Received from Christchurch Driver [CD]
Mon, 6 Feb 2017 at 8:27 p.m.
Dear readers, your correspondent was fascinated to learn of the appointment of Godfrey Brosnan as Aurora’s new saviour (Program Director for the Pole Replacement project), about a month ago, on 29 December 2016. One cannot escape the conclusion that the announcement was timed for maximum concealment. There was no shouting from the rooftops about the appointment of Mr Brosnan, but merely the witless Mr Cameron in full euphemism mode, stating that Mr Brosnan was “An experienced project manager with a background in complex capital works”. Grady, this is a waste of space, just like yourself. What precisely are the “complex capital works” that Mr Brosnan has experience of ? Are they power industry projects ? What does “experienced” mean ? The only experience that is relevant is power industry experience, and we can assume from your vague dissembling, that Mr Brosnan is a novice to the power industry.
Now Dunedin is a small town, and it is not hard to find someone who knows Mr Brosnan. The good news is that in a revolutionary new development, Delta and Aurora have employed someone with integrity to the executive tea room. (Hope you like madeira cake, Godfrey). The bad news is that Mr Brosnan is not experienced in the power industry. Mr Brosnan’s most recent role was involvement in a peripheral capacity on the $445M Christchurch Hospital Acute Services Building project. This building is right in the middle of construction, and will not be finished for at least 18 months, so there we have the first clue about Mr Brosnan : Why was he willing to leave a major project that was barely even half-way completed ? The answer is not that Mr Brosnan had a passion or the right experience to lead the pole replacement project, but merely wanted a job in Dunedin because his school-age family lives here. The position was sweetened no doubt, by the eye-watering amount of money on offer. Reputedly with incentives, the pole replacement director is up around Grady’s fantastical package of $600,000. Mr Brosnan’s lack of experience suits Delta and Aurora : he can be manipulated by being given a flood of fakery by the duplicitous remnants of the original executive team. Mr Godrey’s integrity compounds the profound problem of his lack of experience : People with integrity generally assume a similar level of integrity in their colleagues, which in the case of Delta/Aurora, is going to lead to a disastrous outcome, most likely for Mr Brosnan.
Richard Healey has recently outlined the enormity of the problem facing the pole replacement targets : It is madeira cake to margarine sandwiches that Mr Brosnan was not made aware of the full extent of the problems that are now his.
Readers, as you wash down the Tim Tams with a cup or two of Bell’s, I can hear you thinking – is this just the fevered imagination of CD at work again ? In the words of Walter Mondale, where’s the beef ?
Your correspondent offers as evidence the curious case of the short-lived previous pole replacement director, a Mr Jarrod Stewart. Mr Stewart, a lawyer by background, has achieved fame within Delta by appearing to achieve the impossible : three separate payouts by Delta in the space of a year. Let us count the ways :
1. Delta last year cancelled Mr Stewart’s two-year contract, which he was compensated for.
2. No sooner was the ink dry on that settlement then Delta realised that they did, after all, need Mr Stewart and offered him the position of Pole Replacement Program Director, with a contract package with incentives worth around $600,000.
3. Mr Stewart, not long after accepting the $3,000 per day position, then had misgivings that he might have been subject to a further flood of fakery from Mr Cameron and his cohorts. Mr Stewart then employed a colleague from the mining industry to do a risk analysis of the pole replacement programme and his liability as director of the programme. The risk analysis concluded that Mr Stewart should …, ahem … Get the hell out of there ! The “programme” (if such an ad hoc on-the-fly chaos can be called a programme), was destined to fail, likely with some serious safety consequences, and consequent liability to the head of the project, being of course Mr Stewart at that time. It is understood that Mr Stewart is seeking some form of compensation for misrepresentation that induced him to sign up.
4. Now readers, hold those cups tight : The following is not made up : After Mr Stewart made his dissatisfaction with the pole replacement project known, a Delta senior manager – an Indian gentleman called Mr Kewal Bagal, we understand – on instruction from the highest levels, no doubt – actually broke into Mr Stewart’s office to attempt to find incriminating evidence about Mr Stewart. Mr Stewart is now taking a personal grievance action seeking further damages for this latest act of extreme Delta stupidity.
