Cr Vandervis offers full (and conditional!) apology

Last updated Wed, 29 Apr 2015 at 7:00 p.m.
Updated post Wed, 29 Apr 2015 at 6:12 p.m.

Received.

From: Lee Vandervis
Sent: ‎Wednesday‎, ‎29 ‎April‎ ‎2015 ‎4:22‎ ‎p.m.
To: Sue Bidrose, Sandy Graham, Susie Johnstone, Grant McKenzie, Andrew Noone, Andrew Whiley, Chris Staynes, Doug Hall, Hilary Calvert, John Bezett, Jinty MacTavish, Kate Wilson, Lee Vandervis, Mayor Cull, Mike Lord, Neville Peat, Richard Thomson, David Benson-Pope, Aaron Hawkins
Cc: Chris Morris [ODT], Elizabeth Kerr [What if? Dunedin], Ian Telfer [RNZ], News [Dunedin TV, Ch39], Morning Report [RNZ], Murray Kirkness [ODT], Vaughan Elder [ODT], EditorODT [ODT]
Subject: Remorseful apology to CEO Bidrose, Sandy Graham, A&R members, Mayor Cull and Councillors

Dear CEO Bidrose, Ms Graham, Ms Johnstone, Mr McKenzie, and elected representatives,

I unreservedly acknowledge that my loudness behaviour to CEO Bidrose in the Council hallway [3/2/15], and my loudness in the non-public Audit and Risk meeting of [3/12/14] was wrong, unacceptable and in breach of the Code of Conduct. I am genuinely remorseful that I upset people with my loudness and that my initial apology was insufficient. I undertake to do my utmost to ensure that I do not repeat such behaviour.

I am also prepared to unreservedly apologise for misleading the Audit and Risk committee regarding the narrowing of the Citifleet fraud investigations, but can only do this in good faith if any dated hard evidence is available to show that the narrowed investigation revealed six months after the Citifleet manager’s death, was in fact widened, and that active investigators did not continue to misinterpret management instructions.

Recognising that such hard evidence may be difficult to locate within the 24 hours allowed for my apology, I am nevertheless prepared to make such an unreserved apology if I am given the full Citifleet Deloittes investigation report, staff report and Deloittes’ digitised DCC evidential files which until now have been refused me on the grounds of an ongoing Police investigation. Giving me this information on a strictly confidential basis as requested last November would indeed allow me to verify with hard evidence, how much the investigation had been limited, and the extent of any misleading.

I am happy to sign a confidentiality affidavit not to release or use any of the Deloittes’ Citifleet Fraud information until the Police investigation process has been completed. Only then would I consider any ratepayer value in pursuing private prosecutions that might be supported by the Deloittes information.

Yours sincerely,

Cr. Lee Vandervis

[ends]

From: Hilary Calvert
Sent: Wednesday, 29 April 2015 5:14 p.m.
To: Lee Vandervis
Cc: Sue Bidrose, Sandy Graham, Susie Johnstone, Grant McKenzie, Andrew Noone, Andrew Whiley, Chris Staynes, Doug Hall, Hilary Calvert, John Bezett, Jinty MacTavish, Kate Wilson, Lee Vandervis, Mayor Cull, Mike Lord, Neville Peat, Richard Thomson, David Benson-Pope, Aaron Hawkins, Chris Morris [ODT], Elizabeth Kerr [What if? Dunedin], Ian Telfer [RNZ], News [Dunedin TV, Ch39], Morning Report [RNZ], Murray Kirkness [ODT], Vaughan Elder [ODT], EditorODT [ODT]
Subject: RE: Remorseful apology to CEO Bidrose, Sandy Graham, A&R members, Mayor Cull and Councillors

Considering the assurance given today at Audit and Risk it should be easy to arrange hard copy evidence of the widening as requested. 
Great result all round.

