Tag Archives: Deception

Rainy Day reading —The Spinoff : Ministry of Transport fraud case

The ever-deepening storm centred on the Joanne Harrison fraud case just became a hurricane. Yesterday’s State Services Commission investigation report is likely to trigger a new chain of events that could extend well beyond embattled Auditor General Martin Matthews, writes Peter Newport

### thespinoff.co.nz July 21, 2017
The Ministry of Transport fraud case: Why the rot goes deeper than Joanne Harrison
By Peter Newport | Contributing writer
The State Services Commission investigation, published yesterday, makes one thing very clear: Joanne Harrison influenced the exit of four fellow Ministry of Transport employees who tried to tell their bosses that she was a fraudster. She managed to hire friends and steal over $700,000 from the ministry despite numerous staff attempting to call attention to her actions. This all happened while she was reporting directly to then-chief executive Martin Matthews, who is now our auditor general – albeit on temporary leave. The Commission has now apologised and is offering compensation to those former staff members. Its report also highlights many other issues at the Ministry, arguing that the 17-year-old legislation that covers whistleblowers needs to be changed and improved.

A second investigation, into whether Martin Matthews is a suitable person to continue as auditor general, is due from Sir Maarten Wevers in the coming days. Matthews is currently constructing his response to the unpublished, but complete, Wevers investigation. He has been given until the end of this week to complete it.

The Harrison case has some similar dynamics to the Todd Barclay drama. It’s become less about the initial problem than how it was handled. Who told the truth and who tried to obscure or even bury the truth. The difference with the Harrison situation is that she is now in jail and the truth is coming out – fast.

The Spinoff has been looking at exactly who did what, and when. That job has been made easier by a new, recent MOT whistle-blower who has produced and provided to us a detailed timeline noting all the evidence, which we publish here, utilising material released by the Ministry of Transport and available to view here. The same whistle-blower has shared a bizarre insight into Martin Matthews’ statements during his time at the Ministry of Transport.

But first, a quick tour of the jigsaw puzzle of documents that reveal a picture of Martin Matthews being given not clues, or hints, but what appear to be multiple solid facts that highlighted Joanne Harrison as a Grade A con artist and thief.
Read more

Founded in 2014, The Spinoff is New Zealand’s fastest growing media startup, amassing a monthly New Zealand audience of over 500,000 in less than three years.
We’ve assembled a team of agenda-setting journalists and critics, working across text, audio and video to create a true 21st century media brand. In just two years, The Spinoff has been nominated for 24 Canon awards, winning six. Our growth has been driven by a creative editorial style and innovative business model, emphasising long-term relationships with like-minded brands and a close connection with a young, educated and urban audience. Duncan Greive won both NZ Marketing Magazine‘s Editor of the Year as well as the People’s Choice title for Editor and Media Visionary in their media issue, July 2017. The Spinoff also claimed the title for Digital Media Brand of the Year as well as the People’s Choice title for the same award.


Comment received from russandbev
2017/07/21 at 10:52 am

The recent revelations about what happened to the whistleblowers in the Ministry of Transport have, I’d suggest, application in Dunedin. Think of the parallels. In the MoT case a manipulative person with a barely-hidden track record of fraud and vindictiveness as well as a well developed sense of entitlement goes about systematically defrauding a government department of close on 3/4 million dollars. Not through some incredibly complex fraud, but one of simply creating business that didn’t exist and creating invoices from them for services that were never provided. Not exactly something that would take a lot to investigate.

Whistleblowers blow the alarm whistles to their managers and nothing happens and the further up the chain the questions were asked, the more dismissive the denials became. Meantime the fraudster moves against the whistleblowers. The Head of the Ministry moves on to even more wondrous things as Auditor General (is that ironic or is that ironic?) and the Minister dismisses all suggestions of wrong-doing. Even the Speaker of the House who employs the Auditor General doesn’t want to get involved.

Now found that the whistleblowers were entirely vindicated by their concerns and they get private and public apologies and a confidential settlement to, in part, recompense them for their treatment by both a fraudster and by management and governance failures. The Protected Disclosures Act [2000] is supposed to protect whistleblowers in BOTH public and private sectors.

