Tag Archives: Evidence

Apartment hotel proposal has FATAL Flaws : ODT offers Flimsy Poll

Updated post.
Tue, 7 Aug 2017 at 2:58 p.m.

We (Dunedin) are confronted by a poorly detailed, plonk-down apartment building proposal that we suspect is fronted by an agent for Asian developers –it would not be unusual for such a proposal to be offered on the strength of tainted money looking for safe haven in the South Pacific.

Our gullible country.
The gullible shiny pants Grow Dunedin partnership.
Our ever so gullible city council under the leadership of cull-cat Cull.

A massively over-height apartment building with a frilly hard-to-read podium base is proposed —a building that may never see a five star hotel as the anchor tenant (never believe unquantified/unqualified pitches from used car salesmen, if all they offer is a Price plucked from the air).

Not so long ago large tracts of New Zealand land were bought and sold for glass beads and muskets.

A lot can happen between resource consent being granted and a deathly, failing, improperly costed build.

Is Dunedin City Council about to find out.

Beware the gift horse.
It turned out Dunedin disliked the hocks of the last one (41 Wharf St), ridden by a little cardigan-wearer. The local suits were paid to make the waterfront tower seem generous, rousing and necessary. Ha-haaa.

At ALL times, the Dunedin City Council MUST stay acutely awake despite its needful dependence on independent commissioners and independent professional advisors – the latter advisors, along with some council staff, appear to have greatly missed the Fact that the minimal concept plans presented for 143-193 Moray Place DO NOT provide a workable building; or a building compliant with district plan objectives, policies, rules, and anticipated environmental results ….or prevailing traffic standards.

Oh dear. ‘So much’ [$$$] for the independent advice. Yes, expensive use of expert and staff time to massage the applicant dream – to no convincing or winning effect.

Further, Dunedin City Council MUST be prepared to APPEAL the outcome of the decision-making process should it wish to AVOID being left with another expensive DEBT VEHICLE in the form of one unfinished and or leaky building …..as the collapsed companies, and dusty heels of run-away developers and construction personnel disappear back to Asian shores, far away from Lake Tekapo ….. dangerously constructed, whole or in part, as a further burden on beleaguered Ratepayers of this fair city.

“What a stupid thing to assume!” you thunder.
“How? On what grounds?”, you chide.
“Dunedin NEEDS a five star hotel!”, imperiously.

You think it’s that simple ??
You’re about to be done over, Buds.

The inference being, oh great apartment hotel supporters, that all that glistens in green-tinted glass is gold, or might be a five star hotel. Yeah right.

It never was. The gold, I mean.
The five star hotel, I mean.
A hoover-up of NZ cash to offshore parties who remain anonymous throughout planning and consenting, and construction and building operation; all supported by the errant notion of immigrant labour and (imperfect) imported materials.

You might as well ask now, How MUCH will the Dunedin economy make ($$$) on this “slap in the face” to the community owned district plan (statutory), and the (strategic) spatial and the central city plans which are publicly consulted policy directions informing the city council’s annual and long term plans.

Not much.

****

During five days of evidence and submissions, one knowledgeable submitter, Mr Russell Lund – well up on construction management, hotel building costs, the visitor accommodation market and investment patterns, and the risk and liability to local authorities in consequence – carefully outlined the quandaries which for various councils around New Zealand have become money-losing Unalterable Fact.

In the original written submission for himself and Suzanne Lund (affected property owners), Mr Lund asserted:

The “assessment of effects” is hollow and of no substance. Under the Act, the assessment of effects is required to be just that, an assessment of effects on the affected properties and tenants. Incredibly, the assessment makes no attempt to examine the effects on all the affected parties.

This, of course, is echoed in independently written and voiced submissions by many opposing the application; and curiously, it is underlined in evidence given by Mr Don Anderson (planning consultant) and Mr David Compton-Moen (urban design, visual amenity consultant), for the applicant.

My own submission to hearing states:

We can’t take what is offered [from the applicant] on trust, because it is incomplete and imprecise; therefore the assessment of effects is difficult to pin down to anything concrete and remains unhelpfully superficial – this was “the work” the applicant was to table for us, we thought, to generously persuade us that moving beyond the ‘norms’ of height in this Dunedin location has measurable benefits against other sites or, through strong honest examination of design alternatives for this site.

