr 2010: This report outlines the expected current best estimates of climate change for Dunedin. This report has been received but is yet to be adopted by the Council.

        • THIS IS THE LATEST BOMBSHELL – HOT PRESS

          Dunedin City Council – Media Release
          Options to Improve Cycle Safety Released

          This item was published on 18 Sep 2013.

          The community will be consulted on two preferred long-term options for improving the safety of Dunedin’s one-way sections of State Highway 1.

          The NZ Transport Agency (Transport Agency) has been working with the Dunedin City Council (DCC) and cycle advocacy group Spokes to improve cycle safety on the one-way streets through the central city. This is in response to a rethink of how cycle safety should be managed within the city following cyclist fatalities in 2011 and 2012 on the one-way system.

          At its meeting on Monday, the Council will consider a report which includes information on the two preferred options. Under both options, the cycle lane would be shifted to the driver’s right hand side of the road and be physically separated from traffic.

          For one option, the separated cycle lane would continue to run along both of the one-way routes, to be used by cyclists travelling in the same direction as the traffic. For the other option, a wider separated cycle lane would run along Cumberland Street only (linked in the vicinity of the S bends by Emily Siedeberg Place) and be used by cyclists traveling in both directions.

          Transport Agency Projects Team Manager Simon Underwood says, “In developing these options, the working group recognised that for north-south travel through the inner city, there was little in the way of alternate off-road or non-arterial route options for cyclists.”

          As an example, the other continuous route of George Street and Princes Street is also busy and includes bus traffic.

          DCC Transportation Planning Manager Sarah Connolly says the Council is being asked to note that initial consultation will start shortly on the two options for the state highway.

          “Following Monday’s meeting, preliminary and informal conversations will be held first before a later formal consultation process. The consultation process will be carefully designed to ensure affected businesses are actively involved.”

          Both the DCC and the Transport Agency believe improving cycle safety for the one-way system is key to establishing a wider inner city network which provides for safer cycling.

          As part of the short-term changes to improve cycle safety, parking changes at seven sites, including outside the Dunedin Hospital, will go ahead. These relate mainly to small changes in the number and type of parks, such as P5s and pay and display parking spaces.

          Contact General Manager Infrastructure and Networks on 03 477 4000.

          DCC Link

        • ### ODT Online Thu, 19 Sep 2013
          Parking slashed in cycle-lane plan
          By Debbie Porteous
          Between 200 and 400 parks on the central Dunedin one-way system will be removed and replaced by dedicated cycle lanes if a new plan by the New Zealand Transport Agency goes ahead. The agency, in conjunction with Dunedin City Council staff and cycle advocacy group Spokes, has come up with two preferred long-term options for improving safety on Dunedin’s one-way system, both of which include cycleways separated from the road.
          The council is being asked to note that initial consultation would start shortly on the two options. Preliminary and informal conversations would then be held, with a formal consultation process to follow. The consultation process would be designed to ensure affected businesses were involved.
          Read more

        • ### ODT Online Sat, 19 Oct 2013
          Leuchs accuses Vandervis
          By Chris Morris
          Dunedin city councillor Lee Vandervis has been accused of misrepresenting former Olympian Kashi Leuchs’ views on cycleways to ”push forward his own agenda” at a recent Dunedin City Council meeting.
          However, Cr Vandervis hit back yesterday, denying the claim and saying any suggestion he did so deliberately was ”slanderous”.
          Read more

  53. Hype O'Thermia

    Tooth fairy economics. You go to bed and the money magically appears while you’re sleeping.
    Who’s going to be mean enough to tell Daaave it’s not like that when you’re grown up?

    • Could take a while for that message to hit the back of Daaave’s head, ratepayers and residents still have assets to steal against.

      • People – candidates and voters – need to know exactly why Cull’s council decided it had a mandate to travel way outside the annual plan process and beyond in the last three years, without transparency, without accountability, and without consulting ratepayers and residents on multi-million dollar ‘anomalies’.

        WHY.

  54. According to Larry Mitchell, an independent finance and policy analyst who specialises in local government, Dunedin’s overall debt has increased 1700 per cent to $586 million since 2000.

    Figures supplied by Mitchell show that in the 10 years to 2009, the city had increased its debt from $32m to $174m – a 436 per cent rise. In the two years since, Dunedin’s debt had ballooned a further 256 per cent, with latest audited figures showing that as of June 2011, the council had debt totalling $586m – or around $11,000 per ratepayer.

    Mayor Cull says that he council now had to keep a tight rein on its spending and seek out ways of reducing its costs.

    I wonder how Mayor Cull reconciles the implications of the Transportation Strategy costs with his ‘tight reign’ on spending and reducing costs.

    The hard facts are that this level of continued expenditure is profligate and not justifiable when one considers the straightened ratepayer base of this city.
    Mick

  55. Russell Garbutt

    I have, on more than one occasion, tried to interest current Councillors in having a presentation from Larry Mitchell. Those suggestions have, on every occasion fallen on deaf ears. The fact is that Larry Mitchell is a truly independent analyst of Local Body finance – the only one I know of in New Zealand. He is not the friends of those that want to borrow, or have borrowed to the point of financial ruin.

    It is not in the interests of any of the current Council – apart from a couple – to have any publicity about the current levels of debt – despite it being the single biggest thing that is holding Dunedin back. I am more than disappointed that to questions on the matter, I hear things like “projected” debt. I would really love to hear Larry Mitchell’s assessment of our Council’s financial performance and his suggested remedies – but I’m afraid we won’t. More is the pity. Perhaps it is something that a person that is standing could arrange to have happen outside the Council Chamber?

    • Fair points Russell – it’s not like Larry hasn’t offered his presentation, thoughts and advice to Dunedinites if not the City Council.

      Paul Orders surely could see this happen? Should talk to Paul or Sandy in the interests of transparency and accountability.

      Normally, I would suggest the Chamber or ODT as sponsors – but Larry’s likely to scare them and wreck their ‘brand’ for Dunedin/Otago. Um, ‘Stand Up Otago’ – before you keel over.

      (I think they really mean Stand Up Dunedin…)

  56. Peter

    Always a concern when decision makers only want to listen to those who tell them what they want to hear. Only ends up getting them – and us – further into trouble down the road.
    We saw it, of course, with the peer reviews on the stadium. Ignored. Now we are paying the price.

  57. Hype O'Thermia

    {Hype – thanks, this is relevant to the draft transport strategy. -Eds}

    Re:

    September 19, 2013 at 9:40 am
    Parking slashed in cycle-lane plan
    Between 200 and 400 parks on the central Dunedin one-way system will be removed and replaced by dedicated cycle lanes if a new plan by the New Zealand Transport Agency goes ahead.
    http://www.odt.co.nz/news/dunedin/273836/parking-slashed-cycle-lane-plan

    Central city parking is already a huge pain for those who work there and a huge disincentive for those who would, given a fair go, voluntarily do business there. Is this another of Jim Harland’s fubarring Dunedin schemes I ask myself, wondering if loathing and paranoia have distorted my perceptions. Then I take a chill pill and review recent history of Dunedin as a “forward looking” and “Business-friendly” city and rule out paranoia.
    Whether people are motivated by ambition, revenge, malice or ideology matters little when the results are indistinguishable. The ratepayer and the person trying to establish then grow a business – or keep it from being killed off – has more than enough worries without delving into the psychopathology of their tormentors.

    • Last meeting of the incumbent Council on 23 September 2013

      Agenda – Council – 23/09/2013 (PDF, 110.6 KB)

      See Item 22 TRANSPORT STRATEGY
      Following parts 22a) and 22b), note there is the RESOLUTION TO EXCLUDE THE PUBLIC.

      *Also note:
      Item 25 Property Sale (public excluded) – no mention of which property, of course.

    • The disproportionate loss of so many convenient parking spaces in the Central Business District (CBD) – for a small enough number of commuting cyclists – is strongly antagonistic to all users of the central city as well as to Chamber of Commerce attempts to support small businesses.
      Where’s the cost benefit analysis?
      Welcome, car-users, to UNfriendly Dunedin, given the sad history of council-imposed parking changes and now this… we don’t want your business. PO.

