Category Archives: Technology

Recycle your Soft Plastic bags #Dunedin

[stuff.co.nz]

“The objective is for 70% of New Zealanders to have access to a drop-off facility for soft plastics within 20km of their home.” –Scott Simpson

### ODT Online Fri, 23 Jun 2017
Recycling for plastic packaging arrives
By John Lewis
All those plastic bags floating around after shopping expeditions can now be recycled under a joint initiative between the retail sector, the packaging industry and the Government. The Love New Zealand Soft Plastics Recycling programme was launched in Dunedin yesterday, and will enable soft plastics and soft packaging such as shopping bags, bread bags, frozen food bags and food wrap to be recycled at the 14 New World, Countdown, FreshChoice, Pak’n Save and The Warehouse stores in Dunedin and Mosgiel. Associate Environment Minister Scott Simpson said the programme was already running in Auckland, Hamilton, Wellington and Canterbury. […] The $700,000 contribution from the Government’s waste minimisation fund was being matched by contributions from retailers and some suppliers, bringing the total project funding  to more than $1.6million. […] Cargill Enterprises would collect the recycled plastics from the shops. 
Read more

Last year I convivially swapped emails with the manager of Centre City New World enquiring about how soon the store would adopt the national soft plastics recycling programme. He kindly immediately contacted FoodStuffs to find out ….well the day has come! Happy customer!

Try this simple test to help identify recyclable plastic material…
“The test is if you can pull it and stays stringy in consistency, it’s fine. But if you can tear it cleanly it is not recyclable.” Stuff

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Soft Plastics Recycling 
The Love NZ Soft Plastics Programme is about informing New Zealanders about how to keep plastic bags and packaging out of landfill. Collect all the soft plastics which you use at home, make sure the bags are empty and dry and drop them into the Love NZ Soft Plastics Recycling bins at participating stores.

The project is supported by major brands including Asaleo Care, Ceres Organics, Coca Cola Amatil, Cottonsoft, Fonterra, Frucor, George Weston Foods, Goodman Fielder, Griffins, Hubbards, Kathmandu, Kelloggs, Kimberly-Clark, Lululemon, Mars, Mother Earth, Mondelez (Cadbury), Nestle, New Zealand Post, Pams, Pure Delish, Simplot (Birds Eye), Spicers, SunRice and Wrigleys; Amcor Flexibles, Astron, Coveris, Snell Packaging & Safety with many others committed to joining the programme. Soft plastic bags are not currently collected for recycling by councils because they can contaminate the recycling process. New Zealanders use over 1.6 billion plastic bags in the home every year. The project takes all soft plastic bags including bread bags, frozen food bags, toilet paper packaging, confectionery and biscuit wrap, chip bags, pasta and rice bags, courier envelopes, shopping bags, sanitary hygiene packaging – basically anything made of plastic which can be scrunched into a ball. Customers can bring their used soft plastics back to store and put them in the recycling bin.

█ Website: http://www.recycling.kiwi.nz/soft-plastics

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

1 Comment

Filed under Business, Democracy, Design, Dunedin, Economics, Education, Geography, Health & Safety, Innovation, Inspiration, Media, Name, New Zealand, People, Pet projects, Public interest, Resource management, Technology, Urban design

RNZ Morning Report: Damning indictment of Aurora Energy #Listen

Aurora Energy has not maintained the lines utility because for years the company passed over lines profits in the form of dividends to DCC and subvention payments to cover Stadium debt servicing. Central Otago power users faced silly-huge increases in their lines charges. Otago power users, generally, having already paid for upgrades and renewals through their lines charges, have regrettably lost their safe and secure supply of electricity, and must now pay twice. The people responsible for this critical state of affairs need to explain and face the consequences.

How does this stack up for the Commerce Commission, the industry regulator ?