Sent from my iPhone

[ends]

BUREAUCRACY STRIKES FROM CEO AND GROUP CFO DOWN

From: Grant McKenzie
Sent: ‎Wednesday‎, ‎29‎ ‎April‎ ‎2015 ‎6‎:‎10‎ ‎p.m.
To: Lee Vandervis, Sue Bidrose, Sandy Graham, Susie Johnstone, Andrew Noone, Andrew Whiley, Chris Staynes, Doug Hall, Hilary Calvert, John Bezett, Jinty MacTavish, Kate Wilson, Mayor Cull, Mike Lord, Neville Peat, Richard Thomson, David Benson-Pope, Aaron Hawkins
Cc: Chris Morris, Elizabeth Kerr, Ian Telfer, News, Morning Report, Murray Kirkness, Vaughan Elder, EditorODT

Dear Councillor Vandervis

I am in receipt of your email entitled ”remorseful apology to CEO Bidrose, Sandy Graham, A&R members, Mayor Cull and Councillors” and provide the following response as the officer delegated by the Chief Executive:

For the breaches relating to the “loudness behaviour” relating to Dr Bidrose and the Audit and Risk Committee, it is my assessment paragraph 1 of your apology meets the requirements of the Council resolution.

In relation to “misleading the Audit and Risk Committee” I assess that the apology in paragraph 2 and following do not meet the requirements of the Council resolution because:

a) there are 2 apologies, that are both contingent on being provided with further evidence.
b) there is no acknowledgement that the behaviour was wrong, unacceptable and in breach of the code of conduct.
c) there is no commitment not to repeat such behaviour.

The Council resolution requires that an “appropriate apology for all breaches” is required. While your email goes someway to meeting the requirements of the resolution, it does not adequately cover the Audit and Risk Subcommittee matter. The resolution provided a twenty four hour window for any apology for all breaches. If you wish to resubmit your email in light of my comments above, then I will reconsider your response.

I note that you have once again requested full copies of the Deloitte Report and associated documents. This request was previously considered under the provisions of LGOIMA and the withholding grounds that were applied at that time remain. Your rights to have this decision reviewed by the Office of the Ombudsman is still available.

Regards

Grant

Grant McKenzie
Group Chief Financial Officer, Financial Services
Dunedin City Council

[ends]

█ For more, enter the terms *vandervis*, *cull*, *bidrose*, *citifleet* or *deloitte* in the search box at right.

Kangaroo Jumping [galleryhip.com]Big Game hunting season opens at #DUD

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

*Images: acting-man.com – Approach (tweaked by whatifdunedin); galleryhip.com – Kangaroo Jumping

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56 Comments

Filed under Business, Citifleet, DCC, Democracy, Media, Name, New Zealand, People, Police, Politics

56 responses to “Cr Vandervis offers full (and conditional!) apology

  1. Elizabeth

    Updated post. See official response from DCC.

  2. Elizabeth

    Gagging, corruption, fraud, non-transparency and lack of accountability are so in FASHION this week at Dunedin City Council, for Councillors (plural), Residents and Ratepayers. iD that.

    Time for the strong arm of Central Government to descend on our local authority.

  3. Elizabeth

    ### dunedintv.co.nz April 29, 2015 – 5:13pm
    Lee Vandervis issues last-minute apology
    Embattled Dunedin city councillor Lee Vandervis has issued a last-minute apology over complaints levelled against him. He was asked to apologise to fellow councillors and staff, or face serious ramifications. And he’s done so, but not before questioning the legality of the process.
    Video

    ● ODT at Ch39 News tonight says watch for more developments in Thursday’s newspaper.

  4. Diane Yeldon

    It seems to me that the DCC’s ruling clique have no desire whatsoever to find any reconciliation but intend to hunt down Cr Vandervis to the bitter end, no matter what the cost to the ratepayers. The resolution itself disallowed any explanation whatsoever on Cr Vandervis’ part. That alone is contrary to natural justice. Once more, Cr Calvert shows herself to be the only one (as well as Crs Lord and Hall who voted against) behaving with any common decency and common sense in this matter.

  5. Elizabeth

    ODT: Vandervis offers conditional apology
    Dunedin city councillor Lee Vandervis has offered a ”remorseful apology” for some of his behaviour, but is demanding proof before going further. […] Mr Cull said when contacted the offer of a conditional apology did not appear to satisfy the council’s resolution, but it would be up to Dr Bidrose to decide.
    http://www.odt.co.nz/news/dunedin/340567/vandervis-offers-conditional-apology

    [ODT Online not allowing comments]

  6. Simon

    “Mr Cull is reported to have said when contacted the offer of a conditional apology did not appear to satisfy the Council’s resolution, but would be up to Dr Bidrose to decide.”
    Why is Cull passing the buck to Dr Bidrose to decide, when it was the Councillors who passed the resolution. Not Dr Bidrose?