  58. Chill out! It is only 200 parking spaces lost. Surely that is a small enough price to pay so the six or seven cyclists (on a fine day) can have free passage. Tell that to the hospital visitors on a grotty day. If Lee Vandervis plays his hand well at the Monday meeting he could get votes from a whole host of unlikely sources. Interesting timing from Cull, MacTavish and co. which might backfire on them. Then again, apathy might stay embedded as per usual.

    • Hey Calvin – could be a good meeting to show up in the Public Gallery. Clearing the diary.

      Dunedin City Council
      Last council meeting for this trimester:
      Monday 23 September 2013 at 1pm
      Council Chamber, Municipal Chambers

      Items:
      – DRAFT Dunedin City Transport Strategy
      – NZTA seeking DCC notes options for cycleway on (SH1) one-way system (huge loss of central city car parks)

    • Calvin Oaten
      September 19, 2013 at 12:43 pm
      You say ….“Chill out! It is only 200 parking spaces lost. Surely that is a small enough price to pay so the six or seven cyclists (on a fine day) can have free passage.”

      What’s wrong with you Calvin, loosing your touch? The council can tell the property department to build a car parking building – bit like their Wall Street lurk, in that ‘dangerous and spooky’ waste of space playground that the hospital has. The property department could make a financial ‘killing’ (no pun here). A Multi-storey flat slab $8,800–$16,000 m2 for a small investment of circa $15m – $20m it could accommodate those 200 all day parking spaces no sweat. Could likely gross $2m p.a. An ‘el cheapo’ Dunedin version probably half that cost and double the profit. – just the ticket for the council.

      Mick

      • What about the existing DCC empty-ish carpark buildings ? Great King St (close to hospital), Lower Moray Place… Few shoppers like using them. Then there was Don Anderson’s proclamation a couple of years back in a public Spatial Plan meeting that as a planner he was consulting on a possible underground carpark building in the university/hospital area… Exciting times.

    • John P.Evans, council nominee

      With the loss of parking spaces Calvin is there any commensurate reduction in the number of parking meter motor cyclists?

  59. Elizabeth; isn’t it Monday the 23rd?

    Yep!

  60. The problem Mick, is that the transport people in the DCC are too lazy or stupid to efficiently run a parking building for the people, so they ‘lease out’ all their buildings to ‘Wilson Parking’ who not only cover the lease costs but also make a profit. How? By increasing the charges to where the people provide the profits without even having to fill the buildings. Hence the claim that the buildings are under utilised, therefore the argument is that there is no shortage of parking spaces. Could it be because it is unaffordable for some? Would the transport people know that? Would they care, because they have removed the bother as far as they are concerned? That is the sort of angle Dave and Jinty should be more aware of if they were not so concerned with putting people on cycles. Funny that.

    • Calvin Oaten
      September 19, 2013 at 4:41 pm
      in response to Elizabeth

      I should have known better that to poke the hornet’s nest Calvin! – I couldn’t resist.

      But Dave and Jinty might have another higher agenda here like perhaps ‘saving the planet’. Think of all the co2 they would have saved by encouraging cyclists and discouraging motorists. Such mundane considerations as making a profit to maybe reduce the losses on other unmentionable council ventures might not be so important for them.

      Mick

  61. Cyclist

    Having visited the NZTA office this morning to view the plans for the new cycleway. I noticed that they are to include a retractable roof along the entire route of the cycle way. It will open on fine days and be closed on wet days. The idea behind it is to attract more cyclist to use it knowing that if they ride into town on a fine morning, they can be assured that any weather change that may occur during the day , they will be able to ride home in dry conditions.

  62. John P.Evans, council nominee

    It’s not April Fool’s day for some months??

  63. Jock strap

    We thought the stadium was an April fools day comment John, but at the end of the day the ratepayers ended up being the fools. Every day is April fools day with this council, anything is possible.

  64. Cyclist

    John. I suggest that you go and get a copy of the plan. It shows where flowers boxes will be placed, also there are areas allocated for drink stations, and rest areas. Further into town they are going to accommodate mobility scooters into the cycle way. I believe that they have named the north end Jimbo’s Way and the south end Pensioners Way. The south end name will be in recognition of the mobility scooters area. Multi use, sounds a bit like the stadium.

  65. Jimbo is like a ‘bad dream’. He just keeps on cropping up with imbecilic ideas and ‘visions’. I thought we had got rid of him about three years ago, but no, like the proverbial bad penny here he is again screwing the city with his nutty ways. How he got that job is one of life’s mysteries.

  66. Phil

    You missed out a step in the Parking Building circle of life chain, Calvin. City Property own the buildings. They picked them up free of charge from City Parking. Actually, that’s not strictly true. They charged City Parking to take the buildings off City Parking’s hands. They then lease those buildings (formally owned by City Parking) to…… wait for it….. City Parking. As these are “commercial properties”, City Property puts a nice profit margin onto the lease price. City Parking aren’t in the business of operating car parking buildings, that’s why they unloaded them in the first place. So they buy that service from Wilsons. Naturally, Wilsons ain’t no one’s charity, so they take a tidy profit for their efforts.

    City Property have built car parking buildings in the past, Mick. The Lower Moray Place car park building is a recent example. They had to end up practically giving away the rentable space (like Wall Street) and the only money they make from parking charges is the internal rental that they receive from City Parking. There is no actual money involved.

    • Dave McKenzie specials. John Gray architect, fishing buddy.

    • Ah so! – I see it all now – the master stroke is for Jimbo to pressure the council to sterilise the parking on the one way system for non cyclists and set off the chain reaction to develop the car parks to increase the charges for the ratepayer – the man’s a genius – give that man a chocolate fish. Dave should ask him back to run the show from the front.

  67. Thanks for that Phil. It always helps to get the gaps filled in. The net result is that the City Property builds false illusions about their property portfolio, City Parking is just plain ‘thick and obtuse’, Wilsons Parking get to cream the profits, the public get to either use, by paying through the nose, or not use, thus leaving the perception that there is surplus parking in the city so it is of no consequence the loss of 200 to 400 spaces in order to facilitate clear passage for half a dozen cyclists who only really want to go where it is flat. The council planners (I use this term advisedly) get to push the ‘holier than thou’ mantra of Dave Cull and Jinty MacTavish. And to cap it all, we the rate payers get to service another $40 million odd of debt. Watch the mugs re-elect this shower.

    • Supposedly, no decisions by council until public consultation… Therefore, time to join the dots in writing for the general public and some media to grasp implications. The new council is likely to be a nightmare any which way. But, the job we all have is to pressure that council more than has ever been achieved to date. When the DCC chief executive says there should be no new major capital projects in the next ten years, and we see the G(debt)D crew and council staff already ignoring that… it’s time to lose all complacency.

      • “Mail order” shopping – online now – is a serious threat to bricks’n’mortar shops already. People cruise the shops to look at products then go online to order them at the best price. Meanwhile business owners have to additional costs of rates, now the DCC is adding disincentives to people to even come into their shops to browse. Why go to that trouble if there is a returns policy from the online merchant? The additional costs of returning goods, and the possibiliy that the local trader’s price was much the same, are balanced by the cost and time-wasting involved in coming to town.
        You might stop for a sit-down and a coffee while you were in the CBD. You can’t get a coffee online – but if you stay home you can make your own, drink it while you’re doing your shopping online. Eat something you made at home or picked up from somewhere with its own free parking.

        Jinty, Daaave & their cyclist buddies had better chop up the other planks in their sustainability platform and shop, shop, shop. Otherwise their legacy will be the addition of – the GIFTING of – 3 words to the CBD: the Central Not So Much Business District.