We should be grateful to Mr Stewart that he went public with his concerns in December. Had Mr Stewart wanted to maximise his income and minimise his integrity, he could have emulated one Mr Derek Todd, a senior engineer in Asset Management, and a flawed accomplice of Mr Matt Ballard, the chief propagandist of Asset Management. Mr Todd was the one who told staff that “every extra dollar you spend is a dollar less for the Council”. Mr Todd was implicated in the revelations of deceptions and dishonesty perpetrated by Asset Management in October and November, and unsurprisingly, resigned late last year due to “ill–health”. However, Mr Todd has had an amazing Lazarus-like resurrection to full health over the Christmas break, and is now employed as a “consultant” to Delta at the simply unbelievable figures of between $4,000 – $6,000 per day. That is somewhere north of $1,000,000 per year. Your correspondent understands that the “arrangement” will only extend to March 31, and is for a maximum number of days. It has the look, the structure, and the smell of a hush money payment. Mr Todd likely has damaging information that Delta do not want to see the light of day. Delta also have no money to shut him up. Solution : employ him as a “consultant” in the pole replacement program and book the cost there.
It is hard to fathom how Delta and Aurora and their boards are permitted to stagger onwards by their owners. Aurora is the leper of the New Zealand lines industry. Your correspondent understands that it is not uncommon for no applications to be received for recent positions at Delta and Aurora. Mr Steve Thompson may spout about it being an exciting place to work but the industry has voted with its feet. Delta/Aurora is a place where careers are ended, not made.
One final nugget of information : We must hold our nose about Board chair Thompson’s shady past for a few months, as it is understood that he has been instructed to make life as difficult as possible for Grady Cameron, with the aim of having Grady resign prior to June. Mr Thompson is the enforcer, the Richard Loe of the boardroom. (A role he is familiar with and will relish). Welcome to the bottom of the ruck Grady…watch your eyes.
Note: Personnel profile according to Aurora Energy’s website:
General Manager Energy and Communication
Kewal (BEE) joined Delta in November 2010. He is responsible for Delta’s delivery of infrastructure services to the energy and communications sectors, including electricity and gas distribution, transmission and generation, retailer services and next generation fibre optic networks. Kewal has experience in leading and managing infrastructure services businesses in both the telecommunications and energy sectors in New Zealand, Australia, and Asia with Transpower, Powermark, Alstom, Telecom and Downer. He leads a highly skilled team of 300 people. [Source: Aurora Energy – Delta ELT]
Related Post and Comments:
19.1.17 Jarrod Stewart is EXACTLY RIGHT [what would Steve Thompson know]
█ For more, enter the terms *delta*, *aurora*, *grady*, *jarrod*, *steve thompson*, *dchl*, *epicpowerfail* or *epic fraud* in the search box at right.
Posted by Elizabeth Kerr
This post is offered in the public interest.
*Image: dishmaps.com – madeira
18 responses to “Delta #EpicPowerFail 9 —The Curious Case of Godfrey Brosnan and Jarrod Stewart”
Richard Healey · Thursday, 2 February 2017
Staying alive while a company you own works hard to kill you.
Today I went for a haircut, nothing too unusual in that, but while I was there I got into a discussion with a couple of the customers. The bloody barber started it. His son is a linesman, a thousand kilometers away from the Delta debacle, but the fallout has landed at his door anyway.
By the time Delta’s delusional asset management team slowly came to the realisation that –
1. There REALLY is a problem with the network that they have been driving into the ground for twenty five years.
2. Despite the predictions of John Campbell, the new GM Asset Management, it wasn’t going to “all blow over in a couple of days”.
3. Even a group as slow, unresponsive and glacial in their approach as the Energy Safety Service would, eventually, have to “investigate” (I acknowledge that their performance so far does not justify the use of the word) Aurora /Delta.
4. Killing or maiming another person would probably be frowned on (possibly even a strongly worded email from that paper tiger Worksafe).
– they were weeks behind every other company in New Zealand, including the one my barber’s son works for.
His company had anticipated that every other electricity company would come under scrutiny too. In preparation they bought in poles, wire, cross-arms and all the other bits you need to replace defective structures.