### rnz.co.nz Mon 12 Jun 2017
Morning Report with Guyon Espiner and Susie Ferguson
8:47 AM Many electric lines companies have outdated equipment -ComCom Link
A report by the Commerce Commission says many electric lines companies have outdated equipment that should have been replaced years ago. Our reporter Eric Frykberg has been looking into it.
Audio | Download: Ogg MP3 (3′29″)

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Commerce Commission New Zealand
Media Release 9 June 2017

The Commerce Commission has published one-page summaries of key performance measures for each of New Zealand’s 29 electricity lines companies.
The summaries are designed to promote a better understanding of each lines company’s performance by providing high-level statistics such as profitability, capital and operating expenditure, asset condition, revenue and network reliability.
Commissioner Dr Stephen Gale said that the Commission has pulled together the data to make it easily accessible for industry, Government agencies and consumers, and to enable comparison across lines companies. The statistics are sourced from more detailed public disclosures.
“Electricity companies reach every New Zealand household and business so over time we want to make it easier for consumers to understand how their own lines company is performing year-on-year. The information in the summaries is still quite technical in nature, but we expect this kind of exposure will in itself help improve lines companies’ overall performance,” Dr Gale said.
“The summaries are a high-level snapshot of the lines companies and are not intended to represent a thoroughly detailed picture of performance. However, they suggest some differences between the performances of different lines companies, such as the health of assets including poles, lines and substation equipment. In cases of apparent poor performance, we will follow up with the companies to better understand their circumstances. We will also undertake further analysis in the future.”
The performance summaries are available on the Commission’s website.

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Performance summaries for electricity distributors
Under Part 4 of the Commerce Act these 29 electricity distributors are required to publicly disclose information to help people better understand how the sector is performing.

Click areas on the [interactive map at the ComCom website] to download the distributors’ 2016 performance summaries.

[screenshot only]

The performance summaries provide high level statistics on each lines companies’ performance, including measures such as profitability, capital and operating expenditure, asset condition, line charge revenue and network reliability.

See more details in the documents below.
← Back to Performance analysis and data for distributors

Documents
Explanatory notes for electricity distributors’ performance summaries – May 2017
(PDF, 464 KB) Published on 31 May 2017

Total electricity distribution 2016 – June 2017
(PDF, 488 KB) Published on 06 June 2017

Performance summaries for electricity distributors – May 2017
(MS Excel Spreadsheet, 2.1 MB) Published on 31 May 2017

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[screenshot, details]

Aurora Energy 2016 One Page summary

█ View Online: http://www.comcom.govt.nz/assets/Downloads/Aurora-Energy-2016-one-page-summary.pdf

█ For more, enter the terms *aurora*, delta*, *poles*, *healey* or *dchl* in the search box at right.

Disclaimer. The site owner is not responsible for the currency or accuracy of content of contributed comments; and the inclusion of the information provided does not imply endorsement by the site owner.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

18 Comments

Filed under Aurora Energy, Business, Central Otago, Commerce Commission, Construction, DCC, DCHL, Delta, Democracy, Design, Dunedin, Economics, Education, Electricity, Finance, Geography, Health & Safety, Hot air, Infrastructure, Media, Name, New Zealand, OAG, Ombudsman, People, Perversion, Pet projects, Politics, Project management, Property, Public interest, Queenstown Lakes, Resource management, SFO, Stadiums, Structural engineering, Technology, Tourism, Town planning, Travesty, Urban design

Greater South Dunedin : Public Meeting, Monday 12 June 6.30pm

Public Meeting South Dunedin: It’s your future!
Monday 12 June 6.30pm Nations Church. Please come!

It’s almost two years since the devastating 2015 floods which hit the suburbs of Greater South Dunedin, affecting more than a thousand homes, businesses, community organisations and schools.

It is timely to hold another public meeting in order to give you a voice and to provide an opportunity for some information sharing and discussion about the priorities for our community.
We hope you will attend.

Ray Macleod, Chair
The Greater South Dunedin Action Group

Background Information:

There’s been a lot of talk about the future of Greater South Dunedin.

Some of that talk has been muddled by poor quality information collected and published around the extent and causes of the flooding on our community. Eventually the Dunedin City Council acknowledged that its lack of maintenance of the mud tanks and its lack of oversight of the performance of the Portobello Pumping Station contributed 200mm to the flooding that occurred.

Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment, Jan Wright, warned earlier in 2016 that South Dunedin presented the “most troubling example” of high groundwater in the country.

The DCC and the Otago Regional Council have produced reports on the flooding and the issues facing Greater South Dunedin due to rising groundwater and the impact of climate change. Their reports are largely based on predictions and modelling assumptions.

There have been reports by GNS Science and the University of Otago’s School of Surveying of potential subsidence in South Dunedin and other parts of the city. At the time, GNS cautioned against reading too much into the subsidence data, as more work was required.

The DCC has finally announced a temporary community hub will open at Cargill Enterprises on Hillside Road mid-year.
After much public outcry, the South Dunedin Work and Income and Police station re-opened their doors.

The DCC formed a stakeholder group of organisations and government agencies, some of whom have a presence in South Dunedin, which meets every month or so.

Heavy rainfall over Easter demonstrated that the City’s civil defence preparedness and response has improved, although local people are yet to be fully informed about how they can be better prepared and understand how a civil defence emergency may affect them.

The DCC’s Second Generation Plan has held hearings into the Hazard 3 (Coastal) Overlay which covers the area bounded by Forbury Rd to the west, Victoria Road to the south, the Caversham bypass motorway to the North and Portsmouth drive to the east. This includes a provision to require new residential dwellings to be “relocatable”.

The DCC also recently announced new “minimum floor” levels for new buildings in South Dunedin of 500 mm for those not affected by the 2015 floods and 400mm above the floodwaters for those affected by the 2015 floods. This will result in some new houses having to be a metre above ground level in order to get a building consent. GIVEN THE DCC CONTRIBUTED 200MM TO THE 2015 FLOOD LEVEL THIS RAISES A QUESTION REGARDING THE NEED FOR ANY MINIMUM FLOOR LEVEL REQUIREMENT OR A CASE BY CASE EVALUATION AS THE NEED ARISES.

If you live or work in the Greater South Dunedin area, all of these proposed changes and approaches affect you. Put together they provide a confusing picture of an important community which is receiving mixed messages about its future and doesn’t yet feel it has a strong voice and a plan.

In all of the discussions about the future of Greater South Dunedin, the people who call these suburbs (of South Dunedin, St Kilda, St Clair, Forbury, Caversham, Caledonian, Portsmouth Drive, parts of Musselburgh and Tainui) home or work are not yet part of the discussions.

You may have attended a public meeting after the floods which resulted in the formation of the Greater South Dunedin Action Group. We consider you to be an important part of this group as it aims to:

• Facilitating effective communication between the community and the city and regional councils
• Advocating, representing and promoting the present and future interests of the community
• Ensuring the area is well serviced by Council in terms of social and infrastructure services as a foundation for a vibrant community
• Exploring the opportunities for the area including inner city redevelopment, renewal, and support for new job opportunities & enterprise
• Developing a sustainable plan for the future of the Greater South Dunedin area and its community

[ends]

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Greater South Dunedin Action Group

Public Meeting
6:30pm Monday 12 June 2017
Nations Church
334 King Edward Street South Dunedin

Agenda
Meeting Chair: Hon Stan Rodger

1. Welcome: Hon Stan Rodger

2. Apologies

3. Dunedin City Council & Otago Regional Council on what has been achieved over the past two years. Response to questions submitted to DCC copies are which will be circulated to the meeting. (15 Minutes)

4. Dr Simon Cox: A geoscientist’s perspective on the problem at hand.
(15 minutes)

5. Mr Geoff Thomas: Property Council of NZ. Impact on property values.
(10 minutes)

6. Questions from the floor (if wishing to ask questions please try to write these down and direct them through the Hon Stan Rodger).

7. Proposed resolutions:
a) That the meeting provide a mandate to the Greater South Dunedin Action Group to act as an advocate for the community interests.
b) That the DCC are requested to provide an initial engineering plan and response by 1 December 2017 with the intention of providing protection and support to people, homes and businesses in the Greater South Dunedin area.
c) The DCC be requested to commence the establishment of a community board to represent the interests of the Greater South Dunedin Community.

