Tag Archives: Degraded electricity network

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.
Read more

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

At Facebook:

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“Overall, the planning period will be characterised by the delivery of the largest work programme in Aurora Energy’s history.” –Steve Thompson

Read: The Otago power network is THAT DEGRADED – caused by various rugby supporting and clip-ticket gentlemen, whose names we all know so well. Described by civil words (not cuss words) that start with F and C.

The “laundry” was well and truly harsh, leaving the network in threadbare tatters…. while private pockets were filled. That’s One Billion Dollars worth of power asset the Otago ratepayers have had to pay for TWICE. Talk about ‘power’ and corruption, Bryce Edwards (?) – Dunedin in the last 30 years was built on it, solidly at source.

The “gents” might like to explain where all the money went, and how the hell they think they can make us pay for their near limitless mismanagement and fully reckless endangerment (to workers, citizens and the regional economy) over three decades …..without shoving them in deep at the NZ Court system —for processing.

█ Today an Aurora/Delta executive had the audacity (after spinning out their LGOIMA response to the 20th working day, following my request made 26 April) to want to charge me for official information at the vindictive “maximum charge” (their words) of $190.00. Shove that, boys. Other council owned companies have provided the information free of charge and very promptly and courteously.

Tuck it back in your pants Aurora/Delta, or be sliced.

At Facebook:

● Aurora will spend $347 million on asset renewal, including a total of 14,000 poles…..

### ODT Online Wed, 24 May 2017
Aurora plans $720m upgrade of network
By Vaughan Elder
Aurora Energy has unveiled a $720 million plan to upgrade its ageing electricity network over the next decade. The plan is a more than $300 million increase on the 10-year plan the Dunedin City Council owned company released last year. […] In a press release this afternoon, Aurora Energy said the plan would have an extensive impact on the region’s economy through job creation and spill-over benefits to other businesses. […] Other major projects included a new substation at Carisbrook, which would replace the 60-year-old Neville St substation by 2019 and a new Wanaka substation on Riverbank Rd, Wanaka. […] Aurora Energy chairman Steve Thompson said an additional $81 million would be spent on growth and security of supply projects to support the region. […] The remaining expenditure was tagged to maintenance and operating expenditure ($192 million), and capital expenditure primarily related to new consumer connections and safety and reliability ($101 million).
Read more

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The vertiginous mountain of HEALTH AND SAFETY DANGERS due to Aurora mismanagement and neglect of the power asset across Otago.

And the WorkSafe option could be “…..an infringement notice”, possibly not PROSECUTION.

Hmm, have the good old boys been dealing in the way they usually deal ??? Is WorkSafe a soft touch. To date it certainly hasn’t been Acute. Or at all worried about the danger to electrical workers or the general public. What a damnably prolonged and sordid farce this is.

### ODT Online Wed, 24 May 2017
No decision to prosecute Aurora
By Vaughan Elder
Worksafe is yet to decide whether it will prosecute Aurora Energy over the state of its power poles. WorkSafe has been looking into Aurora and its sister company Delta since October over accusations dangerous power poles across Dunedin, Central Otago and Queenstown Lakes were putting the public at risk. The government entity gave fresh details about its audit of the two companies in response to an Official Information Act request from the Otago Daily Times. WorkSafe high hazards and energy safety general manager Wayne Vernon said it had completed an “initial” audit of a sample of the network’s assets and provided a report to Aurora. […] “WorkSafe has not to date made a decision to prosecute or not to prosecute Aurora over health and safety issues associated with the state of its poles.” Mr Vernon emphasised prosecution was one of many options available to it, which also included issuing instructions to remove or minimise the potential for danger and issuing an infringement notice.
Read more

█ For more, enter the terms *delta*, *aurora*, *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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***Pssst #Delta CEO Grady replaced

An INTERNAL appointment has been made for the position of Chief Executive Officer at Delta Utility Services Ltd.

Which likely means few external executives with relevant experience wanted to apply for lead position in the ‘degraded’ council-owned company —but then, not many executives were left internally. What does that say…….

Related Post and Comments:
5.3.17 Seeking the New Grady #Delta

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

10 Comments

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Councillor don’t tell us, we know Dunedin industry and manufacturing is Tops

But Rachel Elder did need to inform Mr Mayor, since it’s he who opines that [singularly ???] “weightless” manufacturing will one day make Dunedin great.
A while back Mr Mayor lauded expansion at Speight’s, Emerson’s and Greggs ….but recently, dreadfully, when interviewed by John Campbell on RNZ Checkpoint, Mr Mayor had trouble remembering these and other multimillion-dollar manufacturing investments in the good people, raw products and knowhow of Dunedin City. As well, he slipped past the convenient fact that the deputy mayor is a director of Scott Technology Ltd, and his old flower Mr McLauchlan, advisor and confidant, is the company’s board chairman.