        • Hype O'Thermia

          This is why the DCC should stop messing around with the CBD unless it’s what retailers and money-spending (not planet-saving utopians) ordinary people want. No more “build it and they will adjust because it’s good for them” carpark reductions, parking cost increases, traffic “calming” that results in people finding another route. No more gouging businesses – nor the rest of us because we can’t spend what’s already been taken off us by council charges.
          Online ain’t going away, Daaave:
          “….buckling up for a rough ride are local retailers, both online and offline, as they check out the latest quarterly online retail survey from BNZ. The survey shows that online retail grew 11.9 per cent over the last quarter, almost three times the rate of offline retail which grew at 3.2 per cent.

          However the bulk of online growth is looking outward. International online retail sales grew at 16 per cent over the quarter, whereas domestic online sales only grew at 6 per cent.

          While domestic online retailers still make up 60 per cent of all digital sales, increasing amounts of buyer dollars are heading overseas.

          This flight to online, particularly to overseas retailers, is driven by price and range and then given a supercharged push by social media and online targeting. And some sectors are travelling faster than others.

          A year ago, research house Frost and Sullivan found clothing accounted for the biggest category of online spend at 22 per cent, followed by electrical and electronic goods (20 per cent) and recreational/sporting goods (12 per cent).

          However the fresh BNZ data shows department store shopping, recreational goods and media, and grocery/liquor now account for 64 per cent of all growth in online purchasing….” http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/money/10192551/New-law-gives-local-merchants-the-edge

        • Elizabeth

          Now those stats, Hype, tell us that businesses should evolve without Council’s corporal punishment to city shopping – as wrought by the dimwit urban design team and policified transportation planners whose shelf life rarely extends beyond 3 years before they push off to another centre (the ones stuck here for longer are, well, stuck as little hitlers often get stuck). Dunedin is too small (although it has one heck of a long main street) for greenie-eyed tsunami thinkers to let rip with academic ideas. From the 1860s in particular this has been a frontier kinda town but that isn’t emerald or lime hued in the key of Jinters and Daaave. Best to tarseal over those two, a bit retro this – like SITE architects in the good ol’ US of A, famous for their store and carpark designs.

  68. Jock strap

    Elizabeth: No Major capital projects for the next ten years? What about this newbie in the oddity this morning. Mosgiel, a $9 million new pool. (9% rate increase) Is anybody actually listening to the DCC chief executive ?

    • Jock strap. It’s nearly Christmas after all. Weatherall is leaving council trying to sew up a legacy project. Like I say, some of us should get to and record Monday’s council meeting. The mayor is too tame to stop the ‘councillor panic’ for new capital projects. Anyway, DCC can borrow more and more money, can’t it. Only if ratepayers say so.
      To Court, it is.

      ### ODT Online Fri, 20 Sep 2013
      New Mosgiel pool preferred option
      By Debbie Porteous
      A decision about whether to proceed with a longed-for new pool in Mosgiel will be made on Monday. A working party considering Dunedin’s future swimming needs has recommended the council consider providing a new $8.95 million pool facility in Mosgiel before expanding Moana Pool in the central city.The aquatic facilities working party suggests the council consider building the pool facility in Mosgiel within five years.
      Read more

  69. Good old Colin. He is out of here so no mud will stick to him. $8.95 million excluding land costs. How can you exclude land costs? Suspend it in mid air? Be a bit radical. Sign this off on Monday, and if the same format is returned for next term we can expect at least $60m plus right off the blocks, as soon as they park their cycles, and get their feet under the table. That is Dave Cull’s understanding of running a conservative, financially prudent council. God help us.

    • Check out these words from the ODT
      Mon, 29 Oct 2012

      Council figures showed consolidated debt – spread across the council and its companies – had risen to $616 million by the end of the 2011-12 financial year on June 30, including core council debt of $216 million.

      The Mayor…” The council had, this term, realised the need for more “headroom” in its budgets, to respond to any unforeseen demand for spending. A period of consolidation was likely to last five or six years before there was room for major new projects, if required. The council would have to rely more on partnerships and other ways of funding projects such as those identified in the city’s new economic development strategy.” (Link)

      Well, don’t seem to be taking much heed of these pearls of wisdom from the mayor. We seem to be going ‘full steam ahead’ with these new ‘strategies’ and ‘projects’ like there was to be no tomorrow.

      p.s. Is “Jimbo” the new partner? – that would make sense.
      Mick

  70. Mick, that was at the end of 2011-12. I suggest it might be around $650m by the end of August 2013, but they are never going to disclose that this side of the election.

  71. Calvin
    Sure, but it ain’t getting any better – the point is that they have known this information for a considerable time – yet the profligate tendencies continue unabated – like crack cocaine addicts.

    • If we were Kaipara ratepayers we’d take DCC to the High Court.

      • I notice that the actual debt works out to be about 3.2% of the city’s capital value and about 13% of its G.D.P. which I see is estimated at about $5b. These are huge burdens on a city with a shrinking economy. The concern I have is that to add any large items of capital expenditure at this time such as the Transportation Strategy and the new Pool at Mosgiel seems reckless. It is clear that city has already borrowed to the limits of its ability for its recent large capital expenditure projects that include the stadium, Toitu Settlers museum, the Town Hall refurbishing and various roading projects. The council knows this

        This is borne out by a report dated 16 August 2010 about borrowing for major capital expenditure that said “With the addition of these borrowings the expected 2010/11 financial year end debt servicing costs will exceed the limits imposed by the Liability Management Policy …. Gross interest expense, according to this policy, should not exceed 20% of total rates revenues, and should not be greater than 8% of total operating revenues. The interest expense on the proposed drawdown is included is included in the 2010/11 Annual Plan and is estimated at 22.5% of rates revenues, and 9.7% of total operating revenue”.

        {Link to DCC Report (see page 3). -Eds}

        Report – Council – 16/08/2010 (PDF, 322.5 KB)
        Security for Borrowings

        • I well remember that Mick, sat in on the meeting and still have the report. What you quote was profound then, more so now. Written by Ms Howard, and signed off by Mr Stephens.

  72. Yes Elizabeth profound indeed and as much as what was not said but left to read between the lines as what was said.
    Mick

    • ### ch9.co.nz September 20, 2013 – 7:12pm
      Penultimate meeting looks set to be long, and possibly fruitful
      The Dunedin City Council’s penultimate meeting for the year looks set to be long, and possibly fruitful.
      Video

      “Fruitful” ?
      I have other words for it.

  73. John P.Evans, council nominee

    The questions I’ve got are
    Now that vehicles are pari passu with cycles and mobility scooters
    1. Will the DCC now sell the 4 trucks necessary to pick up the 720 dogs annually (1 dog every two days which would be a bad record for a taxi driver) and carry the Great Danes on the back of the bike?
    2. Will the DCC parking stasi relinquish the motorcycles and replace them with bicycles or mobility scooters?

    • John, at this rate pedestrians will be repeatedly ticketed as vagrants, to pay for the stadium. Don’t even think of taking any air. Life as we knew it is over, except for Great Danes. It’s the new world order.

  74. Meeting of Dunedin City Council
    23 September 2013 at 1pm
    Council Chamber, Municipal Chambers

    Agenda – Council – 23/09/2013 (PDF, 110.6 KB)

    Report – Council – 23/09/2013 (PDF, 458.7 KB, new window)
    Tourism Dunedin Annual Report 2013.
    Download the Tourism Dunedin Annual Report.

    Report – Council – 23/09/2013 (PDF, 24.8 KB)
    Warm Dunedin Targeted Rates Scheme

    Report – Council – 23/09/2013 (PDF, 1.3 MB)
    Otago Rural Fire District Proposal

    Report – Council – 23/09/2013 (PDF, 7.2 MB)
    Proposed Responsible Camping Policy and Camping Control Bylaw 2013

    Report – Council – 23/09/2013 (PDF, 2.3 MB)
    Aquatic Facilities – Addressing Capacity Constraints and Maintenance Issues

    Report – Council – 23/09/2013 (PDF, 5.8 MB)
    Cycle/Pedestrian Safety on One-Way Sections of State Highway 1 – An Update

    Report – Council – 23/09/2013 (PDF, 7.8 MB)
    Proposed Transport Strategy Amendments following Public Consultation

    • JimmyJones

      For Monday’s meeting the name of the Transport Strategy report and its description in the agenda is deliberately obscure. The name “Proposed Transport Strategy Amendments following Public Consultation” hides the purpose of agenda item 22 (b) which is to have the council vote on adopting the final Transport Strategy following consultation and the deliberations of the Hearings Panel. The agenda description and the report name should read: “Adoption of the Transport Strategy”.