8. Any other business.

9. A wrap up and thank you from the Chair of the Greater South Dunedin Action Group. (5 minutes)

10. Final words from the Hon Stan Rodger.

█ Download: SDAG Public Meeting Agenda (DOCX, 25 KB)

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

24 Comments

Filed under Business, Climate change, Construction, DCC, Democracy, Design, District Plan, Dunedin, Economics, Education, Finance, Geography, Health & Safety, Housing, Infrastructure, New Zealand, People, Politics, Property, Proposed 2GP, Public interest, Resource management, South Dunedin, Structural engineering, Technology, Tourism, Town planning, Urban design

Cadbury Site: Continue with Manufacturing and a Themed Hotel

### ODT Online Wed, 7 Jun 2017
$20m plan to save factory
By Eileen Goodwin
A bid to save the Cadbury factory in Dunedin is being unveiled today. Jim O’Malley, a Dunedin city councillor, is trying to raise $20 million to keep the factory open on a portion of the site. Mr O’Malley is working in a personal capacity; the Dunedin City Council is not involved in the bid. Mr O’Malley’s plan is to run a public share offer aimed at the general public as well as business. Before launching any share offer, Mr O’Malley has organised a two-week pledge period to gauge interest, starting today. […] Shares in Dunedin Manufacturing Holdings (DMH) would be priced at $50 if the offer goes ahead. A website has been launched – www.ownthefactory.co.nz – to register pledges. […] The plant would make the full range of New Zealand favourites, such as Jaffas and Pineapple Lumps, under licence for Mondelez International. […] Mr O’Malley’s plan differs from that of other parties because it involves acquiring part of the site and the equipment, rather than just agreeing to produce the goods.
Read more

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### ODT Online Wed, 7 Jun 2017
Themed hotel still possible: Lund
By Chris Morris
A chocolate-themed hotel could still be built at Dunedin’s Cadbury factory site, even if its backers have to share the space, a Dunedin businessman and city councillor says. The comment came yesterday from Russell Lund, one of those pushing the hotel concept, before news broke yesterday of Cr Jim O’Malley’s bid to save the factory operation, condensed on to a smaller part of the site. […] Mr Lund said the idea of sharing the site was “interesting” and not one that would necessarily kill the hotel concept. The Cadbury factory was on a “massive” site, meaning there was potentially room for a mixture of uses, including a hotel on upper floors alongside a dairy processing plant on the ground floor, he said. But before options could be considered, more detail was needed from Mondelez, he said. […] He expected to hear from Mondelez by the end of next month, but in the meantime, he would discuss the hotel concept with a group of Chinese investors due to visit Dunedin later this month.
Read more

[click to enlarge]
280 Cumberland St, Dunedin 9016 via Google Earth

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When it comes to hotel design, Dunedin can learn from Hobart, writes businessman Russell Lund.

### ODT Online Mon, 8 May 2017
Hotel design: back to the future is where it’s at
By Russell Lund
OPINION The proposed Filleul St, Dunedin, hotel is a remnant of outmoded thinking. Nothing ever remains the same, and the winds of change are sweeping through the accommodation industry. I recently spent time in Hobart to see how it had been able to develop many of its waterfront heritage buildings into viable economic propositions, and received some valuable insights. Hobart now has a population in excess of 200,000, but it was and still is a regional city in economic decline, isolated from Australia’s major centres. Like Dunedin, it has the lowest average household income of any major Australian city, and sees a bright future in tourism based on its built heritage, natural environment and outstanding regional food and wine products. The accompanying photographs show the two hotels rated by TripAdvisor as the best and second best (of 46) hotels in Hobart. The Hotel Grand Chancellor Hobart is a rectilinear 4.5-star human filing cabinet that is described on TripAdvisor as an architectural scar on the Hobart cityscape. Its level of discernible architectural merit is of a similar standard to the proposed Filleul St hotel which is to say, none at all. Despite its brutal urban demeanor, The Hotel Grand Chancellor is a busy hotel. Its 244 rooms run at an impressive 93% occupancy, but you can hire a room there at any time for less than $A200 ($NZ215). However, the modest Henry Jones Art Hotel nearby, with 52 5-star rooms, a former jam factory, knocks the Grand Chancellor for a revenue six. It also runs at 90%. occupancy, but its average tariff is about double the Grand Chancellor’s, at $A350-$A500 per night. The Henry Jones is able to charge this premium because the property is unique, even in a city renowned for its building heritage.
Read more