Unfortunately for Delta, the reality distortion field that exists over Halsey Street blinded them to the obvious – again. By the time Delta woke up and went to suppliers, the cupboard was bare.
Everyone else had bought the stock. In fact the cupboard was so bare that they were left importing steel poles from China, poles that their teams have no experience of. No problem you may think – think again. Bitter experience tells me that even the simplest change in work practice and materials can have very bad outcomes. It might be something as simple as the lifting strops that are used for concrete poles slipping on the smoother steel, or someone drilling a hole where a hole really shouldn’t be because they simply don’t understand the phenomenon of notch sensitivity.
All manageable – with a well planned, well paced introduction program. Not something you would want to combine with an over optimistic, poorly prepared, under engineered, badly led program of work on a dangerous, decayed network, fulfilled by new people with poor situational awareness and overseen by a person with zero industry knowledge. Hmmm…
Richard there follows with the comment:
….While the council desperately tries to exit “dead man walking” Grady Cameron without paying him out millions of dollars (and I mean that literally, not figuratively), Delta continues on with largely the same fatally flawed management team.
Yes the GM asset management has gone, but he has been replaced by John Campbell. John is the person whose name is on the bottom of the re-written safety alert about missing red tags. He is the man credited with changing a warning that up to 1000 red tags were missing from dangerous poles into a mealy mouthed comment that “some” tags may not have been applied. Way to show your true colours John.
And there is a new regional manager in Central Otago, Chris Elbers, the guy who used to run the – somewhat ironically named – pole replacement program for asset management. That was the program that had Delta workcrews regularly working next to fatally compromised poles outside of industry guidelines.
While it is obvious to me that Grady will no longer be with us once the company splits in two – as the board has said it will – there is still plenty of potential for him to cause real and lasting harm in the meantime. The split won’t happen until the new financial year.
Maybe the board should just exit him and rely on his sense of honour and natural justice to protect them against any claim – or maybe they should invest in flying pigs.
Not the Madeira cake! It sends one into ‘A la Recherche du Temps Perdu’, by Marcel Proust. Next thing, it’s ‘Swann’s Way’. Swann’s way.
Meanwhile, another two in Delta’s design team have quit last week.
Who can blame them? Good people working within a rotten culture, surrounded by rotten poles, and having the impossible expected of them.
And remember that holding it all together are those honest hard-working linemen.
Do understand the importance of that considerable deduction on your monthly power account – your misappropriated Lines Charges. (Read Stadium Support Charges and Aurora’s payments to DELTA – Delta’s Executive Leadership Team Account). Yes, you’re paying directly for the Grady Cameron Gravy Train. All aboard for personal enrichment, obfuscation, executive managerial incompetence, staff manipulation, dysfunctional oversight, nil accountability, cynical public spin and a decaying infrastructure network.
Unfortunately, the Aurora asset is now in such poor shape, and the Delta reputational damage so bad that it’s hard to imagine who would want to be professionally associated with it, to take this nightmare on. All the newest of nicely branded vehicles in the Delta fleet, and the glossy Annual Reports don’t disguise this mess.
‘Public perception about the Aurora network’, such a convenient phrase for Mr Cull 4 months ago, has spread well beyond Dunedin now.
Thanks for your ongoing respective insights, CD and Richard. It’s appreciated being able to know what is really happening to OUR network, and the dangers we are exposed to.
‘Public perception about the Aurora network’, was that intended to downplay reality?
Other public perceptions:
Ice is cold, fire is hot, water is wet.
Next time anyone tries to do the Weaselword Shuffle of “Public Perception” remind them, and tell them to quit dancing on the heads of OUR pins.
On Ch39 News tonight, Dave Cannan says tomorrow’s ODT has another story about the Aurora Energy/Delta pole business (saga!)….
We thank ODT for clearly acknowledging the What if? Dunedin website by name (cracking editorial policy fellas, applause!) – as the originary online SOURCE for parts of their story today.
Nevertheless, we like that the aspiring Vaughan Elder continues to check out What if? Dunedin in his spare time. And isn’t it great that Jarrod Stewart is not a man to hold back while Grady Cameron continues to malinger as CE of Aurora/Delta. Obviously, Grady & Co are still struggling to shut down the plethora of information leaks. Don’t worry Grady – leaks are state of the art. Get used to it. Or sign that resignation of yours to buffer the pain.