Now, I don’t think anyone is suggesting fraud in the case of Aurora/Delta and that should be made plain. However look at the track record of these companies. A fearful record of stupid property speculation costing many many millions which is still going on thanks to Yaldhurst. A willingness to go along with borrowing to supply dividends to the DCHL and the DCC. Decades of ignoring maintenance on the Aurora network closely linked to the governance requirements to minimise costs, maximise profits and supply dividends to build vanity projects by the owners and now the spendup of northwards of 3/4 billion dollars on urgent maintenance bought about these years of neglect.

And then think of the years and layers of denials that these things happened over. When Richard Healey found he could no longer keep working in the company because of all that was being hidden, he gets vilified by EVERYONE that should have listened. EVERYONE is in denial including his past Managers who continued to receive their grossly inflated salaries and those in governance – many of whom refused to even sit down with him and discuss his concerns.

Am I the only one to see the parallels in how a Ministry or a City company deals with whistleblowers? I wonder if we will ever see similar end results in the case of Richard Healey?

{Link added. -Eds}

Reply from Elizabeth
2017/07/21 at 1:02 pm

Not involving Aurora:

Charges of Constructive Fraud have been brought, by joinder, against Delta Utility Services Ltd in the Christchurch High Court by the caveators (original property owners of the Noble Subdivision) at Yaldhurst. The case proceeds.


[decisionmaker.co.nz] formatted by whatifdunedin

Transparency International New Zealand

Related Posts and Comments:
19.7.17 Southern Police : Nothing changed since Tom Lewis wrote Coverups & Copouts
18.7.17 Delta | Infinity | CCC staff collude to defeat Yaldhurst residents (again)
23.5.17 Topical debates on Corruption in New Zealand
22.2.17 Some Councils/CCOs get cleanup from FRAUD and CORRUPTION #NotAll
9.12.16 Auckland corruption charges proved —ring any bells? #South
28.1.16 New Zealand local government T-shirt #haze #corruption
20.9.15 Corruption serious threat to New Zealand #CAANZ
14.9.15 Screening tonight: Paradigm Episode 2! Local Government Corruption in NZ #Sky #YouTube
23.7.15 Publicise: laudafinem.org
13.5.14 Stuff: Colin Espiner usefully defines Corruption

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

1 Comment

Filed under Aurora Energy, Business, Commerce Commission, Construction, Corruption, Crime, Delta, Democracy, Dunedin, Economics, Education, Finance, Hot air, Housing, Infrastructure, Media, Name, New Zealand, OAG, Ombudsman, People, Perversion, Police, Politics, Project management, Property, Public interest, SFO, Transportation, Travesty, What stadium

Topical debates on Corruption in New Zealand

At Twitter:

Other media items:
22.5.17 Can the Auditor-General be trusted to combat corruption?
21.2.17 NZH: Ex Ministry of Transport manager jailed for $726k fraud
26.8.16 Former Ministry of Transport fraudster denied bail


Read Bryce Edwards’ full opinion piece linked below, and the associated reference links.

It’s Worth Your While Dunedin
Because you know instances of this bigger story, and you know them well.

The following is an abridgement.

This website has bolded some words provided by Mr Edwards and the commentators he cites. Words that bloggers increasingly have a ‘steam problem’ to include in everyday use of the English language.

So much for district heating schemes, eh.