  75. If they were honest they would come right out and say that “it is war on the motor car”. The aim is to raise the portion of population who will cycle, walk or take a bus from 16% to 40% by 2024.
    Note is made of fuel prices escalating due to diminishing supplies of oil. That is a fundamental denial of the facts. A little bit of research would tell them that in all probability oil will fall to $70 to $80 US per barrel in the next five years or less. The USA will become a net oil exporter. Texas, has increased production exponentially, as is the Bakken fields in the Dakotas. Fracking (whether they like it or not) has expanded oil and gas reserves in the North American/Canadian fields exponentially, to the point where “peak oil” is pushed out another hundred years or so. New upgrades of shale oil reserves are being documented in Europe, UK, South America, Australia, Asia, in fact all round the planet. All down to new and expanding technology. Like it or lump it, fossil fuels will become relatively cheaper and the car is here to stay. Eventually, technology will develop alternative fuels (hydrogen most likely) for the car, but all other by-products of oil will carry on. This whole emphasis on climate change and fossil fuels could well find Dunedin cast up on the beach and left behind totally. Meanwhile expenditure is scheduled to escalate if this Transport Strategy is implemented in its recommended form, the public at large will be seriously compromised in the interests of the minority, and business and retail will suffer incrementally. A prudent administration would simply leave it lying on the table to be revisited by the incoming elected body. The whole thing should be researched from a more realistic standpoint and brought up to date with developments unfolding as we speak, in both oil and gas reserves, as well as latest results on global warming / sea level rises, Arctic ice packs and climate change. There looks to be some serious revelations on just how wrong the IPCC has been and just how the overdue latest report from that body is received, if and when they can get around to publishing with the minimum amount of egg on their faces.

    • Calvin Oaten commented on Draft Dunedin City Transport Strategy.

      “If they were honest they would come right out and say that “it is war on the motor car.” The aim is to raise the portion of population who will cycle, walk or take a bus from 16% to 40% by 2024…..” and
      “This whole emphasis on climate change and fossil fuels could well find Dunedin cast up on the beach and left behind totally. Meanwhile expenditure is scheduled to escalate if this Transport Strategy is implemented in its recommended form,”….”. The whole thing should be researched from a more realistic standpoint and brought up to date with developments unfolding as we speak, in both oil and gas reserves, as well as latest results on global warming / sea level rises, Arctic ice packs and climate change. There looks to be some serious revelations on just how wrong the IPCC has been and just how the overdue latest report from that body is received, if and when they can get around to publishing with the minimum amount of egg on their faces.”

      I couldn’t agree more. This whole document has been captured by the alarmists whose main thrust is based upon fear and using the pretext of safety and the ‘precautionary principle’ to put into place a project that has no defined benefits of any value that I can see.

      Their whole argument regarding energy is based upon peak oil that Calvin has demolished above and the out of date hysteric generated by the IPCC .In this context. It is worth noting Roy Spencer’s comments below.

      A Turning Point for the IPCC…and Humanity?
      September 17th, 2013 by Roy W. Spencer, Ph. D.

      ‘My main point is that nothing stands in the way of a popular theory (e.g. global warming) better than failed forecasts. We are now at the point in the age of global warming hysteria where the IPCC global warming theory has crashed into the hard reality of observations. A few of us are not that surprised, as we always distrusted the level of faith that climate modellers had in their understanding of the causes of climate change.
      I continue to suspect that, in the coming years, scientists will increasingly realize that more CO2 in the atmosphere is, on the whole, good for life on Earth. Given that CO2 is necessary for life, and that nature continues to gobble up 50% of the CO2 we produce as fast as we can produce it, I won’t be that surprised when that paradigm shift occurs, either.’

      Mick

    • Or this from The Spectator

      Finally, the IPCC has toned down its climate change alarm. Can rational discussion now begin?
      The Spectator 21 September 2013

      ‘Next week, those who made dire predictions of ruinous climate change face their own inconvenient truth. The summary of the fifth assessment report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) will be published, showing that global temperatures are refusing to follow the path which was predicted for them by almost all climatic models. Since its first report in 1990, the IPCC has been predicting that global temperatures would be rising at an average of 0.2° Celsius per decade. Now, the IPCC acknowledges that there has been no statistically significant rise at all over the past 16 years.

      It is difficult to over-emphasise the significance of this report. The IPCC is not simply a research body making reports and declarations which are merely absorbed into political debate. Its word has been taken as gospel, and its research has been used to justify all manner of schemes to make carbon-based energy more expensive while subsidising renewable energy.”

      So much of the stuff that is likely to drive the Dunedin Transportation Strategy is essentially based on this IPCC material. This report should “give pause” for our councillors to questions some of the ‘assumptions’ that this strategy embraces without question.

      Mick

      • Mick, Calvin and all commenters, apologies for late moderation this morning. Your material is great – suggest you send each councillor the material with the links to source (important!) today if you have time. Their email addresses are given at the DCC website. To everyone, that is, who is voting at tomorrow’s council meeting – most won’t be reading What if?.
        And load it onto their blogs and Facebook pages or tweet it to them. Help get the message out. Don’t leave it until the next ‘public consultation’ rounds. Go forth, people :)

  76. Calvin Oaten commented on Draft Dunedin City Transport Strategy.

    “If they were honest they would come right out and say that “it is war on the motor car.” The aim is to raise the portion of population who will cycle, walk or take a bus from 16% to 40% by 2024

    I couldn’t agree more. This whole document has been captured by the alarmists whose main thrust is based upon fear and using the pretext of safety and the ‘precautionary principle’ to put into place a project that has no defined benefits of any value that I can see.

    Their whole argument regarding energy is based upon peak oil that Calvin has demolished above and the out of date hysteric generated by the IPCC .In this context. It is worth noting Roy Spencer’s comments below.

    A Turning Point for the IPCC…and Humanity?
    September 17th, 2013 by Roy W. Spencer, Ph. D.

    ‘My main point is that nothing stands in the way of a popular theory (e.g. global warming) better than failed forecasts. We are now at the point in the age of global warming hysteria where the IPCC global warming theory has crashed into the hard reality of observations. A few of us are not that surprised, as we always distrusted the level of faith that climate modellers had in their understanding of the causes of climate change.
    I continue to suspect that, in the coming years, scientists will increasingly realize that more CO2 in the atmosphere is, on the whole, good for life on Earth. Given that CO2 is necessary for life, and that nature continues to gobble up 50% of the CO2 we produce as fast as we can produce it, I won’t be that surprised when that paradigm shift occurs, either.’

  77. On further reflection, could it be that the Transport Strategy is no more than a smokescreen at this time? It has been given serious prominence for what should be a minor issue, to mollify a vocal pressure group, aided and abetted by the Mayor and Cr MacTavish. Why?
    Well, in August 2012 I had requested, and received hard copies of the Y/E 30th June 2012 annual reports of DVL, DVML, DCHL and the DCC. In these it was revealed that DVL had posted a deficit of ($12.891m), DVML a deficit of ($3.214m), DCHL ($5.087m) and the DCC showing a consolidated debt of ($623.721m). All shocking stuff.
    Now, despite several requests (to as late as 19 September) nothing has been forthcoming. I have searched in vain for any hint of these reports in the ODT, nothing there. It now seems obvious that none of this information will be available before this council closes for business in preparation for the election. Last piece of meaningful business, the ‘Transport Strategy’!
    Call me cynical, but could it be that our stalwart for open governance and transparency, Dave Cull and his tight cabal, know that the news in these reports are all bad, and therefore not a good look for them in the upcoming election? Why else could it be that this information, vital for the public to make informed decisions be so withheld? There is no acceptable answer as to why these reports should not be available prior to the election.
    We vote blindfolded, and should perhaps be aware of “the ides of November”

  78. Hype O'Thermia

    Fear is a great unifier. A common enemy – Nazi German, commies, or natural disaster as in Christchurch – motivates both useful unity and the putting-aside of everyday differences in the struggle against the greater threat. Sacrifice becomes not merely unavoidable but a mark of decency, to the point where it becomes competitive and people strive to be seen increasingly willing to “do their bit” or more.
    Politicians exploit this to keep everyone continually engaged, thus the collection of iron fences and household pots and pans in Britain during WW2 “to build tanks and aircraft” irrespective of the actual suitability of the metals.