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### ODT Online Wed, 17 May 2017
Cadbury expands Hobart factory
Mondelez International is investing $A4 million in Hobart’s Cadbury chocolate factory while pushing ahead with plans to close its Dunedin production line. The food giant announced today the money would buy new equipment to produce two new lines at the Claremont plant, while the southern New Zealand site is due to close in 2018.
Read more

█ For more, enter the term *cadbury* in the search box at right.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

44 Comments

Filed under Architecture, Business, COC (Otago), Construction, Democracy, Design, Dunedin, Economics, Education, Finance, Heritage, Hotel, Infrastructure, Innovation, Inspiration, Leading edge, Media, Name, New Zealand, People, Pet projects, Project management, Property, Public interest, Resource management, Site, Structural engineering, Technology, Tourism, Town planning, Urban design, What stadium

#OldHat Dunedin bus system hard to use and unaffordable

Lynley Hood is a positive advocate for her area, no doubt – but hopefully she can think more widely than Corstorphine, to the provision of fair and equitable public transport for The Many, wherever they live in Dunedin, who struggle to pay standard fares or top up the ‘dumb’ Go Card —or who have no bus service to their streets at decent intervals with timely transfer options for necessary travel destinations [the currently ‘immovable’ ORC system].

Or thank god, there’s hail apps.

[Is Otago Regional Council up with the technology about to change public transport @ New Zealand —thereby cancelling any profit from the ill-thought diesel-breathing bus hub planned for Great King St in Central Dunedin.]

Black car service [uberinternal.com]

When a new flexible bus ticketing system is introduced early next year in Dunedin and the Queenstown area, consideration would be given to introducing a lower $5 top-up for Go Cards for online payments. –ORC

### ODT Online Tue, 6 Jun 2017
Bus discounts asked of ORC
By John Gibb
Kew resident Lynley Hood is urging the Otago Regional Council to introduce a community services card bus discount to help “transport disadvantaged” people in Dunedin. “Public transport is important for all sorts of reasons, certainly for inclusiveness and giving everybody a chance,” Dr Hood said. If you’re going to proceed with education and get a job, you’ve got to have transport. It’s got to be attractive to everybody, so it works for the people who need it.” She often saw bus users checking their small change to see if they could afford to use the bus, and clearly not everyone could. She has been suggesting this extension of the bus discount system, and other improvements in the Corstorphine bus service, for several years, and made a detailed submission to the council in 2014. More Corstorphine residents would be encouraged to switch to Go Cards by providing the suggested discount for community services card holders, and cutting the minimum Go Card top-up payment from $10 to $5, she said.
Read more

Radiohead Published on Jun 2, 2017
Radiohead – I Promise
I Promise is one of 3 previously unreleased tracks from the album OK Computer OKNOTOK 1997 – 2017.

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“Transportation companies compete for customers, and ultimately it is the consumer who makes the choice.” –Chicago’s Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection

“Were the old deemed to have a constitutional right to preclude the entry of the new into the markets of the old, economic progress might grind to a halt,” Judge Richard Posner wrote in the 7th Circuit decision. “Instead of taxis we might have horse and buggies; instead of the telephone, the telegraph; instead of computers, slide rules.”