  7. Calvin Oaten

    It seems that Grant McKenzie – deputised by CEO Bidrose – in answer to Cr Vandervis’ conditional apologies offer, has scotched the matter of making available to Cr Vandervis a full unredacted copy of the Deloitte report(s). That being the prime condition, I suspect will put the matter right back to square one. Cr Vandervis’ apologies become null and void as they should be. Cull and his gang are not acting in any good faith on this as they are plainly going to settle for nothing but Cr Vandervis’ head on a plate. Why should he do that? The game is far from over and I believe Cr Vandervis has been advised by his counsel very wisely, as at the end of the day it is all about the ‘Citifleet’ fraud being fully exposed or not. No prize for guessing what Cull and co want.

    • Elizabeth

      There is more than one Deloitte ‘report’ that was delivered up to DCC powermongers, Calvin. And across those ‘reports’ of which the councillor is aware there is sufficient information to lead to prosecutions, plural. That’s why Kyle Cameron from Deloitte is concerned that those prosecutions have not happened. It’s not just Cr Vandervis, then, who is officially skeptical. What now from Crs Calvert, Hall and Lord.

      And, what is NZ Police thinking given the events of last week and this, where reputation is increasingly on the line from Coster down.

    • Peter

      Calvin. The response to the conditional apology is clearly a monumental slip up that mirrors Cull’s debacle at the Code of Conduct show trial. Unravelling is a word that comes to mind.

  8. Calvin Oaten

    Elizabeth, this has a lot of miles in it yet. The effort to close Lee Vandervis down is running out of steam. The only resolution to it all is an opening of all information which may or may not result in prosecutions, we simply don’t know. But we can rest assured that some do know. Whether they have been investigated or interviewed, again we don’t know. It seems from this that one could be excused for thinking that the ‘inner sanctum’ know a good deal more than they want exposed and they will now be desperate. The longer they resist the worse it’ll get. You can’t just write off 150 vehicles plus other financial irregularities, expecting that a token sum from insurance fixes it. Why did the senior people simply resign if they were blameless? How convenient to be able to blame it all on one man who happens to be deceased? The recipients of the 150 vehicles must have a story to tell. The suppliers of vehicles likewise. Parts and accessories come into it as well, then there is the apparent credit card anomalies. All not resolved one bit. That’s why Lee Vandervis has been pestering for full disclosure, face it we are not talking about Cull’s reputation or the lack of enthusiasm on the part of the ODT. No, we are talking about the citizen’s treasure, $millions it seems that for the sake of pride is being forsaken. It’s simply not good enough if not slightly illegal.

  9. Lyndon Weggery

    As a very good friend of Lee I am disappointed that an “unelected” DCC official by the name of Grant McKenzie has chosen to take the unforgiving stance that he has. What is at stake here is just how far the NZ Police have widened their investigation into the Citifleet fraud which everyone knows is not over just because one person involved is deceased and other living DCC managers have fallen on their swords. Are there only three Councillors who have a growing concern about this scandal? Surely the full Deloitte Report should be made public so that genuine concerns can be allayed if the DCC has nothing to hide? Like the Stadium scandal this latest debacle as thankfully highlighted by Councillor Vandervis is not going to go away in the minds of many ratepayers. Lee has so many supporters in this City and I suspect many more than we can ever imagine.
    For those who have made submissions to the LTP and have indicated a desire to speak before the Panel, I would urge you to take the opportunity to express your displeasure to the Mayor as I intend to do. Such treatment of any Councillor (no matter how provocative they may seem) is simply not the Dunedin way and sadly the Mayor’s leadership has taken our City’s reputation for justice and fairness to an all time low.