Wed, 8 Feb 2017
ODT: Action by Delta decried
The former director of Aurora Energy’s pole replacement programme alleges a senior executive illegally rummaged through his office. Jarrod Stewart, who quit Delta in December over concerns its $30 million pole replacement programme would be dangerously mishandled, said that during his last week, Delta energy and communication general manager Kewal Bagal illegally cleared out his office. […] He had spoken to a lawyer and planned to take out a personal grievance against Mr Bagal for his actions. Cont/
A question for Gary Johnson, the Marketing and Communications Manager for Delta, who first broke the following piece of news.
What has happened to Mr Spiro Anastasiou, the PR Consultant ‘specialising in politically sensitive issues’, who we were told in November had been contracted to assist the Delta Spinners and Weavers Club?
Did he take one look at his brief and go for an early severance package?
Or is he working more behind the scenes, advising on office ransacking procedures?
If this was a TV series – say, a dramatisation 15 years after today – would we still be watching, or would we say, the scriptwriters have gone too far, they are going for cheap laughs and stupid thrills a la when Coronation Street goes through a desperate for ratings phase?
Train smashes, conflagrations and murder by driving into the canal coming up….
Or would we do marathon binge-watching: “OMG, this train wreck is beyond belief. But I googled reports from that time and it’s all real, including conflagrations!”
Some lateral thinking here please Hype O.
Think opportunity at every turn!
There’s some seriously good money to be made out of this local drama, and priceless international exposure for the region.
Forget about scriptwriters.
We can run a new reality TV show – a hybrid doco of comedy and pathos.
Dunedin’s own Natural History Film Unit can produce it.
Remember the hugely successful series ‘The Office’?
Stand aside Ricky Gervais.
Bear witness Will Shakespeare.
This one is to be called ‘The Pole – How the Rot Set In’.
We can do it!!! It’s been going on for years!! Just roll the bloody cameras!!
It’s All Right Here!!!
And just what is the Board of Aurora/Delta doing right now to fix this mess? And just what is DCHL doing right now to fix this mess?
And just what is the DCC doing right now to fix this mess?
No doubt that the highly inflated Cameron will be unsuccessful in any applications he may make in the future, but that is hardly the point. His toxic management is doing nothing to fix the existing issues let alone plan and implement growth in the places of Otago that have the misfortune to be “provided” with a necessary infrastructure. Time for Cameron, the Boards of Aurora/Delta and DCHL to vacate their positions for people that actually do give a damn.
I like that site views are high.
As CD would say, ‘margarine sandwiches for everyone’ and not a pole more.
According to Richard, Matt Ballard has gone to Silver Fern Farms.
[great, staying local for future court action –less cost to Otago Ratepayers]
When the Grader applies for a new job – and surely he can’t hang in at Delta till he gets his gold card – prospective employers googling his name will find some interesting reading!
russandbev & Hype,
Unsuccessful!…….applications!!!!…..(in the plural)!!!!!……employers googling names!!!!!!!!?….With appropriate connections and consistent track record of delivery to the appropriate ‘stakeholders’, a senior management application can simply be a tiresome piece of retrospective paperwork that is filed after the event for compliance purposes. You can write it in red crayon on a used cardboard Big Mac tray if you like – It doesn’t matter. The greasy item might well be accompanied into the file by a couple of ‘red herring’ applications from tame minions (plus a couple of external to the network idiots who might be admirably qualified, and naively motivated, but who simply don’t get it) to give the record a bit of extra colour.
Aurora, Delta and Silver Fern Farms – Three of my all-time favourite companies. If it’s true, then it’s nice to see this high level management link-up occurring between them.
Rob Hamlin: Yeah :-(
Jimbo, for instance.
Bagal, I wonder whether he did in fact Bag All.
Reminds me of Bernie Madeoff with everyone’s money.
In tomorrow’s ODT – Phil Somerville says:
“Delta’s debacle keeps on giving, so to speak ! …It looks like less than half the poles than promised …will be replaced street by street, so there will be power cuts while that’s going on.”