### usatoday.com 4:47 p.m. ET 5 Jun 2017 | Updated
Chicago cabbies say industry is teetering toward collapse
By Aamer Madhani
CHICAGO — Operators of the nation’s second-biggest taxi fleet are now accelerating toward their long-rumoured extinction, edging towards becoming virtual dinosaurs in the era of ride-sharing monsters Uber and Lyft. Cabbies have long grumbled that the sky is falling as they lose ground to ride-sharing companies. Now, cabbies in Chicago are pointing to new data that suggests the decline could be speeding up. About 42% of Chicago’s taxi fleet was not operating in the month of March, and cabbies have seen their revenue slide for their long-beleaguered industry by nearly 40% over the last three years as riders are increasingly ditching cabs for ride-hailing apps Uber, Lyft and Via, according to a study released Monday by the Chicago cab drivers union. More than 2,900 of Chicago’s nearly 7,000 licensed taxis were inactive in March 2017 — meaning they had not picked up a fare in a month, according to the Cab Drivers United/AFSCME Local 2500 report. The average monthly income per active medallion — the permit that gives cabbies the exclusive right to pick up passengers who hail them on the street — has dipped from $5,276 in January 2014 to $3,206 this year. The number of riders in Chicago hailing cabs has also plummeted during that same period from 2.3 million monthly riders to about 1.1 million. Declining ridership for Chicago’s taxi industry comes as foreclosures are piling up for taxi medallion owners who aren’t generating enough fares to keep up with their loan payments and meet their expenses.
….Chicago cabbies aren’t alone in feeling the pinch. In New York, ridership in the city’s iconic yellow cabs has fallen about 30% over the last three years. Last year, San Francisco’s Yellow Cab — the city’s largest taxi company — filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Los Angeles taxi ridership fell 43%, and revenue was down 24%, between 2013 and 2016.
Read more

Medallion Report (FINAL)

[watch video] Fox 32 : Chicago taxi drivers: Industry is teetering toward collapse
Posted: Jun 05 2017 09:50PM CDT | Updated

New York, the new normal….

Motherboard Published on May 27, 2016
Is Uber Killing the Yellow Taxi in New York City?
As Uber’s stranglehold over the taxi industry increases, some New York yellow cab dispatchers have found themselves in an unprecedented predicament: sitting on millions of dollars worth of medallion yellow cabs, but not enough drivers to drive them.

█ Wikipedia: Taxicab regulation

Related Post and Cimments
8.12.16 Our loss-making public bus system, as for the colours *spew
20.11.16 Dunedin Buses – Route planners don’t consider effects on local business
11.8.16 Tesla Motors to open new location every four days #electrictravel
21.3.16 Uber travel

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

7 Comments

Filed under Business, Democracy, Design, Dunedin, Economics, Education, Finance, Geography, Hot air, Infrastructure, Innovation, Inspiration, Leading edge, Media, Name, New Zealand, People, Politics, Project management, Public interest, Technology, Tourism, Transportation, Urban design

#Aurora —“What was that?!” Huh? What?! [a council mutters, suddenly]

Really, we haven’t heard much lately from the DCHL chairman about the dwindling source of funds to the city council…. counting down to June 30 perhaps, with lawn mowing to look forward to in Spring. But what of an associate commissioner’s five-year term at the Commerce Commission.
A few things are not being said in ‘above Board’ fashion.

Around a billion dollars to retrieve Aurora, is it worth it and how?
By the beg, borrow and ‘TAX’ ratepayers method ?? When Otago power consumers have already paid their line charges to cover network upgrades and renewals that never happened. Look at this winding garden path, so much leafy cover and fat plums for the picking, but —WHERE did the money go and WHICH ENTITIES AND WHICH INDIVIDUALS are responsible for wrongful application of lines monies to other unrelated activities.
Thankfully, in this situation, a raft of New Zealand legislation (laws) and statutory regulation applies.

DCC’s budget resilience, helped by accelerated debt repayments and reduced debt-servicing costs, meant the council had “some room to move”….“we are already in a constrained situation and we’ve got some buffer in the system”.