    • Hmmm. That twerp Thomson (THE WALRUS) is a psychologist.

    • JimmyJones

      Hype O’Thermia: Dave Cull and others know the marketing power of fear. He will have read this quote from an influential book (1991) from the Club Of Rome (see Wikipedia). In this quote they seem to be claiming that they invented the Global Warming Theory:
      “The ploy of finding a scapegoat is as old as mankind itself – when things become too difficult at home, divert attention to adventure abroad. Bring the divided nation together to face an outside enemy, either a real one, or else one invented for the purpose. With the disappearance of the traditional enemy, the temptation is to use religious or ethnic minorities as scapegoats, especially those whose differences from the majority are disturbing. Every state has been so used to classifying its neighbours as friend or foe, that the sudden absence of traditional adversaries has left governments and public opinion with a great void to fill. New enemies have to be identified, new strategies imagined, and new weapons devised. In searching for a common enemy against whom we can unite, we came up with the idea that pollution, the threat of global warming, water shortages, famine and the like, would fit the bill. In their totality and their interactions these phenomena do constitute a common threat which must be confronted by everyone together.”

      • Save the planet, JimmyJones. Save the planet!

        • JimmyJones

          Yes, Elizabeth, that’s the message: we are all going to be consumed by floods and fried by the heat – unless – we all become believers in their political/religious dogma. The UN used to call it Agenda 21 and then they called it Sustainable Development, often shortened to Sustainability and used as a dog-whistle by politicians like Cull and Jinty etc. Sustainability is a cute name for a nasty bunch of political agendas, so be careful not to confuse it with the normal meaning of the word sustainability. Our crusading local politicians take advantage of this confusion.

  79. Jimmy-Jones; do you really think that Cull and Jinty are that smart. I rather prefer the idea that they have been captured by our local academics. The OUSA seems to be loaded with the AGW folk. Of course, it is not a problem to them as they are insulated from the ‘rough and tumble’ of making a living and getting by. Easy to be a protesting zealot with a full belly.

  80. Hype O'Thermia

    People don’t necessarily have to be scheming and plotting to get involved in schemes such as, currently, sustainability.
    Sustainability, if you take away the planet-saving vs climate change faith positions, is old-fashioned common sense.
    Don’t be wasteful. Be respectful to the earth and try to leave it better than you found it. Put something by for hard times, preferably enough so you can share with those who didn’t have your advantages of health and other resources – and luck. Invest wisely, plant productive trees and bushes and learn how to use their produce. Invest in education, your own and teaching others till we’re all handy at some useful things, sewing & mending, cooking & baking, building & technology, gardening and orchard maintenance. Investment isn’t just about money, it’s other things like planting those food plants, collecting seaweed and compost materials to improve the garden soil. Investment is deferred gratification, with a well-thought-out plan of how this will return greater riches in return for short-term efforts and by resisting instant temptations.

    INVEST WISELY… pity about that part, it rules out leaping on shiny bandwagons. Tough luck, Jinty and Daaave and fellow planet-savers.

  81. JimmyJones
    September 22, 2013 at 3:26 pm

    Says….“Yes, Elizabeth….. Our crusading local politicians take advantage of this confusion”.

    The document uses a lot of space, 11 pages, quoting other documents using language whose sole purpose seems to be to overpower the reader with heavy but in my view largely meaningless, discussion. It seems that the reader is expected to submit to what they obviously think is a compelling exposition (Not). It quotes National Context, Central Government direction, Government Funding Priorities etc etc including a raft of local stuff so you better roll over and tick all the boxes forthwith. But this is all rather flimsy and the words are mainly vacuous ‘feel good’ stuff like ‘a liveable city’, a ‘thriving and diverse community’ and so on. Very tired stuff and underwhelming.

    The ‘frighteners’ are then applied under items such as Road safety, rising fuel costs (the dreaded peak oil – see Calvin above), private motor vehicle dependence (like alcohol addiction), Multi Agency responsibility (read you have to fall into line), Public Health (read fumes and co2), Transport Equity (read ratepayer subsidy), and Infrastructure threat and constraints. These are wonderful and include climate change (already discussed), but the rest are well known and have been canvassed and discussed for decades. Not new.

    When you finally get to the strategy it really doesn’t say much at all. Slow vehicles near schools and other places, cut out parking in town, and try to shunt freight onto rail – that’s been talked about for centuries, everybody on their bikes or walk – yes.
    Then they have a set of goals – probably turn out to be ‘own goals’.
    As you say Agenda 21 is written all over this stuff.

    Mick

      • Hype O'Thermia

        I’ll take cycle safety more seriously when cyclists do.
        The militants are loud about motorists’ faults (motorists are in general selfish and inconsiderate) and very very quiet about the large number of cyclists who make feeble or zero effort to take responsibility for themselves by using a light fore AND aft, something that has more impact than a depressed glow-worm in a jam-jar, and wearing reflective (not merely neon) jackets or arm and leg bands.
        Till a large majority of them show appropriate concern for their own survival I am reluctant to see the community as a whole paying for cycle lanes. The last thing we need is greater numbers of dark-clad cyclists with an average of 1 light per cycle – that figure includes the sensible responsible ones who write indignantly to the odt online about how careful they are compared with motorists. I’d like to see the cycle lobbyists work on the irresponsible cyclists ahead of working on the planet-saving politicians.
        Another thing, where on earth did those “statistics” come from about the percentage of Dunedin people who cycle regularly, and those who really-truly wish they could regularly cycle to work except that they’re nervous while there aren’t cycle lanes?
        Am I, oddly, out and about only during those infrequent periods when there are dozens of cars travelling for every one bicycle?

        • John P.Evans, council nominee

          At the Opoho candidates meeting the nominees and the audience were asked how many had biked to work more than three times. I think Dave Cull answered in the affirmative and a maximum of two in the audience. When the noms were asked about the cycle theories, the greater Dunedin stooges all said that it was very good for tourism, as did Christine Garey who is a councilophile and Dave remarked that the transport agency were paying the majority of the bill and Dunedin was getting a great “Deal”

          It should be noted that the left whether loony or not are far better organised than normal people, and that the #1 priority of dunedin’s citizens for more activity for jobs for people is paid lip service to and stands well behind saving whales and growing the traffic light department.

        • Thanks John, the Opoho candidate sessions are always well-attended. Round 2 there tomorrow night. If people missed tonight’s, turn up Monday – details at DCC website “candidate events”.

          http://www.dunedin.govt.nz/your-council/electoral-information/candidate-events

          STV Events (2) – poster:
          http://www.dunedin.govt.nz/__data/assets/pdf_file/0011/341678/PoliticsPoster2013-1.pdf

        • @John P.Evans, council nominee
          September 22, 2013 at 11:29 pm
          John
          Remember that in Opoho the residents would contain a lot of Uni staff who are well organised ‘lefties’ and into control freakery, preferably using other people’s money. Dave’s and Christine Geary’s comment as you observe underscores that.

          Mick

        • There’s a few familiar faces appearing at candidate meetings, which have been fairly green tinged for the last two weeks. Even the ODT/Chamber of Commerce forum had a strong Green contingent. The notable difference last night was the Cull support team out in force as well – which is also green leaning.