### NZ Herald 2:48 PM Tue May 23, 2017
Political Roundup: The unaccountability of elites
By Bryce Edwards
OPINION —How much accountability is there in New Zealand politics and public life? Not enough, it seems, going on recent controversies. Mistakes by those in authority can lead to disasters and misfortunes of various magnitudes. Yet a number of recent examples – ranging from the Pike River tragedy through to the Havelock North water contamination crisis – suggest that there is often a worrying lack of consequences or accountability for the authorities involved.
Following on from yesterday’s Political Roundup column about managers failing to prevent serious fraud in a government department (Can the Auditor-General be trusted to combat corruption?); an obvious question is whether New Zealand has a culture in which there’s a lack of accountability for elites who make serious mistakes.
This need for this question is further underlined by Peter Newport’s strongly argued opinion piece, Is fraudster Joanne Harrison’s old boss really fit to lead NZ’s top public watchdog? In this must-read piece published yesterday, Newport details all of the whistle-blowing attempts to alert Ministry of Transport managers to the crimes being committed in the government department, and how those whistle-blowers then lost their jobs, seemingly as a result. Reading Newport’s account, it seems that much of the fraud was entirely preventable. He asks: “Where was human resources? The Public Service Association? The police? The SFO? The auditor general? The chief executive? This all happened in a modern New Zealand government ministry. In the full light of day.”
He concludes that “the chief executive, and his successor, have consistently refused to properly investigate either what she got away with or the further systemic failings behind the scenes… It’s disgusting. Where does the buck stop and who gets the whistle-blowers their jobs back?”
Part of New Zealand’s democratic deficit relates to a lack of a culture of accountability in public life and governance. According to Karl du Fresne, “Accountability, the long-established principle that someone should be seen to take responsibility for serious mistakes, is frequently talked about but rarely practiced” – see his column, Accountability the price of keeping the system honest. He makes some important points about the apparent decline in standards of accountability in political and public life in New Zealand, pointing out that the end result, is “public confidence in ‘the system’ continues to be steadily eroded.” This is a major democratic problem, says du Fresne: “If no one ends up accepting personal responsibility and incurring a penalty, there’s little incentive to make sure it doesn’t happen again. […] Part of the problem is that “genuine political commentary and critical analysis in New Zealand has been eroded almost to the point of non-existence over the past few decades”. This is the view of Bob Gregory of the Victoria University of Wellington, who links the decline of accountability to the decline of public debate and information…..
So, does all of this lack of accountability mean that New Zealand is possibly more vulnerable to corruption than people assume? This is discussed by former parliamentary staffer Grant McLachlan in his opinion piece, NZ should raise the bar on corruption. McLachlan suggests that New Zealand isn’t well protected from corruption: “Our processes to deal with corruption are flawed. […] When a judge in our highest court doesn’t declare a conflict of interest, the Attorney-General shouldn’t offer the judge a golden handshake to save the taxpayer the cost of an inquiry. When a dodgy mine explodes killing 29, out-of-court payments should not influence the dropping of a prosecution. The Protected Disclosures Act was meant to protect good faith whistle-blowers when reporting ‘serious wrongdoing’. Poor internal processes, however, have resulted in witch-hunts and whitewashes.”
Finally, does the culture of misinformation and opaque politics play a part in limited accountability? Graham Adams thinks so, and says that there’s good reason for being appalled by the deception that comes out of government these days. He says “Kept in the dark and fed endless bullshit, it’s difficult for even engaged citizens to make sense of much in New Zealand’s public and political life” – see: Information underload: We’re all mushrooms now.
Read more

█ Bryce Edwards, until recently a lecturer in Politics at the University of Otago, researches and critiques New Zealand politics, public policy, political parties, elections, and political communication. His PhD, completed in 2003, was on ‘Political Parties in New Zealand: A Study of Ideological and Organisational Transformation’. He is currently working on a book entitled ‘Who Runs New Zealand? An Anatomy of Power’. He is also on the board of directors for Transparency International New Zealand.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.



Filed under Business, Corruption, Democracy, Education, Finance, Hot air, Media, Name, New Zealand, OAG, Ombudsman, People, Perversion, Politics, Public interest, SFO, Travesty

Santa Cull’s idea of standing orders 14.12.15 #xmasface

Santa Dave's xmas present to Cr Vandervis 14.12.15 Council meetingMr Cull to Cr Vandervis: “You, sir, are a liar. Now leave.” [screenshot]

Texts received from Lee Vandervis
Tue, 15 Dec 2015 at 7:48 a.m.

█ Message: Feel free to publicly contrast what I said to ODT reporter Chris Morris with what he said I said on today’s front page.

Lee, just checking – you planning on take big any action over the mayors comments today? Chris @ ODT

Not planning any action over Mayoral comments today because action over Mayor Cull previously defaming me as shonky’ finally got an unreserved apology from him but cost a lot of time and ratepayers money as did the farcical Code of Conduct sideshow. Shame that after all the evidence that I have provided especially what has been confirmed regarding my 2011 Citifleet allegations, that our new Procurement Policy still has not resulted in an independent Procurement manager position to oversee all individual managers’ contracting behaviour . Unfortunately my email programme died last Thursday and is still inoperative. Cheers Lee

Otago Daily Times Published on Dec 14, 2015
Councillor Lee Vandervis asked to leave a DCC meeting

Exchange erupts on discussion of DCC’s new procurement policy and ‘historical’ kickbacks.