I am open to being persuaded. It is expensive to do that persuading. However, it has to happen in other city centres in this country. For an expensive building, isn’t it worth doing the budgeting for preparation of your case – to get the result you want, which is consent to subdivide and build. These are open questions but they lie at the heart of A for architecture as the practical art and science of building economics and professional practice. Behind and in front of the commercial facades, that must have depth of delivery. […] And so I come to the white building model here [a 3D-printed solid plastic model of the proposed building, of hand-held size, put into evidence by Christchurch architect Thom Craig], and the drawings presented by the applicant. There appears to have been too much time spent on merely diagrammatic ‘entreaties’ to architectural form and texture without hacking into 3D investigation. There is not one clear drawing of the way the podium can work for the public or the ‘retailers’ or ‘exhibitors’ – or indeed the people staying at the hotel, servicing the building functions and or using vehicles on site. We get an idea ‘about it’, a not convincing one, there is too much guesswork to do. And so the commissioners’ questions have been rather intense.

****

Now, back to the points the Lunds are making. In their original submission on the application, Mr Lund says:

7. I have serious concerns about the expertise and amount of resource that has gone into assessing the feasibility of the project. In the last year, the Otago Daily Times advised the developer, Mr Tosswill of Horizon Hospitality, had indicated that the cost of the project, which was then 200 rooms and 52 apartments was $50-75M. The proposal now is for 210 rooms and 66 apartments, which is not substantially different. The car parking and front of house areas are similar to the original application. The application confirms the hotel has a gross floor area of 20,835 m2.
In my opinion this hotel will be not built for anything less than around $100M, and this casts serious doubts over the viability of the scheme.
Evidence of this is found for the building costs of the much simpler 200 room 4 star Novotel Hotel being built at Christchurch airport after a competitive tender process (and utilising an Asian fabricated structural steel structure). It is well known in the building industry that the tender costs received for that very regular and efficient 7 level hotel were $4,500-5,000 per m2. The Novotel is a filing cabinet design, that is, it is a completely regular rectangular structure which provides the most efficient floorplates and the best wall to floor ratio, ie the least amount of exterior wall enclosing the maximum possible amount of interior space. The Novotel has no balconies.
The applicant’s proposal is far less efficient, and therefore more costly per m2, as it is effectively three blocks grouped around a central core, but the blocks themselves are not rectangular, but have recesses, and there is a significant amount of extra cost with most rooms having screened “smokers” balconies, which entails effectively, 2 exterior systems, one for the rooms, and another enclosing the balconies.

8. The application confirms there are 16,136 m2 of above ground (habitable or hospitality space) and 4,687 m2 of below ground, back of house / car park space. At a cost of $2,200-2,500 per m2 for the below ground floors, and $5,500 per m2 for the above ground space, the proposal has a construction cost of over $100m, excluding land, furnishings, design marketing, et al. The total budget excluding GST will be around $130M. A feasibility study will typically have to include a development margin of at least 20 %, preferably 25 %, if any sort of lender is involved. This means the end value of the project will need to be at or over $160M. If the best case scenario is adopted and Mr Tosswill is able to convince Chinese or other overseas investors to pay the current market value in Queenstown for premium, new managed hotel rooms and apartments of $10,000 per m2 – for a hotel with an unproven demand in Dunedin, it is still not enough.
Selling all the apartments and hotel rooms will yield about $90M, which is a long, long way from the $160M end value needed. The parking and lower public floor spaces on a yield basis will have a value of around $10M, that might get the project to $100M. Mr Tosswill in earlier reports stated that the value was around $90M, so while there is broad agreement on the likely end value, the estimate of the cost is not close to reality. Mr Tosswill may be planning to bring in a Chinese construction company who will park a retired cruise ship at the waterfront for the duration of the project and have their workers stay there, but they will be subject to the same minimum wage laws, working conditions and health and safety requirements that local companies face, which will dramatically reduce any cost benefit from using overseas labour. (The idea of having a cruise ship accommodating Chinese workers is not fanciful – the Chinese government offered to repair the damaged sections of SH1 after last year’s Kaikoura earthquake using that same method, and did not require any New Zealand labour resources, but the Government decided that this was politically unacceptable). One hopes it would be also unacceptable to have a Council endorsed project built using essentially, forced labour.

9. There is sufficient doubt around the financial viability of the project that the applicant should provide some evidence that the entire scheme is not in fact fanciful, but makes economic sense, and provide details about the proposed ownership model, which is highly relevant to Council, in light of their liability which is discussed below.