Notwithstanding, Ms Elder thought it necessary to set herself a free writing project, an op-ed to ‘tell’ Mr Mayor, as well as advertise her paid work skills. Yes, yes, we’re all for free speech and pumping political mileage; however, we are the converted and connected, we know just how great Dunedin manufacturing is and can be —if not for DCC.

It must be said, though, that Mr Mayor’s speech at the Cadbury protest in the Octagon last Saturday was a large complimentary step up from the fatal Checkpoint phone interview.

“Messaging that it is too expensive to export from Dunedin and that we are too far away from markets and that manufacturing is best not done here does not support the many families and individuals who work in this sector.”
–Rachel (take that Dave Cull) Elder

### ODT Online Wed, 15 Mar 2017
We have skilled workers and can make it all here
By Rachel Elder
OPINION As an employment consultant and someone who advocates for a wide range of jobs in Dunedin, I am keen for Dunedin to be advertised nationwide as a place that is great for manufacturing and production as this will supply jobs to our skilled workers. The fact is Cadbury is owned by a multinational that has caused its demise. Manufacturing can be done here well and efficiently.
Read more

Comment published at ODT Online:

ej kerr Wed, 15/03/2017 – 7:59pm #
As a city councillor Ms Elder should be overtly aware that the Dunedin City Council-owned power distribution company Aurora Energy Ltd does not and cannot offer a safe and secure electricity supply network for businesses, manufacturers and other large power users (this aside from the now obvious inability to offer safe supply to residential users). The mayor and councillors are not listening and not communicating clearly on the state of Aurora’s burnt asset. Thankfully, the Otago Daily Times has filled that void with strong news reporting. At a cost of one billion dollars to repair and upgrade the existing lines and facilities – not counting the cost of new development work required in Central Otago and Lakes District to meet growth and increasing infrastructural demand – there will shortly be a very heavy impost landing on all local businesses via rates increases. Such an unpopular debating topic at the head-in-the-sand Dunedin City Council.

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Truly fine examples of the sort of thing your grandmother and mother will tell you about Dunedin that Mr Mayor can’t:
. . . .

McMeeking Manufacturing, 123 Maclaggan St

Jaytee Baking Cups have been a household name since the 1930s, when the company was founded by a printing engineer James Thomas Williamson, hence the name Jaytee. Since acquiring the company in 1979, McMeeking Manufacturing has been the largest supplier of Baking Cups in New Zealand with exports to Australia and the Pacific Islands. Due to the dramatic increase in bakeries, cafes etc, the range of products – all manufactured in the Dunedin factory – has grown to fulfil customers requirements and follow the latest trends. Read more at https://www.jaytee.co.nz/

. . . .

### ODT Online Wed, 15 Mar 2017
Machine tool smart, versatile
By Simon Hartley
Farra Engineering’s latest $1.3 million machining kit not only has the capacity to work 24/7, but can text its progress to operators day and night. The DMG Mori “multi-pallet (work bench) horizontal machining centre”, supplied by a German-Japanese merged company, has been running for about a fortnight, at Farra Engineering, Dunedin, chief executive John Whitaker said. The DMG Mori could work on castings weighing just a few grams, on pieces weighing up to three tonnes, and castings up to 1.4cu m in size. “Being so productive, we’re going to the marketplace to fill the spare capacity,” Mr Whitaker said.
Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

*Image: jaytee.co.nz – jaytee baking cups

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Seeking the New Grady #Delta

(try to ignore that sick feeling)

https://www.seek.co.nz/job/32939468

delta-ceo-seek-co-nz-job-32939468

Advt also at Otago Daily Times, Saturday, 4 Feb 2017
(Employment, page 51)

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

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D’oh [Mayor Cull can’t name all the successful manufacturers at #Dunedin]

Rather, Daaave promotes the SHONKY programmed spend on non-essential CBD tart-ups. Not reprioritising council budgets then, Daaave….. to solve the Superduper-Mystery of council-owned Aurora/Delta LOST OR MISPLACED FUNDS, WHERE DID THEY GO ? WHERE WERE THEY SPENT ? Hundreds of millions of dollars lost from Otago ratepayers and electricity users, Daaave…..
You are going to make them pay again.

ODT 25.2.17 (page 34) tweaked

odt-25-2-17-letter-to-the-editor-crick-p34-tr[click to enlarge]

Otago Manufacturers need a Safe and Secure supply of Electricity.
The Mayor of Dunedin is making sure this won’t happen.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

24 Comments

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No news : Appointment of Group CFO

dcc-private-briefing

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Consternation of Various Sorts

We note the Dunedin City Council’s very poor financial position generally, in face of the ‘explosive’ DCC-owned Aurora/Delta collapse of the Otago power network – notable for continuing poor governance and management, with contingent lack of transparency and accountability – affecting ratepayers and residents in three distinct council areas (DCC, CODC, QLDC); the city council’s snail-like attendance to infrastructure maintenance and upgrades including implementation of three waters strategy; the city council’s ongoing out-of-control stadium fiasco; and ALL The Council Debt / debt servicing costs etc etc – for the very low, ever passive and aging ratepayer base.
FANTASTIC TIMES.