### ODT Online Tue, 15 Dec 2015
Cull, Vandervis cross swords at council meeting (+ video)
By Chris Morris
A furious bust-up saw Dunedin Mayor Dave Cull call Cr Lee Vandervis a liar and order him to leave yesterday’s Dunedin City Council meeting. The extraordinary scene saw both men on their feet, their voices raised as they roared over the top of each other, before Cr Vandervis packed up in silence and left with a parting shot.
Read more

Report – Council – 14/12/2015 (PDF, 143.8 KB)
Procurement Policy (Proposed), December 2015

Related Posts and Comments:
14.12.15 Epere arrested
14.12.15 ORC, DCC – must be the season, minus goodwill, plus fear! and generous pay!

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr (elf)


Filed under Business, Citifleet, Construction, CST, Cycle network, DCC, DCHL, DCTL, Delta, Democracy, District Plan, Dunedin, DVL, DVML, Economics, Enterprise Dunedin, Hot air, Infrastructure, Media, Name, New Zealand, Ngai Tahu, NZRU, NZTA, OAG, OCA, Offshore drilling, Ombudsman, ORFU, People, Police, Politics, Pools, Project management, Property, Proposed 2GP, Resource management, SFO, Site, Sport, Stadiums, Tourism, Town planning, Transportation, Urban design

ORC, DCC – must be the season, minus goodwill, plus fear! and generous pay!

O me miserum, O Christmas Tree, WHYYYYY (Santa will look after us, won’t he)

xmas - charlie_brown_christmas [westword.com] 1

The survey showed staff were particularly unhappy about the council’s executive team of five directors and Mr Bodeker.

### ODT Online Mon, 14 Dec 2015
Unhappy at ORC, staff say
By Vaughan Elder
Otago Regional Council’s chief executive has denied there is a “culture of fear” in the organisation after top management were singled out for criticism in a staff survey. Peter Bodeker, who was appointed chief executive in 2012, made the comments after the “2015 Employee Survey”, which was answered by 123 staff (95%), was leaked to the Otago Daily Times.
Read more

Proposal in response to failed attempts at super councils in the North Island.

### ODT Online Fri, 11 Dec 2015
Councils may share services
By David Loughrey
A proposal to amalgamate some services of the six Otago councils is not a move to a super council, mayors say. […] Under the proposed system, local representation would stay as it is, but areas from payroll to IT, legal services, water, wastewater and roading services could be shared.

Steady stream of resignations and redundancies taking its toll.

### ODT Online Thu, 3 Dec 2015
‘Culture of fear’ at DCC
By Chris Morris
Morale within the Dunedin City Council is taking a hammering as criticism and upheaval fuel a “culture of fear”, staff say. The concerns come from past and present staff, who have told the Otago Daily Times about the impact of constant restructuring, stretched budgets and redundancies.
Read more

Related Post and Comments:
3.12.15 DCC factory crew issues, ELT, CEO….

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

*Image: westword.com – Charlie Brown Christmas, re-coloured by whatifdunedin


Filed under Business, Citifleet, Cycle network, DCC, Democracy, District Plan, Economics, Geography, Infrastructure, LGNZ, Media, Name, New Zealand, NZTA, OAG, Ombudsman, ORC, People, Police, Politics, Project management, Property, Proposed 2GP, Transportation, Urban design, What stadium

DCC factory crew issues, ELT, CEO….

sue bidrose [whatifdunedin]Following Tony Avery’s departure, a “Ruthless” ‘direct, no-nonsense approach to changeover issues’. Sue Bidrose ‘appeared to lack leadership experience, which she said was “possibly” true’.

### ODT Online Thu, 3 Dec 2015
‘Culture of fear’ at DCC
By Chris Morris
Morale within the Dunedin City Council is taking a hammering as criticism and upheaval fuel a “culture of fear”, staff say. The concerns come from past and present staff, who have told the Otago Daily Times about the impact of constant restructuring, stretched budgets and redundancies.
Read more

So. Staff are at the mercy of the D’urbavilles. There’s a new CEO waiting in the wings if anybody wants to sign out.