          Green activists think they are saving the city and saving the world and are motivated to promote their ideology. Middle Dunedin is mostly apathetic or observe quietly.

          This is why I think it’s important to improve engagement including accurate measurement of actual opinion rather than letting the activist fringe stoke up an apparent majority by loudness of voices, numbers of submitters and other ways of using the system to promote disproportionate to their actual numbers.

  82. Anonymous

    I’ve seen as many cyclists flaunt road rules and their safety as frequently as those in vehicles. Yesterday I watched a cyclist not hesitate to pass a car parked at a red light and power through that stop light and then even more foolishly hog the road while a car in the right pulled into the lane. I suspect the driver would not have even been aware of the cyclist beside them until they suddenly appeared in front of them. The cyclist had clearly spent a lot of money on bike and garb but maybe should spend a little time researching road rules and mass.

  83. Concerns were also expressed about the safety of cyclists mixing with heavy vehicles while using on-road cycling lanes, which Malcolm Dixon described as a ”recipe for disaster”.

    ### ODT Online Mon, 23 Sep 2013
    Council candidates face their electors
    By Chris Morris
    There was heckling and applause as Dunedin City Council candidates were divided over oil and gas exploration at the first of a two-night election forum in Opoho last night.
    The reactions came as 13 of the city’s Central Ward council candidates set out their election stalls in front of about 120 people at the Opoho Presbyterian Church.
    The two-hour forum was a largely restrained affair, as candidates – including mayoral candidates also running for council seats – were given 90 seconds each to pitch to the audience before answering a series of curly questions.
    Read more

    • A significant statement from Cull on oil and gas exploration. After fence sitting on offshore drilling for a while he has now settled into expressing his now standard opposition to it, no surprise there.

      Cull also said that he saw no point in lobbying for drilling related business for Dunedin because the companies will just decide what they want to do for themselves.

      This is a symptom of one of his biggest failings this term – lack of action in seeking and protecting jobs and economic development.

      The questions now should be:
      Does he think lobbying/promoting is too hard?
      Does he think lobbying/promoting is futile?
      Is he ideologically conflicted and actually wants to sustain Dunedin’s lack of growth malaise?

      Cull quotes projections where Dunedin’s population is expected to shrink – and he seems to accept that as what will happen and appears to have no motivation to fight against it. This is a major issue for the coming term if he is returned as mayor, especially if he gets a substantial majority – he has also said he is seeking a mandate to continue what he has been doing. And presumably not doing.

      • Pete George
        @September 23, 2013 at 11:44 am
        I think that you can easily determine the value and significance of Mayor Cull’s mayoralty Pete, by his own performance over the period.

      • Hype O'Thermia

        Pete, good letter from you in online oddity this morning re gas exploration risks vs other pollution risks in harbour. I’m relieved to see you coming out with actual opinions other than “consult more people” and “transparency”. This latter was a bigdeal Crater Dunedin catchword pre the last election, after which obscurity, commercial sensitivity & all the other secrecy practices continued as usual: transparency my arsk-yer-mother-fer sixpence!

        • Now at the council chamber awaiting start of the disasters!

        • I’ve got plenty of actual opinions and a willingness to debate strongly. I’ve made a few unpopular statements at meetings, but I’m prepared to say what I think.

          But transparency and engagement are still important – done properly, not selectively and dabbled at as they have done this term. It needs to be pushed much harder, and one way or another I’ll be doing that.

  84. Peter

    I see at the Opoho meeting there is the ODT comment that most of the candidates want the stadium to work. We all do……if it could.Three years in from the last election, it is still not working. We are still throwing additional money at it to–yes, you guessed it… make it work. Those candidates are duped and have no idea what to do. Did anyone suggest an independent cost/benefit analysis? Or were the candidates too scared/gutless to suggest this?
    I get the feeling that too many people are running away from dealing with the ongoing stadium disaster which surely will upset any best intentioned council plans to get us out of the financial mire.There is no commitment to secure the remaining bulk of the private funding and make those, who connived to get the stadium, to pay their fair share.
    When you don’t face up to your problems and try to run away from them, you ultimately lose.

    • Item 21 on agenda, the resolution carried (for cycleway…), now starting item 22 transport strategy

      • [plain English] Resolution to adopt transport strategy – carried.
        Council is now in public excluded part of the meeting.

        • Chamber (COC) brought into the Strategy fold (a bit like the buildings that pancaked at Christchurch) via Cr Staynes —with his “focus on economic development for the city” and fronting with the lines, as a patronising ferret would do: “stop looking at the past”… business, and cars, are part of the process… BUT he did say prior to, “we will see less vehicles on key arterial routes” !!!!!!

          Too much for me to write just yet (still recovering) about said council meeting, it was an anticlimax —and only goes to show how many sheep are in thrall of LUNATIC Greater Debt Dunedin. Since hey, the Mosgiel pool number also got passed.

        • Overview is that Cull’s council are all too chummy and part of the club – so there’s no proper critical debate or truly wide representation of our community possible.

          And Minty needs a deeper voice.

    • John P.Evans, council nominee

      Peter, there were 10-15 questions answered by all candidates, the ODT reported briefly on one answer to one question for some of the candidates.
      I suggested selling the stadium or giving it away to the university which was not reported, the question was is the stadium an asset, my answer no it is a commercial liability and as such should be sold, it should be noted when asset sales are suggested noone (not councillor noone) mentions the stadium as an asset!

      On Oil and Gas, a knowledgeable questioner asked whether we supported oil and gas drilling which is not the mandate of the council. She stated and this was the parameter of the question that gas drilling was almost risk free to the environment and that gas is 5 times more likely to be found than oil. Many of the candidates did not want Oil and gas exploration even if it was proven safe! Thats why there is no cars for Dunedin.
      Cull and Hudson and Ali Copeland stated that they had met with Shell’s representatives and that they had stated that nothing would determine the location of their facilities but Shell. It seems to me that from a negotiating standpoint that was pretty smart of Shell. But to believe that a deal will not be done is pretty naive. I suspect that we have some extremely innocent negotiators working on our behalf in the matter of support location for oil and gas drilling.

      • John P.Evans, council nominee
        September 23, 2013 at 9:37 pm
        Regarding the oil and gas exploration issue it is pure hubris on the part of any Dunedin councillor to imagine that we have any say or influence over this activity. On the other hand we would be queuing up begging for a piece of the action should anything be found anywhere near our coast. So who do they think they are fooling?

  85. amanda

    I wonder if Jinty will tell voters that Cull is all for oil drilling in the context of her helping him drag in some of the ‘green vote’ in order to get re-elected, since I see her smiling right next to him where ever his billboards are. No quesiton about it, politics is a hypocritical and power hungry game. Anything to get elected huh?

  86. Peter

    Thanks for that info on the stadium question, John. Dear old ODT and their little biases. Not surprised no-one could call the stadium an ‘asset’. They would have been howled down with derision.

    I find it amusing when you get the pro oil/gas people saying something along the lines, ‘Don’t worry, they are only likely to find gas, which is cleaner, and doesn’t have the spill factor risk.’

    Get real. If Anadarko, or any oil company, finds a huge Mo Fo vein of oil, do we really think they are going to say: ‘Oh Gosh. We’ve struck oil. We better leave it there coz the good people of Dunedin don’t want us to drill for oil because of the possible risks.’ Of course they will take the risk… as we will. This is classic manipulation to push the process slowly along to the point they want to arrive at….much like the stadium with the ‘conditions/lines in the sand’, which were intended to be broken all along.

    Footnote on GD candidate Ali Copeman. She owns an Events business called ‘AKB’. (This stands for ‘Ali Knows Best’) Need I say more.

  87. Peter

    Oh. I just re-read the report today on the Opoho meeting and Ali DOES call the stadium an ‘asset’. ‘Ali Knows Best’ (AKB)? I’m worried.

    • Read her tweets (they’re in public domain). She’s PRO stadium alright, she has her business flaunting it for events and conferences. Conflict, what conflict? May sneak in because of COC and GD. BAD MOVE on voters’ parts.