10. Mr Tosswill may think he is able to make savings from current building costs by utilising Chinese products, but many Local Authorities around New Zealand are very wary of various untested products as there have been many failures for which Local Authorities ultimately end up bearing the cost of.
This raises another issue which is the massive liability that the building control division of the Dunedin City Council will be exposed to, in relation to its building consent approval and compliance monitoring. The experience of the QLDC in recent years is extremely relevant : A large number of hotel and apartments have been built in Queenstown and the individual hotel rooms and apartments are sold off individually. A body corporate is then responsible for repairs and maintenance. The developer has no long term or permanent stake in the completed structure, and therefore no incentive to specify materials and pay for quality standards with the long term in mind. As Warren Buffet has said, “show me the incentive and I will show you the result”, and the result for QLDC has been an ongoing series of legal actions brought by Body Corporates against Council, alleging that Council was at fault in some form, and as they are the “last man standing”, the Council have inevitably had to pay substantial figures. [I have] experience of several of these, having repaired one major complex in Queenstown at a cost of several million dollars, and provided cost evidence in regard to two others, also in Queenstown in the last year. It should be remembered that QLDC has a 7 metre height limit, but despite this, on complexes less than a quarter of the size of the proposed hotels, the cost to repair has run to millions. QLDC has advised this year in the Otago Daily Times that it has now completely drained its reserve fund for remedial building work, and any further costs will need to come directly from ratepayers. It has spent $3.6M just on legal fees for remedial building liability cases, which will rise to close to $4M by the end of this year.

11. At the Hearing, in submission, some proposals will be presented to show how the design liability and weathertightness risk to Council and ratepayers can be mitigated in the unlikely event that the proposal is given consent and such consent is upheld in the Environment Court.

Proposal 1 : A bond be posted with Council to cover sufficient funds to get the building to completed weathertight envelope and have the podium and all external works completed in the event the project is halted.

Proposal 2 : The applicant provide a Owners Protective Professional Indemnity, and have DCC named as an insured party on the policy. This is to protect indemnify the DCC against any claims brought against them in relation the building consent process, compliance monitoring or any matter for which they are liable for.

****

The applicant tabled NEW evidence at the hearing, from Infometrics. At its website, Infometrics (NZ) says it “provides industry, regional, and general economic analysis and forecasts that assist organisations in making their planning, policy, and strategic decisions”.

In the Lunds’ submission to hearing under the subheading ‘Dunedin Hotel Economic Impacts – Ongoing GDP Effects’, Mr Lund says:

….Infometrics assume that the 64 apartments will all be in the hotel pool, but acknowledge this is unclear. This significantly increases the GDP contribution as it raises the income of the hotel by around 40%, assuming conservative tariff rates of $250 per night and $350 per night per apartment. Infometrics also assume that there will be no “crowding out” of the existing activity, ie ALL guests would otherwise have not come to Dunedin had this hotel not been there. This is an unrealistic assumption.
In my opinion this report is an example of tailoring assumptions to achieve the desired outcome.
At Section 2, the “impact” of the construction phase is estimated at $45.6M in total, but based on the “key assumption” that there is capacity in the construction sector to build the hotel without crowding out other investment”. This appears to mean that if other projects are delayed, there is in fact no benefit at all because $63M of other projects will simply be displaced by the alleged $63M cost of this project. History shows that in Dunedin, Clients such as the DCC, University and some private clients keep a close eye on the state of the market. Many Ministry of Education projects have strict cost guidelines, and will not proceed if they are over budget. There have been examples of work deferred in Dunedin when the market is busy, and the Post Office Hotel is one of them. The Owner Mr Geoff Thompson, deferred the construction of the hotel for several years when he first owned the property citing the overheated construction market, due to the construction of the $220M Milton Prison project in 2005-2007.
At the present time, there is a high level of commercial construction activity at present, witnessed by the fact that there are main contractors from outside Dunedin performing the 2 largest projects in Dunedin (The Dental School and the University Science 3 project). There is every likelihood some projects will be delayed due to the high level of activity.
The report assumes that 21.1M of the $63M, or a third of the cost, will flow into the local Dunedin economy. This would be on the basis that local companies and suppliers are employed, but this is far from clear, given the estimated cost of $63M. The only way the cost could be anywhere near this level is if virtually all of the materials were low cost imports, and quite likely a proportion of the labour cost component.
The only significant material that will be made locally is concrete, and it is only the basement levels that will be predominantly a concrete structure. If out of region companies were employed for work to do such trades as painting and carpentry, as they were at the Forsyth Barr stadium, then that figure will not be accurate.
Infometrics then ascribe $16.1M to the “second round of economic effects” but acknowledge there is some “leakage of spending outside the city”. If an outside main contractor, or even an overseas contractor completes the work, they will very likely bring with them their out of town networks of subcontractors and suppliers and there will be much less than the $16.1M as the second round of effects. Having completed many projects out of Dunedin, I have first hand knowledge of the negligible economic effect of construction on the region concerned. Generally, goods and services are sourced from habitual suppliers with whom there is an ongoing relationship, and only the small consumables are sourced from local suppliers.
Mr Tosswill should clarify what the intention is regarding the construction of the hotel, and if that is not forthcoming, then he should at least confirm what type and form of construction contract will be used as that perhaps more than anything will determine whether there is the possibility of a meaningful local business component.