  10. Peter

    This is not going to have a happy ending for some people……and it’s not Lee Vandervis. The Citifleet fraud, plus the stadium fraud revelations still to come, are not going to go away.
    Those, who really have nothing to personally hide, need to choose their friends carefully and to distance themselves from those who have committed fraud. Cover up is as bad as the original fraud.
    If the prospect of losing one’s job is at stake, the individual concerned needs to remember that losing a job is better than losing your reputation, or worse, going to prison. People lose their jobs every day and they pick up the pieces again. Sometimes those pieces are simpler and maybe not as financially rewarding, but give peace of mind.
    I fear tragedy could befall basically decent people who have not been strong enough to say no.

  11. Anonymous

    There is a lot of smug in that response from Grant McKenzie. Must really appreciate the smell of his own farts with a world view like that.

    Diane Yeldon is right, while they are going after the jugular, they may be of the mistaken belief readers of the Otago Daily Times are siding with them. They may even discover a few of their loyal subscribers are questioning why this council is behaving like it is, even after all the crap that has gone before. A contributor at ODT Online suggested a fine donated to a worthy cause. A more suitable response given how much tragedy is occurring beyond the self-interest of certain individuals within council. But removing Cr Vandervis or his right to vote is clearly what the Water Boy and his circle of wasted minds want. And that bodes very badly for the future of Dunedin.

    I am a Dunedin City Ratepayer and voted for Cr Lee Vandervis – if they remove or censure his right to represent me there will be consequences for all of those involved.

  12. Rob Hamlin

    There are two things that are inevitable in life, death and taxes. Tax itself has commonly been described as theft. While this is often treated as an extremist libertarian position it is worth noting that across the vast majority of history and across most of the World that is exactly what they are. Men with guns, or their legal equivalent, extract money from the population and spend it on what they like – which is usually themselves or their mates.

    What we are seeing here is not an aberration but a return to this historical taxation norm that is occurring all over the developed world. Everywhere taxes are rising and the return of said taxes to the general citizenry in the form of public good activity is falling at an increasing rate – the difference is heading into the wallets of the 1%. The brief and exceptional window of general rights and a reasonable level of comfort and equality of opportunity for the general citizenry that started to open in 1919 is now rapidly closing again. We are right to fight it, but we are not going to win.

    • Diane Yeldon

      Rob, the longer people leave it, the harder it will be to win.

    • Diane Yeldon

      Rob, do you remember the movie War Games? Where the computer learning about global thermo-nuclear war learnt that ‘the only way to win is not to play.” This is not true of struggles over resources, such as people might have on their home patch, where not playing merely guarantees you lose.

  13. Cars

    The Deloitte report was commissioned by the DCC for the DCC. Why therefore are all of the elected councillors not allowed to read the full unredacted report? What is the reason for commissioning and paying a large sum for its production if those persons duly elected are unable to read it? If the DCC employees are running the show, let’s get rid of the councillors and the mayor. At least we will know who we are dealing with.

    • Mike

      Note that the same guy who gets to decide whether Lee’s apology is valid is the same guy who’s holding back the report from the people the ratepayers have elected to keep them honest – one has to ask exactly what the DCC is trying to hide from the council?

      The other article in today’s paper was a wonderful attempt at misdirection – the same guy talks about attempts to detect fraud in the future – you can imagine a magician holding out a wonderful future in one hand to draw the audience’s attention while quietly slipping the past into his back pocket with the other.

    • Peter

      Lee Vandervis wants to know what is contained in the Deloitte reports. It has now reached the point where we all want to know.
      Yet there are people in the DCC and elsewhere who don’t want us to know. Cr Vandervis has challenged these people to the limit. They don’t like it one bit. Hence the attempt to hobble the truth seeker.
      Blind Freddy can see what is happening.

      • Mike

        Yes the Streisand effect has very much kicked in hasn’t it. Has anyone tried to LGOIMA it?

        • Peter

          LGOIMA info takes time, energy and persistence, but in the end you can get far. Even refusals on specious grounds carry weight. Patterns emerge, dots can be joined.
          All this can be facilitated by leaks. Mail box drops are safest. All such drops are welcomed by truth seekers. Also people like to talk. Checks on this can be cross-referenced to discount rumour.
          It is amazing what does get out. Sometimes truth seekers can get lucky. You can ask for information you already know and see the games being played and by whom.
          In this game the cards are not held by one side.