  88. Peter

    I am amazed at the fixed positions candidates take on issues with no intention of diverting from their script in the face of evidence/sound arguments to the contrary. This includes people whom I’ll probably end up having to vote for as the ‘lesser evils’. No wonder people turn off with the kind of crap we read about at the Opoho meeting last night. Very dispiriting.

  89. I’m astonished at the dismissal of the needs of car parks by Cull, Thompson and Staynes as reported in the ODT today:
    http://www.odt.co.nz/news/dunedin/274397/parking-put-aside-now-cycle-lane-idea-proceeds

    All astonishing is an apparent lack of facts to back up their idealism:
    “Mr Thompson said the perception that there were not many cyclists in Dunedin was incorrect and there was a healthy number in the city, although he did not have statistics.”

    More details: http://yourdunedin.org/2013/09/24/cycle-lanes-versus-car-parks/

    • The whole meeting was six hours and more of mediocrity from the Cull council.

    • Hype O'Thermia

      Pete George, “perception that there were not many cyclists in Dunedin was incorrect”. Someone has managed to count the invisible ones with the aid of technology, since the human eye cannot do it.
      This proves my point that the vast majority make no effort to look after themselves by being visible on the road with lights and reflective clothing. Indeed it makes my estimate of the ratio of responsible to irresponsible much worse and proves that cycle lanes are a waste of money for people who care so little for their own safety.

    • Lance

      Pete. It makes it easier to understand how $16 million went missing on his watch. He didn’t have the Statistics or a grip on reality then.

  90. Peter

    I’m afraid there is no Messiah at hand, with all the little messiahs,to lead us to ‘The Promised Land’. We have to face up to this reality.
    With Paul Orders’ departure – one of the good things that has happened under this council – we are facing an even bleaker future indeed.

    • http://www.odt.co.nz/news/dunedin/274401/orders-set-quit-council

      Yes Peter no surprises here. We’ve had searches at What if? for a week on Mr Orders and Cardiff. Clearly, something was on the cards. And so it’s happened.

    • Peter
      September 24, 2013 at 7:35 am
      You observed ‘With Paul Orders’ departure – one of the good things that has happened under this council – we are facing an even bleaker future indeed’.

      Yes and we do now want a repeat of the prolonged and damaging hiatus we had last time under Cull waiting for the appointment of the new Chief Executive (Paul Orders). That was a damaging episode in our recent political history. A ship without a rudder that is as such, both rudderless and leaderless.

  91. Peter

    He is a very shrewd and intelligent man whom I’m sure assessed his future here and decided it was time to split. (OK, the pull of home can be strong, but he was here for only two years and he is still young.) He would have realised, with the calibre of people on offer for council, there was very little quality and in time it would have looked bad for his CV in eventually getting a job back home. Why? Because, despite the best will in the world to reform the place, it would have been undone by the elected people he had to work with and he would have been badly tarred, professionally, by association.
    Very very sad to see him go, but I can hardly blame him.

  92. Russell Garbutt

    Paul Orders will be sadly and hugely missed. I think that he managed to ensure that many of those that were still running things at Council when he arrived are no longer there. I’m sure that many of the Councillors will try and claim credit for getting rid of some of the people we all know about, but the fact remains that the Councillors only employ the CEO. The CEO employs the rest and it was him and only him that put in place the changes that were necessary.

    I share Peter’s views in many ways about the calibre of those on offer to govern this City and how they could possibly reflect on Paul’s ability to manage the City in line with the governance policies from what very well turn out to be a rag-tag of light-weights, or people with single agendas or issues.

    Accompanied by the poor local MP’s, things don’t look all that well in the governance area.

    Paul Orders is a consummate manager and in my view it will not be realised for many years to come just how great a contribution he has made to the City.

  93. Peter

    Maybe the best hope for a reprieve might be to let this lot – or probably the next – drive the city financially into the ground, ASAP, and then the government has no choice but to act by appointing a Commissioner. We get rid of the lot of them in one sweep! Forever. Allelulia. Praise the Lord.

  94. Peter
    September 24, 2013 at 11:18 am

    Prescient

  95. Russell Garbutt

    The problem with that hope is that everyone relies on the abilities of the appointed Commissioner. The issues here in Dunedin stem from:

    * Not enough people of proven worth, abilities or integrity offering themselves for election, and as a consequence, too many people elected to Council that are there simply because they “always have been there”, or their names were somehow familiar. Familiarity does not equal ability.
    * An electorate poorly informed through mainstream media on the really important underlying factors behind issues,
    * Those with vested interests having on-going access to either key governance or management to further their own private agendas – sometimes with assistance from the media,
    * An appallingly apathetic electorate, disillusioned or having a feeling of lack of power to change what they feel is inevitable. No real sense of wanting to become involved.
    * The ability of past managers to move into the vacuum created by poor governance and follow their own agendas
    * The disgraceful attitude by those charged with ensuring compliance with sound business or legal practices. I include the OAG, the DIA, the NZ Police and others in this category. Just how often have we seen stupid, incompetent or dishonest Councils all over the country put their ratepayer bases under financial stress. Not one of these agencies seem either willing or capable, even when presented with clear evidence of either incompetence or worse, to act to protect those who they were set up to protect.
    * The failure to attend to core business in favour of grandiose schemes – the stadium is a shining example.
    * The unwillingness of Councils or, it seems anyone, to hold people to account for their actions. I for one am sick to the back teeth of anyone who refuses to either accept responsibility and therefore accountability for decisions made in the face of overwhelming evidence contrary to those decisions. Ditto for those that deliberately withheld information.

    So, if some sort of mate of John Key was appointed to run Dunedin, what would happen to make it different? We have seen what the National Party did to conserve water quality in Canterbury – simply get rid of those that were seen to be against huge dairy irrigation projects. We have seen what has happened, and is happening in Kaipara where their debt is nothing as big as ours.

    The first step in recovery for Dunedin from the disastrous last decade is to get rid of all of those Councillors that helped put us where we are, and vote instead for those that have a genuine desire and ability to manage our finances and attend to core functions.

    • peter

      Russell. All your comments are apt. I’m feeling somewhat hysterical listening to most of the candidates! In such moods the instinct reaches immediately for the final solution… to borrow a phrase.

    • @Russell Garbutt
      September 24, 2013 at 12:21 pm
      Russell says “The problem with that hope is that everyone relies on the abilities of the appointed Commissioner. The issues here in Dunedin stem from:….”
      While I agree with the underlying truth all of Russell’s points above it might indeed come to the appointment of a Commissioner as a circuit breaker of this present position.
      The reality is however, as we can see with the present mountain of debt and all these new ‘strategies’ before us, that this council will continue on its ruinous path towards its ultimate demise and at our humiliation and cost.
      Nobody would want a commission appointed by John Key or anyone else for that matter but it might take just that sort of degradation of our democracy for us to take sufficient interest in the affairs of this city.
      In the meantime our industry and enterprise is wasting away as will indeed our life energy force. Maybe we have to sink to the bottom where the only direction left is up.

      • Russell Garbutt

        Mick, I don’t think that this central Government will want to act for a couple of reasons. One, it was them that assisted in putting us into this position through their “donation” to get the stadium underway. They will have a reluctance to admit to that – and they certainly haven’t learned much from the experience judging by their underhand financing of the new Chch stadium. Secondly, the vested interests in and around Dunedin – whether we refer to those interests as the Tartan Mafia or any other title, have very close ties to the established South Island National MPs and the current modus operandi. A Commissioner that gets ideas above their station may not agree with policies as easily as some of their current mates.

        It is easily shown that some Ministers – especially those connected with Local Government, the DIA, and the OAG – don’t want to allow much to intrude into the status quo.

        So, I think it more likely that Central Government is likely to adopt the position of “you put yourselves into this mess, you can dig yourselves out of it”. And the obvious way out of the mess is to sell assets to guess who, and to just hike up the rates.