How interesting then that DCC has – as yet – failed to appoint a new Group Chief Financial Officer following the resignation of Grant McKenzie last year (see announcement 11 June 2016 via ODT).

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Fri, 12 Aug 2016
ODT: Departure reshuffle
The departure of the Dunedin City Council’s group chief financial officer, Grant McKenzie, has triggered a minor reshuffle within the organisation. The rejig includes a temporary structure while Mr McKenzie’s replacement is recruited, but the council has also taken the opportunity to realign job titles and responsibilities for two of the council’s senior managers. […] Council financial controller Gavin Logie has also been named acting chief financial officer until Mr McKenzie’s replacement is named.

Sat, 11 Jun 2016
ODT: Sir Julian stands down, McKenzie appointed CEO
Sir Julian Smith, chairman and managing director of Allied Press, publisher of the Otago Daily Times, is stepping down from the day-to-day running of the company after nearly 40 years. Sir Julian (72), who will remain as chairman, told staff yesterday he has appointed Dunedin City Council group chief financial officer Grant McKenzie as the new Allied Press chief executive officer.

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Dunedin City Council – Media Release
DCC Appoints Treasury Manager
This item was published on 10 Sep 2014
Richard Davey has been appointed to the new position of Dunedin City Council Treasury Manager. Mr Davey, who is originally from Dunedin, has had more than 21 years of banking experience in New Zealand and Australia. His experience centres on dealing with corporate treasuries and solving their risk management and funding issues. As Treasury Manager, Mr Davey will oversee Dunedin City Treasury Ltd – a DCC-owned company provides funding and financial services to other companies in the Dunedin City Holdings Ltd group. Mr Davey will report to Group Chief Financial Officer Grant McKenzie. Read more

Dunedin City Council – Media Release
Group Chief Financial Officer Appointed
This item was published on 14 Oct 2013
The University of Otago’s Director of Financial Services, Grant McKenzie, has been appointed as the Dunedin City Council’s Group Chief Financial Officer (GCFO). Announcing the appointment of Mr McKenzie to this newly-created role, DCC Chief Executive Paul Orders says, “Grant will bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the role and will be instrumental in ensuring the effective and efficient management of DCC group finances.” […] The new position of Group Chief Financial Officer replaces the DCC’s Chief Financial Officer (currently a vacant post), with the role expanded to include the provision of financial advice and support to the Board of Dunedin City Holdings Limited (DCHL). The role will also create more cohesive financial management between the DCC and Dunedin City Holdings Limited. Twenty eight applications were received for the position, from New Zealand and overseas.
Read more

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It seems DCC has slumped and trailed until 27 February (20 working days) to respond formally to my request for official information – with no phone call received (see postscript).

Tomorrow Monday is D-Day. No notice of extension has been received.

HOW HARD IS IT REALLY TO ANSWER BASIC QUESTIONS—
20 working days ? Get real DCC.

OFFICIAL INFORMATION REQUEST

From: [DCC Governance Support]
Sent: Friday, 3 February 2017 11:31 a.m.
To: Elizabeth Kerr
Subject: Acknowledgement of LGOIMA request

03-Feb-2017

Dear Ms Kerr,

Official information request for: APPOINTMENT OF GROUP CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER

Reference Number: 289707

I am writing to acknowledge receipt of your official information request dated 27-January-2017 for information regarding the APPOINTMENT OF GROUP CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER as follows:

1. When will the DCC appoint a Group Chief Financial Officer (GCFO) to replace Grant McKenzie ? 2. For what reason(s) has this appointment been delayed ? 3. Have applicants for the position been short-listed ? 4. Is there anything thing else DCC wants to say about the appointment process ?

We received your request on 27-January-2017. We will endeavour to respond to your request as soon as possible and in any event no later than 27-February-2017, being 20 working days after the day your request was received. If we are unable to respond to your request by then, we will notify you of an extension of that timeframe.

Your request is being handled by [Governance Support]. If you have any queries, please feel free to contact [Governance Support] on 03 477 4000. If any additional factors come to light which are relevant to your request, please do not hesitate to contact us so that these can be taken into account.

Yours sincerely

[Governance Support]

P.S. I have also sent your questions to our chief executive Sue Bidrose, as she may wish to provide an answer to you directly by phone or email.

Governance Support Officer
Dunedin City Council

Related Post and Comments:
10.6.16 g’bye & ’ello

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

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