Friday, 2 June 2017
DCHL dividends to council in doubt
By Chris Morris
The Dunedin City Council expects dividends from its companies to “flatline” as Aurora grapples with the $720million cost of rebuilding its electricity network. But Dunedin Mayor Dave Cull says improvements in the health of the rest of the council’s books means it is up for the financial challenge. His comments came after council chief executive Dr Sue Bidrose, speaking at this week’s council meeting, said the council faced fresh uncertainty over future dividends. […] The money helped ease the pressure for rates rises […] The change reflected the need to get DCHL’s books in order — after years of borrowing to pay dividends — and reinvest in Aurora’s network […] speaking this week, Dr Bidrose said the projected dividends were at risk because of Aurora’s investment plan. “We will be reviewing that, in light of the high level of asset maintenance required by Aurora. It seems it would be a fair assumption it will be at least longer before that dividend payment recommences,” Dr Bidrose said.
Read more

█ For more, enter the terms *aurora*, *delta*, *crombie*, *thompson*, *grady*, *luggate*, *jacks point*, *dchl*, *auditor-general*, *noble* or *yaldhurst* in the search box at right.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

[pinterest] – shoes on line bricked by whatifdunedin

16 Comments

Filed under Aurora Energy, Business, Central Otago, Construction, DCC, DCHL, DCTL, Delta, Democracy, Design, Dunedin, Economics, Education, Electricity, Finance, Geography, Health & Safety, Hot air, Infrastructure, LTP/AP, Media, Name, New Zealand, OAG, Ombudsman, People, Pet projects, Politics, Project management, Property, Public interest, Queenstown Lakes, Resource management, SFO, Sport, Stadiums, Technology, Town planning, Travesty, Urban design

Profligate behaviour : MYTH paraded as fact…… just like Aurora Energy’s propaganda campaign

Council infrastructure and networks committee chairwoman Cr Kate Wilson said last night the project would go ahead “regardless”. There was funding for three years, she said, and the fourth year’s funding would be part of next year’s long-term plan, and the one after that. The project was needed for safety reasons to prevent vehicles driving into the harbour and climate change making the road undriveable. (ODT) *Emphasis by whatifdunedin

Yeah right.

### ODT Online Fri, 26 May 2017
Botched cycleway estimate short by $13m
By David Loughrey
A bungled Dunedin City Council cost estimate to complete safety improvements and a cycle/walkway on Otago Peninsula has left the project more than $13 million short. The council announced yesterday an estimate for the project on Portobello Rd and Harington Point Rd that includes a cycle/walkway from Taiaroa Head to the city had risen from $20 million to $49 million. The earlier estimate, drawn up  in 2011, did not include parts of the cycleway to be built, land that had to be bought and a contingency fund to cover unforeseen expenses. […] Despite the cost rise, the council will start construction this year, with a shared cycle/walkway design.
Read more

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Powerlines at sunset [garp.com]

Meanwhile WE will be paying for our Otago power network TWICE, at a crippling cost to business and residential power consumers well into the future —thanks to Dunedin City Council’s unsatisfactory governance of the companies Aurora Energy / Delta Utility Services and Dunedin City Holdings and, above all, the Council’s unfettered use of public funds to realise the dream of the Tartan Mafia and Professional Rugby to build the now frequently empty and under-utilised Forsyth Barr Stadium. (three concerts by Ed Sheeran in highly doubtful acoustic conditions inside ‘the roof’ does not a Christmas make).

All this because the Council conveniently fails to ensure it covers the infrastructural basics (in this instance: the safe, secure and continuous supply of electricity) – affordably – for the static if bearly stable City of Dunedin, and the sparcely populated Otago region in the mode of fast pumping growth. (There are simply too few permanent ratepayers to uphold ‘big bloated dreams’ and money siphoning on the rates take).

The Council did not ensure that Aurora Energy / Delta Utility Services were sufficiently well structured to Avoid profligate spending, making subvention payments to the stadium companies, or borrowing to pay dividends to the Council. (Probably the least of it).

There have been YEARS of dangerous neglect, embellishing the lack of repair and upgrade to the Community of Otago’s electricity network.

The Council is not well enough controlled (corporate and financial oversight) in order to Avoid its own profligate spending —so to protect, support and upgrade Otago’s power network as the solid basis for regional economic development and SAFE living —with CERTAINTY and SECURITY OF SUPPLY.

Instead, The People will now be plunged into further debt by the circus wheel of local body politicians and the morally thin and rather malevolent boards of directors (masters of spin) controlling the companies.