        • Elizabeth

          Lee Vandervis has certainly used LGOIMA to get access to the Deloitte reports. Look what happened to him.

          BTW the chief executive probably could have attended Tuesday’s council meeting. Don’t ask.

        • Diane Yeldon

          What is the full name of this report? I will have a go at getting it as official information and see what happens.

        • Mike

          I bet they use the excuse of “pending legal action”.

          Of course part of why they are so pissed off at Lee is because he went and asked the police and asked them and was told “we’re only looking into this small corner of the issue” which tells us that there is no pending legal action for the bulk of the contents – and for the rest coronial issues might bar publication but should not stop disclosure to Lee – in any case they could just black out a name.

  14. Brian Miller

    It happened again yesterday at the Mosgiel Taieri community board meeting when they were considering tightening up the discretionary board funds application form. It was suggested that this form, that has the heading “Guidelines” be changed to “Rules”. This change was fought against by some of those who have been knee deep in using the funds for themselves and their cronies. Once again those with their hands in the till have managed to keep the word “Guidelines” in place, because it allows them to keep the opportunity to abuse the system because there have been no rules set in place to protect the funds from the abusers.
    This issue may seem peanuts to you all, but you can see with the Citifleet debacle. That the blind eye was turned on events that were happening there, and the whole issue is now out of control. There needs to be an urgent inquiry as to why this board is allowed to abuse the system, by allowing them to decide how the funds application form is worded, so that there is no protection of the ratepayers funds from future abuse.

    • Elizabeth

      Oh no. Mosgiel Taieri Community Board has escaped Grant McKenzie’s fraud training. The leaky sieve.

      • Jacob

        Fraud training Elizabeth. By the look of things. They don’t need training.

        • Hype O'Thermia

          They’re training to be trainers.
          When fully trained will be available for deployment overseas in countries where corruption has fallen to historically low levels.

      • Hype O'Thermia

        The best training programs for fraud (among many disciplines) are our prisons. Within them trainees can receive one-on-one mentoring on how to achieve successful defrauding, how to identify the most rewarding targets for fraudulent activity, and, just as important, what pitfalls to avoid.

  15. Calvin Oaten

    That guy sitting on his pedestal in the upper Octagon (you know, him wearing all that seagull crap) must be quietly wondering what is going on in this Edinburgh of the south.

  16. russandbev

    The normal methodology to dissuade seekers of the truth is to introduce more and more layers of “compliance” or smoke into a simple request for information. With amazing speed what was a simple request turns into a convoluted series or layers of arguments as to why the information isn’t available. The whole mess then devolves to arguing about process and ignores the basic issue.

    This underlying issue is quite simple and everyone – including those that wish to muddy the waters – needs to refocus on that basic issue. Put simply, the appropriate DCC personnel were advised some considerable time ago of evidence of fraud or inappropriate behaviour within the DCC. They didn’t respond appropriately and after a period of time elapsed one officer was dead and the DCC and the Police have now closed the shutters on all information that was gained by either their own or Deloitte enquiries. The frustration by those that raised the original concerns is completely understandable as the DCC and the Police both refuse to disclose what they have found, or indeed whether some arrangement has been reached between the DCC and the Police not to proceed, or some other action or inaction taken by either party. A report has been made by a DCC contractor which appears to be only able to be read by a very selected few who may, or may not, have very good reasons to keep that report hidden from the view of the Councillors who are supposed to be governing the City.

    What Dunedin ratepayers were promised when Cull was elected and when Orders was appointed was transparency and honesty. Everyone will have a view on whether these promises have been fulfilled or not, but I cannot see how disenfranchising the ratepayers from having their elected representative vote on their behalf at Council meetings has anything to do with ensuring transparency and honesty.

    • Diane Yeldon

      I wonder if the secret is that, if correct prosecutions were to take place, an unmanageable proportion of the Dunedin population would be in jail. Not enough room.

  17. Peter

    There is the old saying ‘You can run, but you cannot hide.’ l think some of these people forget this. Call it arrogance. Call it desperation.
    A tipping point will be reached. The vultures will swoop once this point is reached.