Related Posts and Comments:
30.11.15 City council “justifiably proud of its fiscal discipline” —Cull…
19.11.15 DCC Proposed 2GP ridiculousness: formatting + plan content
● 16.11.15 DCC operating deficit $1M worse than budget
9.11.15 Citifleet investigation: Final police report 29.10.15
● 6.11.15 DCC non compos mentis
15.10.15 DCC Citifleet: Redactions redactions
● 18.9.15 DCC suddenly wakes up! *cough —after fleet car pointers…
8.9.15 DCC Citifleet: Council steered off SFO investigation
● 22.8.15 DCC cycleway$ now tied to more ‘urban de$ign’ $pend, after reha$h…
10.8.15 DCC AMAZE —oh, more fraud
4.7.15 DCC Citifleet, [a] Deloitte report leaked
25.6.15 DCC Citifleet COVERUP #screwy
9.6.15 City promotion: moral fibre
7.5.15 DCC staff numbers, trending down
● 24.4.15 DCC re Dr Bidrose’s time as most senior Citifleet Manager
● 17.3.15 DCC whistleblowing —what is open government ?
15.2.15 DCC reality check —‘CEO Bidrose confirms no Vandervis complaint…’
11.2.15 Dunedin Cycleways: Pet project staff, ‘entitlement’? #irony
● 27.10.15 DCC: South Dunedin flood | higher learning for chief executive
29.12.14 DCC gets QLDC talent…. the weft and warp deviously weaves
● 19.12.14 DCC: Limited Citifleet investigation about insurance
● 18.12.14 DCC: Deloitte report released on Citifleet
● 22.11.14 ODT puffery for stadium rousing ?
● 19.11.14 Forsyth Barr Stadium Review
● 3.9.14 Stuff: Dunedin council CEO won’t resign
28.8.19 DCC: Tony Avery resigns
26.8.14 DCC: Extraordinarily stupid appointment ~!!!
31.7.14 DCC: Services and development #staffappointment
● 1.7.14 DCC: Far-reaching fraud investigation Citifleet
3.6.14 DCC unit under investigation
2.5.14 DCC $tar-ship enterprise
28.4.14 DCC loses City Property manager in restructuring
24.1.14 Stadium: It came to pass . . .
6.1.14 DCC: New Year revelation on staff bonuses
● 28.12.13 Sue Bidrose, DCC chief executive
● 18.11.13 DCC: New chief executive

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

*Image: Sue Bidrose via Dunedin Television, tweaked by whatifdunedin


Filed under Stadiums

DCC: Limited Citifleet investigation about insurance

Received from Anonymous
Fri, 19 Dec 2014 at 5:54 p.m.

If the Police can refuse to investigate a formal complaint regarding the actions of the ORFU and a large pokie trust involving millions of dollars by applying the Crown Solicitors investigation guidelines which include the Likelihood of a prosecution and obtaining a conviction, it is now difficult to comprehend how the Police could agree to investigating the Citifleet fraud when the main suspect is dead and there is zero chance of a conviction and with all wider enquiries ruled out.  This is all about the DCC doing just enough to satisfy its insurer and the Dunedin Police falling into line – contrived and callous!!!   

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Business, DCC, Economics, New Zealand, People, Politics, Project management, Property

Stadium: DVML, mothballing, and ‘those TVs’ #LGOIMA

Received from Lee Vandervis
Tue, 24 Jun 6:20 p.m.

I am disappointed in the complete indifference of the local press regarding info I have sent them on the scandalous $1.3 million of new flatscreen TVs DVML bought when they already had 94 TVs and were already grossly unable to meet budgets. –Vandervis

—— Forwarded Message
From: Lee Vandervis
Date: Mon, 23 Jun 2014 12:23:54 +1200
To: Chris Morris [ODT], Debbie Porteous [ODT]
Cc: Nick Smith [ODT; Allied Press Ltd]
Conversation: stadium
Subject: Re: stadium

Hi Chris and Debbie,

My understanding is that mothballing the stadium is not being seriously considered, but that it should be to at least give us a sunk-costs base-line to recognise how much keeping the doors open is costing us.
The one-off cost of buying and paying the interest on the stadium is damaging enough with out the continuous massively subsidised ridiculous running costs.