It’s time the People of Dunedin and Otago took control of their power infrastructure. Resolving, if they will, to adopt a different ownership and delivery model – one option is to form a democratically elected Community Power Trust to own and oversee the network; this is a sound regional model that is proven to work in other jurisdictions, with all due care.

WE have to Safeguard our future.
Not leave decision-making to unvetted members of the Tartan Mafia.
Especially not those in thrall to the likes of Gordon Stewart and his ilk (a vague reference to Delta’s speculative dealings at Yaldhurst, Christchurch – Delta is presently in a discovery process via an action brought to the Christchurch High Court by Caveators claiming Constructive Fraud).

DO NOT sell the ‘fragments remaining’ of the Otago Power Network (as bleated by some in power who can’t/won’t maintain a local body balance sheet – like you trust them, already?!) – to overseas corporates who will hike power prices disastrously to satisfy their shareholders.

Proceed carefully, OTAGO.

ASK QUESTIONS. RESEARCH. DO YOUR SUMS.
DON’T BE TOLD WHAT TO DO. ACT RESPONSIBLY FOR THE FUTURE PROSPERITY OF YOUR KITH AND KIN.
DO NOT PLACE FAITH IN OLD SPIN MAESTERS AND THEIR DEPUTIES.

We’ve seen them all before and have the new $1+ BILLION ‘invoice’ from Aurora Energy to prove it. Yes, we thought we had already paid over that amount in electricity and lines dues.

The suited ones bringing the clamour are looking after themselves – not US, not OUR COMMUNITY.

This is now a ransom.

The UGLY sister companies remain joined at the hip : Delta is Aurora Energy’s “preferred contractor”. And Steve is new, so don’t blame him! ….Really?

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[propaganda – Aurora Energy]

After facing unrelenting pressure to up its game, Aurora Energy says it has stepped up to the challenge.

Sat, 27 May 2017
Dawn of a new Aurora era
By Vaughan Elder
Aurora chairman Steve Thompson said it had been under the “spotlight and the heat lamp” since accusations broke last October that it was endangering the public and workers by leaving its network, and in particular power poles, to deteriorate. That pressure turned ugly at times and workers had been verbally abused, including while out doing their supermarket shopping. Mr Thompson blamed the abuse on what he described as unfair criticism and media coverage. But Mr Thompson said in the face of adversity, Aurora and its sister company Delta had achieved a “hell of a lot” in a short space of time. The two companies were well on their way to splitting up in a divorce which Mr Thompson said would cost money in the short-term but reap huge benefits in the long-term. Aurora was also mid-way through an ambitious accelerated pole replacement programme and this week announced a $720million plan to upgrade its ageing network.
….Mr Thompson said its actions should help renew the public’s faith in both companies, but emphasised he believed that faith had been unfairly shaken by what he described as over-the-top criticism in the past seven months. He said safety concerns about the 2910 red-tagged poles across Dunedin, Central Otago and Queenstown Lakes had been overblown. At the same time, Delta and Aurora’s efforts to confront the problem, both before and after the story broke in October, had been under-reported, he said.
….Despite his anger at the way Aurora had been treated by critics and in the Otago Daily Times, he was under no illusion the network was in top shape, saying it was the second oldest network in New Zealand and acknowledged major work was needed to improve it in the next 10 years. But he would not be drawn on whether the situation had come about as a result of decades of underinvestment, which has been one of the main criticisms levelled at Aurora since October. He said he was not in a position to comment given he only started midway through last year.
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CRITICAL ABHORRENCE FOR TOP CHAPS IN THE AURORA / DELTA / DCHL ‘EXECUTIVE’ (PAST AND PRESENT) WILL CONTINUE UNABATED IN THE PUBLIC SPHERE UNTIL THEY AND THEIR FRIENDS ARE OUSTED AND MADE ANSWERABLE TO HIGHER AUTHORITIES.

Otago people must busy themselves.
Time for formal inquiries. Time to REMODEL.

Related Post and Coments:
24.5.17 SCANDAL : Aurora Energy Ltd set to burden Otago ratepayers and residents with massive rates increases

█ For more, enter the terms *aurora*, delta*, *epic fraud*, *poles*, *healey* or *dchl* in the search box at right.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

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