  18. Elizabeth

    Received from Anonymous
    Thu, 30 Apr 12:06 p.m.

    Calvin has made reference to the City’s insurers having paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to the City by way of compensation for ‘lost/stolen’ vehicles.
    So let’s back the truck up and have a rational analysis of why the insurers paid up. Insurance companies are notoriously strict in their decision making and will demand any and all supporting information from the claimant before they agree that they are obliged to compensate. They have made such a payment, so therefore there is in existence absolute proof that the vehicles have been stolen. I believe that the Deloitte report would be central to the insurance company’s decision to pay – a report funded by the ratepayers whom Lee is elected to represent.
    Lee is absolutely entitled to be in possession of this information, but it is withheld from him. Not only is it withheld, but he faces strident accusations of unrelated matters. All of this is clearly an attempt to shift the focus from the fact that the insurer’s payment in compensation for loss is absolute proof that a crime (theft) has been committed. So why is an elected member being denied this ‘ratepayer funded’ information? Given this watertight evidence that a crime has been committed there is only one conclusion that we can come to (as to why evidence is being withheld from Lee), it is that individuals close to the ‘upper cabal’ are named in the Deloitte report as being a party to the theft – a theft; the proof of which is validated by the insurer’s payment for loss.
    If the Mayor and his fellow travellers are minded to argue that reasons for withholding the Deloitte report (unredacted) from Lee have nothing to do with the risk of exposing individual/s criminal behaviour, then where did the evidence come from that convinced the insurers that it was proven that they had an obligation to compensate? That is: given that insurance compensatory payments were made for stolen vehicles there must be evidence of who stole them and/or the names of all who ‘washed around’ this sordid behaviour and every elected member has the right to possess this information.
    If the Mayor is of the opinion that this summary of facts has no merit, and none of the above represents evidence that supported the decision by the insurers to pay, then we are persuaded to consider that the City’s administration must have made a fraudulent insurance claim. Now that’s an interesting proposition!
    The Mayor needs to be warned that while he may have the numbers to be a political dictator, the ‘great unwashed’ while they do not have ‘Civic’ power, they are circling his wagon in massive numbers and civic disobedience is a pending reaction; the defence of which that he should seriously contemplate.

  19. Elizabeth

    ”He’s apologising for his loudness. Well, it was more than loudness. That was shown,” Mr Cull said.

    ### ODT Online Thu, 30 Apr 2015
    Vandervis apology deemed insufficient
    By Chris Morris
    Dunedin city councillor Lee Vandervis’ last minute offer of a ”remorseful apology” – complete with strings attached – has been rejected as insufficient.
    The offer by Cr Vandervis was emailed late yesterday afternoon, a day after he was told to apologise for bullying, aggressive and misleading behaviour or be stripped of committee voting rights for two months.
    Read more

    Shown, was Cr Vandervis’ intelligence, cunning and strong desire not to be played. Music to the ears.

  20. Cars

    I sent a letter to the opinion page today in the ODT, which of course went unpublished. The gist of the letter was this.

    Once you enter into a process of training DCC staff on fraud detection you are in effect training those guilty parties as not yet punished due to the redactions in the Deloitte inquiry in the ways and means of detection of fraud.

    In other words you are in fect inviting the guilty to invent new ways to circumvent legal procedure as exampled in the same manner that the Germans in World War II were unable to stop escapers who were often one step ahead.

    The only potentially beneficial way to minimise theft, defalcation and fraud is to ensure all those previously guilty are weeded out through exposure and prosecution and THEN train the innocent to protect the chickens from the foxes or the gaolers from the escapers if you don’t like mixing metaphors.

    Until the entire Deloitte report is available to all those elected to run the DCC, any potential methods of implementing precautionary methods are not only useless and a waste of more ratepayers’ money, but in fact a training method designed to make detection even more difficult.

    Given the reluctance of DCC staff to ensure a more honest organisation where those who are innocent are not tarred with the same brush as the guilty it perhaps begs the question that Grant McKenzie’s action in setting up training to raise awareness of fraud (ODT today) may be just designed to ensure fewer fraudsters are caught!