It is a shame that DVML have been allowed to run as an out-of-control Council Trading Organisation for far too long, and that DCC failure to get DVML to operate responsibly as required by their Statement of Intent has encouraged profligate spending, such as buying $1.3 million of new flat screen TVs with fancy computer controls, when they already had 94 new flat screen TVs. [see attached DVML LGOIMA responses] Spending $1.2 million on unauthorized temporary seating, and buying an unauthorized specifically Council-denied growlight system [to keep the turf growing] are two other examples. Despite this the Mayor and other Councillors seem to be happy for years now to keep throwing millions at DVL/DVML.
I have often said that before we seriously consider closing the stadium doors we should strip DVL/DVML of their staff, directors and overheads, appoint a DCC in-house manager to run the stadium along Edgar Centre lines using volunteers including Rotary as was done with Carisbrook, fit a low-maintenance artificial turf to allow everyday use, and see how cheaply the stadium could really be run. Only then would we be in a position to decide whether keeping it open was possible long term.

I have sent original info re DVML’s profligate spending on newer TVs and their disposal of ‘old’ flat screens in separate emails.


—— End of Forwarded Message


Email 1

—— Forwarded Message
From: Lee Vandervis
Date: Mon, 23 Jun 2014 12:12:59 +1200
To: Chris Morris [ODT], Debbie Porteous [ODT]
Cc: Nick Smith [Allied Press Ltd]
Conversation: LGOIMA response and new questions
Subject: FW: LGOIMA response and new questions

From: Kim Barnes [DVML]
Date: Wed, 4 Jun 2014 00:45:59 +0000
To: Lee Vandervis
Cc: Sandy Graham [DCC], Terry Davies [DVML], Sue Bidrose [DCC]
Subject: RE: LGOIMA response and new questions

Dear Councillor Vandervis

Please find attached the response to your request in relation to your LGOIMA request dated 9 May 2014. Attached also is a record of the payments made by staff and Directors for the purchases of the second hand televisions.

Kind regards

Kim Barnes
Marketing & Communications Manager [DVML]

Record of Payment (PDF 836 KB)
ClrVandervis030614 (PDF, 129 KB)

From: Lee Vandervis
Sent: Friday, 9 May 2014 2:47 p.m.
To: Kim Barnes [DVML]
Cc: Sandy Graham [DCC]; Terry Davies [DVML]; Sue Bidrose [DCC]
Subject: Re: LGOIMA response and new questions

Thank you Kim for Mr Davies responses to my questions.

Unfortunately some of my questions have not been answered.
Question 2 asks whether DVML realised at the time they bought the new Stadium TV software package that the existing 94 TVs were incompatible.
Can you please respond – yes or no – whether DVML realised they were buying a software package that was incompatible with the stadium existing 94 TVs?

Question 5 asks who was responsible for keeping the records referred to in “Unfortunately no record has been found of these actions or conversations”.
My ‘who’ question has not been answered – was it a management requirement lapse, or was it simply a staff member filing error, or some other subcontractor’s recording lapse?

Question 6 asks who was responsible for the damage causing seven TVs to be discarded? Does the “where no blame can be attributed” response mean that nobody was held responsible for the destruction of these seven TVs? Was any insurance claim made for the damaged TVs?

Question 7 requests copies of original paperwork confirming payments for stadium TVs supplied to DVML staff and directors. Thank you for supply copies of invoices, but it is proof of payment original paperwork that I have asked for. Can you please forward copies of this ‘confirming payment was made’ paperwork?

Your response also raises some additional questions which I wish to pose now as an additional LGOIMA request for information:
TV sale invoices variously describe TVs as “new” “second-hand” or just as “TV”.

Question A – are the “new” TVs so described actually new, and if so why are these new TVs being sold so cheaply? Are the sold ‘new’ TVs from the original 94, or from the subsequent 165 TVs? Are the second-hand TVs from the original 94 or subsequent 165 TVs or both? Of the TVs sold to staff/directors that are neither described as new or second-hand, which were new and which were second-hand?

Question B – why do the TV sale invoices vaguely refer to a generic TV type and not specify the actual TV unit by way of model number or serial number as is required in “a description of the goods” on a GST invoice?

Question C – What is the total number of TVs now in the stadium, and how many are from the original 94 TVs and how many are from the more recent purchase of 165 TVs?

Thank you for the information that you have provided so far as it has helped to clarify some aspects of the $1.3 million cost of the second full stadium TV system excluding the original stadium 94 TVs system.