        • @Russell Garbutt
          September 24, 2013 at 1:07 pm
          Says “So, I think it more likely that Central Government is likely to adopt the position of “you put yourselves into this mess, you can dig yourselves out of it”. And the obvious way out of the mess is to sell assets to guess who, and to just hike up the rates”.
          I take your point Russell – which leads to the obvious recent council activity of shaping up the only viable assets for disposal. Certainly John Key would approve of that – so we buy and build a ‘white elephant’ and pay for it with our real assets.

          Charming.

  96. It’s called ‘Democracy’. A huge con trick in which the people are led to believe that by voting every three years that they will get “what they want”. In fact, what they invariably get is “what they deserve”. If the people are not interested enough to take on board some of the issues and understand what is happening to them then it’s a case of “Caveat Emptor”.

  97. Whippet

    The new leader of the labour party has certainly shown his hand on what he thinks of Dunedin, and what we can expect from him, with his ranking of Dunedins two labour MPs.

  98. Peter

    University of Otago political scientist, Dr Bryce Edwards, made some rather good, pertinent comments in today’s ODT about our local Labour MPs. I like the way he pulls no punches.

    {Link http://www.odt.co.nz/news/dunedin/274405/duo-demoted-cunliffe-reshuffle -Eds}

  99. A plan for improving Dunedin’s transport network over the next 30 years was signed off by the Dunedin City Council recently. Debbie Porteous looks at what is in it for Mosgiel.

    ### ODT Online Wed, 9 Oct 2013
    Options for managing heavy traffic
    By Debbie Porteous
    The council’s integrated transport strategy includes much for Mosgiel. It promises to expand the inland port at North Taieri, slow traffic down in the Mosgiel town centre, and prioritise cyclists, pedestrians and public transport. It also promises to revisit parking issues.
    Most importantly, it identifies managing heavy traffic and freight through the centre of Mosgiel as the council’s highest priority after safety upgrades to the city centre (which it hopes to do between 2015 and 2018).
    The Mosgiel work could be funded by a mixture of council and New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) funding, although there is presently no money allocated for it in council budgets for the next 10 years. And none will be added, until a network operating plan specifying preferred routes for pedestrian, cycle, public transport and freight networks, is finalised with the community.
    The draft, although not included in the final strategy until more consultation with the community and stakeholders has been done, identifies Riccarton Rd and Dukes Rd as the priority freight routes for the future.
    Read more

    • Judy

      Two surveys conducted show that 85% of all heavy traffic entering Mosgiel is for the purpose of servicing Mosgiel. Why would you spend millions on a bypass to remove just 15%. Somebody in council needs to do their homework. I suppose after Saturday this whole issue of Mosgiel roading and the new swimming pool will once again be filed away until the next election.

    • ### dunedintv.co.nz October 9, 2013 – 7:00pm
      Your word on a separated cycleway
      With more and more cycle accidents on the one way streets of Dunedin, a proposal of a separated cycleway is being discussed. A similar system has been used in many places overseas, but some people are concerned at the loss of up to 400 (four hundred) car parks.
      Video

      ****

      [interim result]

      Ch39 Opinion Poll
      Do you support a separated cycleway on the one-way system, which could mean the loss of up to 400 car parks?
      Yes 46%
      No 54%
      Total votes: 112

  100. ### ODT Online Fri, 11 Oct 2013
    More safety upgrades suggested
    By Rosie Manins
    Cyclists and pedestrians are still at risk on Dunedin roads and footpaths, but proposals to improve safety are encouraging, an international road safety engineer says. Paul Hambleton, who grew up in Dunedin, has been visiting family and friends in the city while on holiday from his home in Sweden. He had looked at the draft transport strategy for Dunedin and said some proposed changes were in line with road safety standards overseas.
    Read more

    • John P.Evans, council nominee

      One of Dunedin’s greatest problems is that it wants to be like New York or London or even Sydney and take on board the solutions which bigger cities have chosen whether they are right or wrong.

      Dunedin has 120,000 people.

      China has over 1000 million, India over 800 million and the US over 300 million.

      Until they decide to save the planet we are piddling into a very strong wind whether one believes in anthropo climate change or not.

      Similarly, we have a wonderful small hilly city which citizens use to be able to go home for lunch.

      Now it takes 1/2 an hour to get out of town at 5 am in the morning due to the insane influence of TRAFFIC engineers unable to get a job in Sydney, London or New York but eager to practice their new found skills on the poor citizens of our fair city.

      What we should be doing in Dunedin is showing the way with no traffic lights, free parking for one hour, cyclist paths along the railway line, less than 300 stoppers in the DCC building and offering free rates to the University for another twenty years in return they take the stadium and release us from the ongoing 20 million losses annually.

      Will it happen?

      Not bloody likely with the stranglehold that the DCC and GD have over our lives.

      Surfers paradise and Monaco have been described as sunny places for shady people.

      Dunedin could be described as Paradise Lost.

      Oh. No that was Milton.

  101. I see Tony Avery suggests that if the DCC takes over the city’s transport from the ORC it will be effectively “fiscally neutral” Oh Yeah! just like “Jimbo’s” selling of the city’s engineering dept to Montgomery Watson Harza was. As soon as anyone in that building talks “fiscally neutral” head for the hills. Is there no-one left in that building that can remember the constant “hand wringing” over the costs of running the public transport for the city. Dear old Jean Mclean tried her best and it just couldn’t be made to work.
    Luckily, when councils were re-constructed by central government, transport was given to the regional councils. That at least brought government funding into it. Now it looks like we ratepayers will get it back again. That would be OK if we had some people with the wit to see that the existing format will never work. The smartest thing would be to privatise the system and then it would be put on a payable structure with the users paying for a profitable service. How would that happen you ask? Well for starters the private operators would immediately tailor the service to the market. Gone would be all the ‘huge dinosaurs’ currently wheezing emptily around the streets. In their places would be small people movers – 12 or 20 seat capacity, agile vans going where the people are and want to be. Frequencies would be assessed by the market (not bumptious bureaucrats) and the operators would set the agendas according to that market. Existing taxi companies come to mind as the obvious folk who know about these things. It would be competitive, in as much as it would compete with the private motor car as the present system does. The difference being that while the present service is beaten hands down, the private one would be nimble enough to get its share of the trade. If it didn’t, then that would be proof positive that no system would work. At least it would prove the point. The bureaucrats must not be let to set the rules or agendas otherwise it would be ‘dead in the water’ at birth.
    Would our DCC and ORC see it that way? An erosion of their empires? Not on your Nellie. So expect nothing to change except costs to the ratepayer.

    • Further to Calvin’s comment:

      ”I think it would be fair to say that both councils recognise that it makes as much sense, or more sense, for the city council to be running the public transport system.” –Cull

      ### ODT Online Sun, 20 Oct 2013
      DCC back on the buses?
      By Chris Morris
      One of the first major issues for the incoming Dunedin City Council to consider could be assuming control of the city’s public transport network. The proposal, yet to be presented to councillors, could result in responsibility for running the network being transferred from the Otago Regional Council (ORC) to the DCC.
      Read more

      • ### ODT Online Wed, 13 Nov 2013
        Dunedin bus lobby group to hold first meeting
        By Chris Morris
        A new lobby group pushing for an overhaul of Dunedin’s bus network hopes to follow in the footsteps of the city’s cycling advocates. Bus Go Dunedin is to hold its first full public meeting tonight, when it will elect a committee, spokesman Alex King said this week.
        Read more

        See https://www.facebook.com/busgodunedin

        Bus Go Dunedin: Bus Users and Supporters Group Otepoti Dunedin
        Public Meeting – Wednesday (today)
        Time: 7-9 pm
        Where: Former High Street School, High Street

  102. Jock strap

    Where does this leave the ORC. If they are unable to organize a simple thing like the city’s local public transport network, just what are they capable of. The ORC has made a complete stuff up of the regional water policy, and it should be noted that they are abdicating their responsibilities there by allowing their cronies to monitor themselves. How many elected regional councilors have financial connections with the farming lobby, and who has actually been paid by the farming lobby to work for them on irrigation developments?

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