  21. Elizabeth

    Staff would be taught more about what …. “red flags” to look for.

    ### ODT Online Thu, 30 Apr 2015
    DCC training to raise awareness of fraud
    By Chris Morris
    The Dunedin City Council is to give its more than 700 staff new training to protect the organisation from a repeat of the $1.51 million Citifleet fraud. Plans for the move were outlined at yesterday’s audit and risk subcommittee meeting as part of sweeping changes designed to improve the council’s fraud protection.
    Read more

    Related Post:
    17.3.15 DCC whistleblowing —what is open government ?

    ….open government is not a full unredacted Deloitte report for Citifleet.

  22. Peter

    With the DCC it increasingly looks like any ‘red flags’ raised have the simultaneous effect of raising white ones to follow.

  23. Diane Yeldon

    Comment I just made to the ODT story; Vandervis apology deemed insufficient. ODT often censors me.

    Code of Conduct now and again
    The DCC Council meeting of 18 April 2015 is full of ironies, one of the most interesting being that the councillors took well over an hour to decide whether to comply with the law in respect of the Warrington boulders, despite the fact that the DCC Code of Conduct requires all councillors to uphold the law.
    So, despite Mayor Cull’s lengthy speech on the necessity of maintaining standards and taking the Code of Conduct seriously, in practice this is obviously done only selectively.
    Here are a few more requirements of the DCC Code of Conduct which the DCC doesn’t always take seriously, as the Mayor’s behaviour at the last meeting demonstrates.
    J3.3 Relationships with the Community
    Effective Council decision-making depends on productive relationships between elected members and the community at large. Members should ensure that individual citizens are accorded respect in their dealings with the Council, have their concerns listened to, and deliberated on in accordance with the requirements of the Act.
    79 Members should act in a manner that encourages and values community involvement in local democracy.

    {Published at http://www.odt.co.nz/news/dunedin/340614/vandervis-apology-deemed-insufficient#comment-70968 -Eds}

  24. Elizabeth

    To that, Diane, Wikipedia says:

    LAW OF HOLES
    The first law of holes, or the law of holes, refers to a proverb which states that “if you find yourself in a hole, stop digging”. [ie if you find yourself in an untenable position, you should stop and change, rather than carry on exacerbating it]

    Daaave in a hole [canstockphoto.com]

    *Image via canstockphoto.com (tweaked by whatifdunedin)

    • Diane Yeldon

      I’m afraid I am being an utter bitch about this:

      email to Sandy Graham who is handling the complaint I made about the conduct of the last Council meeting and the Mayor’s behaviour towards members of the public present (including me.)

      Hi, Sandy, I have been told that you are dealing with the complaint I made. I note that Mayor Cull did not comply with the DCC Code of Conduct requirement as follows:

      J3.3 Relationships with the Community
      Effective Council decision-making depends on productive relationships between elected
      members and the community at large.
      Members should ensure that individual citizens are accorded respect in their dealings
      with the Council, have their concerns listened to, and deliberated on in accordance with
      the requirements of the Act.
      79
      Members should act in a manner that encourages and values community involvement
      in local democracy.

      Will look forward to hearing what you have to say about this. I also note that the Mayor’s tone of voice when speaking to me was extremely disrespectful, as if I was something stuck to his shoe.

      Kind regards
      Diane

    • Elizabeth

      JimmyJones punches it out at ODT Online >> Dave Cull should apologise (29.4.15)

      • Diane Yeldon

        My comment that it is not council that ‘makes the rules’ as Mayor Cull stated but Parliament and the rules are called ‘laws’ which councils must uphold and comply with – and that the Mayor himself is accountable to the law like anyone else ……..guess what? Was disallowed.

  25. Calvin Oaten

    Elizabeth, then there was that famous WW1 cartoon depicting a grizzled digger up to his waist in water in a shell blast hole saying to a mate out of sight: “If yous’ knows of a better ‘ole’ yous’ go for it.”