On ‘Construction Cost’, Mr Lund refers the commissioners to the Lunds’ original submission, continuing with:

Further facts about construction
Examples of risk from imported products
FCC (Fletcher) budgeted to use Chinese sourced bathrooms in the Novotel Christchurch projects. Did not work. Has cost FCC $2M extra (unbudgeted) to get prefab bathrooms built locally in Canterbury. The cost is $26,000 per bathroom.
Chinese steel : there are 2 major CBD projects underway in Christchurch that are steel structures using Chinese fabricated steel. On one project the steel is 12 weeks late and on the other it is 16 weeks late. The Chinese suppliers had committed to make the steel, then out-sourced it to another firm without advising the contractor, and the delays have resulted. On one of these projects there is now legal action between the Engineer and contractor because of the nature of the steel does not conform to the specification.
There is a further major dispute litigation on another major project now completed due to extreme delays with the steelwork and external cladding. The project was around 10 months late, and the Owner lost the anchor tenant (The Government) due to the delay. That project was tendered on the basis of using a large degree of imported materials from China in association with a large state run Chinese construction company, but the project was so disastrous (financially and in terms of market perception), involving a loss of 8-15M on a $50M project, it has caused the company to withdraw from large scale commercial construction and focus on project management.
External Cladding : There are only a very small number of NZ firms with the capability to design and build the curtain walling, and they have a huge backlog and extremely onerous business terms that will not be acceptable to any funder or main contractor, so the Owner will probably need to contract with them direct, and take on this risk.

These important matters aside, the legal submissions brought to hearing by Ms Lauren Semple (for Millenium & Copthorne Hotels) and Mr John Hardie (for Misbeary Holdings Ltd) blew the application out of the water; so did the transport evidence to hearing by Mr Andy Carr (for Millenium & Copthorne Hotels) to which Commissioner Mr Stephen Daysh responded by asking if the problems (such as summit points, swept paths, access to basement parking, onsite coach travel, and truck travel as well as loading access) pointed out by Mr Carr in his assessment of the proposed building’s perimeter road were “fatal flaws”? Yes, was the direct reply. Refer article: Traffic problems at hotel (ODT 3.8.17)

The hearing is adjourned until 17 August.

All ODT can do is offer a flimsy and inconsequential readers’ poll.
Not Based On Reality. Go ODT! LOL

█ All application documents, reports, evidence and submissions for 143-193 Moray Place – Non-complying activity – LUC-2017-48 & Sub-2017-26 at this link.

Related Posts and Comments:
● 11.7.17 “Fat” gawky Hotel and Apartment building : Questionable design even with 4 floors lopped off
● 14.5.17 RNZ reports July hearings for proposed hotel apartment building [comments by Mr Tosswill]
● 4.5.17 Submissions close 10 May : Proposed 17-storey, est. 62.5 metres-high Moray Place hotel/apartment building
● 7.4.17 Proposed hotel *height and design* —the very least of it #sellingoursouls
● 5.6.17 Application lodged for FIASCO Hotel by Tosswill #DunedinWrecks
● 18.12.16 DCC set to take away CBD car parks without Economic Impact research
● 15.10.16 Battle of the hotels : DCC meat in the sandwich (unedifying)
● 5.10.16 Dunedin bauble #votecatcher
● 4.10.16 The Demon Duck freak show of partial ‘Civic’ information! Before voting closes! #Dunedin
11.1.16 Un hôtel. Dunedin.
19.8.15 Hotels ? Business ? [DCC lost +++152 fleet vehicles] —Cull in charge of building chicken coops, why ?
1.4.14 HOTEL Town Hall… Another investment group, Daaave’s pals from the communist state?
25.3.14 Hotel We LIKE: Distinction Dunedin Hotel at former CPO

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

█ The following images are taken from Appendix 6 – Consultant Urban Designer’s Report – Appendix plans (PDF, 1.5 MB).