Kind regards,
Cr. Lee Vandervis

—— End of Forwarded Message


Email 2

—— Forwarded Message
From: Lee Vandervis
Date: Mon, 23 Jun 2014 12:12:07 +1200
To: Debbie Porteous [ODT], Chris Morris [ODT]
Conversation: LGOIMA response
Subject: FW: LGOIMA response

From: Kim Barnes [DVML]
Date: Tue, 29 Apr 2014 03:02:38 +0000
To: Lee Vandervis
Cc: Sandy Graham [DCC], Terry Davies [DVML], Sue Bidrose [DCC]
Subject: RE: LGOIMA response

Dear Councillor Vandervis

Please find attached the response in relation to your LGOIMA request dated 1 April 2014 along with copies of invoices as requested.

Kind regards

Kim Barnes
Marketing & Communications Manager [DVML]

Staff purchase invoices (PDF, 615 KB)
ClrVandervis290414 (PDF, 101 KB)

From: Lee Vandervis
Sent: Tuesday, 1 April 2014 10:17 p.m.
To: Kim Barnes [DVML]
Cc: Sandy Graham [DCC]; Terry Davies [DVML]; Sue Bidrose [DCC]
Subject: Re: LGOIMA response

Dear Kim,

Thank you for finally providing me with a response. 8 weeks for this response is unacceptable however and the excuse given that “the request is for a large quantity of official information or necessitates a search through a large quantity of information” is not credible.

The answers you have provided raise further questions as follow, to which I expect answers within a normal LGOIMA timeframe:

1 – Who decided to buy the first 94 stadium TVs and on what advice?
2 – Did DVML realise at the time they bought the new stadium TV software package that these 94 TVs were incompatible?
3 – What “increased revenue” has resulted from purchasing the newer 165 TVs and stadium TV software package?
4 – What has been the total cost of the stadium TV software package, the 165 TVs and associated installation costs? Please itemize.
5 – Who at the stadium was responsible for keeping the records referred to in “Unfortunately no record has been found of these actions or conversations”?
6 – 7 of the 94 TVs have been “Discarded due to being damaged”. Under what circumstances have so many TVs been damaged and who has been held responsible?
7 – Please forward copies of original paperwork confirming payments for stadium TVs by staff members, and payments by DVML Chair Sir John Hansen and DVML Director Peter Stubbs.

Kind regards,
Cr. Lee Vandervis

On 1/04/14 5:48 PM, “Kim Barnes” wrote:
Dear Councillor Vandervis

Please find attached the response in relation to your LGOIMA request dated 5 February 2014 along with a copy of the release being forwarded to the ODT.

Kind regards

Kim Barnes
Marketing & Communications Manager [DVML]

—— End of Forwarded Message
{See also correspondence via posts made on 3 April 2014. -Eds}

Related Posts and Comments:
18.6.14 Crowe Horwath Report (May 2014) – Review of DVML Expenses
14.6.14 NZRU ‘hustles’ towns and cities to build stadiums
12.6.14 Fairfax Media [not ODT] initiative on Local Bodies
9.6.14 DVML: Crowe Horwath audit report (Hedderwick)
3.6.14 DCC unit under investigation
2.6.14 Stadium costs ballpark at $21.337 million pa, Butler & Oaten
█ 3.4.14 DVML: Lost in transaction II (flatscreen TVs)
█ 3.4.14 DVML: Lost in transaction (flatscreen TVs)

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

[Punctuation in the string of correspondence lightly edited and highlighting added; all email addresses removed. -Eds]


Filed under Business, Carisbrook, DCC, Democracy, DVL, DVML, Economics, Media, Name, New Zealand, ORFU, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Site, Sport, Stadiums, Tourism, What stadium

DVML foists invoices on DCC

Darren Burden, DVML [odt.co.nz]Confirmed.
Dunedin Venues Management Ltd, headed by chief executive Darren Burden, has been spending tens of thousands of dollars (if not more) and presenting the invoices to DCC in the hope of the council paying DVML’s bills.
Looks like Mr Burden has been trying the old Carisbrook Stadium Charitable Trust (CST) tricks again.
However, this time the council has refused to pay – and rightly so.