  26. Peter

    It is plain to see that since Monday’s Code of Conduct meeting to the latest ‘Whatever’ response by Dave Cull to Hilary Calvert’s legal opinion, we are witnessing some very erratic behaviour from Dave Cull. Irrespective of either side this is a concern.
    I am left unsure who is calling the real shots. Cull, the wider council, Bidrose or McKenzie. Who is really speaking and for whom?
    I look forward to see Dr Bidrose’s return from overseas and for her to directly set the record straight. Is she following orders from her political boss or is she still independently doing her job as CEO?

  27. photonz

    VOTE NOW on the most idiotic DCC decision of recent times – plenty of choice…….

    1/ Suspending democracy.

    2/ Not to follow up tip offs about losing 150 vehicles

    3/ Spending hundreds of thousands on curb protrusions around St Clair and St Kilda, that 95% of residents don’t want.

    4/ The Portobello Rd cycleway that’s 27 cycle lanes wide used by almost no cyclists, and the remaining road that’s too narrow for the local trucks that use it.

    5/ The endless speed bumps on VIctoria Road, that mean vehicles use 120% more fuel than travelling at a steady 50kmh (according to my cars engine computer) all aimed at cycleways to reduce emissions, when the reality is they are causing far more (my 25 trips a week along this 400m (=10km) – of road should take 1 litre of fuel, but now take over 2 – multiply that by several thousand cars a week).

    6/ Traffic lights that used to work fine (i.e. King Edward and Macandrew Rd) but now are really slow to change and often cause huge back ups even outside rush hour.

    7/ Having crazy intersections like Forbury/Allendale/Bay View, when right turning traffic travelling in opposite directions on Forbury Rd are deliberately channeled into a head on collision.

    8/ Making curb protrusions for the cycleway so far making car lanes are so tight, cars often cross the centreline into oncoming traffic, just to try to get around the corner.

    9/ Reducing lanes from two to one at give ways, so where cars could previously turn left and right at the same time, now any right turning car is likely to block all left turning traffic for considerable periods of time, even though they have no one to give way to.

    10/ Reducing straight through lanes at traffic lights, again so a single turning car will block all other traffic, often for the whole phase of lights.

    11/ Doing nothing about dogs on sports fields that have no dogs signs, so that my children often come home with dog faeces on them after playing on the sports fields, and at school.

    12/ Spending hundeds of thousands on repaving footpaths because they are on the programme – even though they don’t actually need doing.

    13/ Building stairs on the St Clair seawall that were obviously going to fail, then leaving them broken and an ugly eyesore for years and years.

    14/ Killing the Dunedin tradition of generations of getting takeaways then driving down John WIlson Ocean Drive to find your own spot with a lovely sea view.

    15/ Allowing some companies to have giant eyesore signs 3500% larger than allowed in the district plan, while turning down companies because their signs are slightly larger than the rules.

    16/ Rebuilding the speed bump /cycleway crossing on Victoria Road THREE TIMES before getting it right (which is more than the number of cycles I’ve seen using it in nearly a year, despite crossing it several times a day, including four times a day during rush hours).

    17/ The ANZAC Avenue lights debacle.

    18/ Putting a bus stop right in a position where buses continually ruin photographs of New Zealand’s most photographed building – the railway station.

    Please fell free to add more of you own – I’ve run out of time (but unfortunately not idiotic DCC decisions)

    • Elizabeth

      All deeply depressing, photonz…. Thanks for list :[

    • russandbev

      Employing J Harland
      Contracting the Carisbrook Stadium Trust to do anything
      Writing off the ORFU debt
      The entire stadium debacle
      Setting up the DCHL group with Councillors filling all the positions their mates couldn’t be bothered with
      Failure to control Delta
      Not wanting any form of accountability anywhere, anytime

      Just 10 seconds thinking….

  28. Sue Todd

    Just as well they’re not in business for themselves!!!!!!!!!

  29. Elizabeth

    What’s worse?

    A Mayor of Dunedin in Meltdown
    A Mayor of Dunedin making procedural errors
    A Mayor of Dunedin denying Democracy
    A Mayor of Dunedin insisting to ignore video evidence
    A Mayor of Dunedin making deliberate procedural errors

    The Mayor not releasing Deloitte reports in a manner that allows prosecution.

    Ammunition: Where did the bullets go.
    {That’s wherever, not whatever. -Eds}

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