Comment at ODT Online:

Expensive advertising
Submitted by Stevesone57 on Tue, 20/08/2013 – 1:38pm.
I assume most [of] you have heard the advertisements promoting DVML’s venues, which include the Porters lounge at the Railway Station. They would be hard to miss as they are on Radio Sport and the ZB network day and night. Those of you who have advertised on the radio would know just how expensive this form of advertising can be. In my case I paid out some $7000 for a limited campaign.
I have no issue with the Radio Nework but one wonders what all this is costing. This is ratepayer money that is being spent so I would like to know the following:
– What is the radio campaign costing?
– What sort of return on investment are DVML getting from this advertising?
– How much revenue is generated from events held at these venues after advertising and staff costs?
I have a feeling that the blanket advertising will be making a huge hole in any projected profits. When you are advertising at the same rate as the big boys like McDonalds, you had better be holding one hell of a lot of events to cover the outlay.

DVML webpage

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

*Images: (top) odt.co.nz – Darren Burden. (bottom) DVML webpage.


Filed under Business, DCC, DVML, Name, New Zealand, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Site, Sport, Stadiums, What stadium

DScene reflects on DCC’s unholy mess

### D Scene 21 Mar 2012
Butler lifts lid on ‘deception’ (page 2)
By Wilma McCorkindale
Stadium opponent Bev Butler has handed confidential project papers to council commissioned auditors in her bid for a major inquiry into Dunedin’s stadium project. Butler has passed previously withheld information to a PricewaterhouseCoopers forensic auditing team reviewing variances in stadium completion costs identified by the Dunedin City Council (DCC) earlier this month.
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Fury over bail-out of ORFU (page 3)
By Mike Houlahan
The Otago Rugby Football Union ‘‘desperately’’ needed to be put in to liquidation so it could be properly audited, Cr Lee Vandervis says. Vandervis was one of five Dunedin City councillors who voted against approving a bail-out of the cash-strapped ORFU in an extraordinary council meeting last Wednesday. […] The DCC’S decision came after a marathon night meeting and sparked immediate outcry. Council offices were flooded with angry calls and emails, and D Scene understands councillors who voted in favour have received abusive messages.
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We’re rugby-mad but not in a good way (page 7)
By Mike Houlahan – Editor
As the Otago Rugby Football Union faced liquidation, a lot of rhetoric was heard about a ‘‘proud rugby province’’ and the depth of feeling Otago had for the game. Otago, people said, could not be left in the lurch. Otago rugby administrators got caught up in the spirit. ORFU president Wayne Graham – a man who had looked aghast on February 27 when revealing the union’s plight – seemed stunned last Wednesday when interviewed on Campbell Live at 7pm. He thought the rescue package Dunedin City Council was weighing up at that moment was so good that they would sign the deal in half an hour, and seemed perplexed they were still thinking about it.
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Opinion (page 8)
The truth, the whole truth . . .
By Bev Butler
It is expected that every large project undertaken by a council will require extensive consultation with all ratepayers but the crucial element missing from consultation in this case [the stadium] was the requirement to adhere to the principles of good faith – openness and transparency – during the consultative process. It was that failure by the DCC to truly listen and act to placate the genuine concerns held by so many that draws the inevitable conclusion that the DCC totally failed to act in accordance with the Local Government Act 2002.
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Register to read D Scene online at

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Architecture, Business, Construction, CST, DCC, DCHL, DVL, DVML, Economics, ORFU, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Site, Sport, Stadiums, STS, Town planning, Urban design

Demand a full independent forensic audit of ORFU

That is the BEST message you can all put out there, right now.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under DCC, DVML, Economics, ORFU, People, Sport

High-performance training pool at stadium?

### ODT Online Mon, 12 Apr 2010
Call for new pools for city
By Chris Morris
The Dunedin City Council should seek new ways to cash in on swimmers at Moana Pool, as well as building a pool at Mosgiel and a high-performance training pool at the Forsyth Barr Stadium, a consultants’ report has suggested.
Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Architecture, Construction, Design, Economics, Geography, Politics, Project management, Site, Sport, Stadiums, Urban design

Deception, deconfusion, understatement

…and the logo for Icarus

### ODT Online Mon, 6 Jul 2009
Opinion: Your say
Stadium deceptions
By Calvin Oaten
The stadium saga moves inexorably forward, and in doing so continues to reveal an ever growing list of deceptions. Why this should be it is difficult to know. In fact, why the DCC has gotten so deeply implicated is both a mystery, and by extension, an enormous worry to a good many citizens.
Read more


On 23 June, ODT claimed the stadium was to cost ratepayers $261 million. Link

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

1 Comment

Filed under Architecture, CST, Economics, Hot air, Politics, Project management, Site, Sport, Stadiums