They comprise
● 2 cross sections – originally provided as applicant evidence by Thom Craig Architects Ltd, and
● 7 photomontages of anticipated views – originally provided as applicant evidence by Paterson Pitts Group (surveying, planning, engineering)

– to which new height levels have been added in the evidence provided by independent Urban Design consultant Garth Falconer for Dunedin City Council.

[click to enlarge]








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Filed under Architecture, Business, Construction, DCC, Democracy, Design, District Plan, Dunedin, Economics, Education, Events, Finance, Heritage, Hot air, Hotel, Housing, Infrastructure, Media, Name, New Zealand, People, Pet projects, Politics, Project management, Property, Proposed 2GP, Public interest, Resource management, Site, Structural engineering, Technology, Town planning, Transportation, Travesty, Urban design, What stadium

“Fat” gawky Hotel and Apartment building : Questionable design even with 4 floors lopped off

What environmental considerations, Mr Page?

More than minor.

[Everyone will remember the learned Mr Page from the Betterways hotel and apartment building application for 41 Wharf St at the waterfront, not so long ago.]

Mr Bryce (independent planner): …a “key concern” for submitters…the building would block sun from reaching the Regent Theatre and surrounds from 3pm at winter solstice. “At this time of year, the proposal will effectively remove all remaining access to sunlight received over [the] southern end of the western side of the Octagon.” (ODT)

Mr Page (the developer’s ‘Brief’): The “potential shading effect” was acknowledged, but Mr Page was confident the hotel’s benefits “will far outweigh” those concerns. (ODT)

Mr Page, again : The hotel’s “tall, slender built form” minimised the impact on those living closest to the hotel project site… (ODT)

Good heavens.

Source: Application documents

At Facebook:

### ODT Online Tue, 11 July 2017
Hotel developer still confident
By Chris Morris
Dunedin’s latest five-star hotel bid will “not be viable” if the developer is forced to reduce the building’s height, it has been claimed. But the man behind the project, Tekapo businessman Anthony Tosswill, remains confident the hearings panel set to decide the project’s fate can yet be swayed by the hotel’s benefits. The comments came from Phil Page, the lawyer acting for Mr Tosswill, days after the public release of an independent planner’s report running the ruler over the hotel proposal.
The report by Nigel Bryce concluded consent be declined unless Mr Tosswill agreed to a “substantial reduction” in the building’s height, by four storeys, to bring it down from 60m to 45.5m.
Read more

****

Resource Consent Application LUC 2017-48 and SUB 2017-26, 143 – 193 Moray Place, Dunedin (Proposed Hotel)

The hearing will be held on Mon 31 Jul, Tue 1 Aug, Wed 2 Aug, Thu 3 Aug and Fri 4 Aug 2017 in the Edinburgh Room, Municipal Chambers (off the Octagon). The hearing will commence at 9.30 am each day.

Consultant Planner’s Section 42a Report (PDF, 4.3 MB)

[excerpt]

SUMMARY OF RECOMMENDATION
[5] For the reasons set out in paragraphs 72 to 334 below, I consider that the Proposal in its current form, will not promote the sustainable management of natural and physical resources in accordance with Part 2 of the Resource Management Act 1991 (RMA or the Act).
[6] The Development promotes a contemporary design, which is considered acceptable within this setting and articulates sufficient design interest and modulation through the facades and its pinwheel like form expressed in the tower component of the building. The building’s design incorporates a base building or podium, which allows the structure to have an active street frontage to Moray Place and Filleul Street, which is considered a positive design response.
[7] The Development will be ‘juxtaposed’ against a backdrop of the heritage buildings located to the east of Moray Place, including the Town Hall and St Paul’s Cathedral when viewed from the west and St Paul’s Cathedral and the Municipal Chambers when viewed from the south (including from the Octagon).
[8] The building’s overall height is considered to generate an over-dominance on properties to the north and west of the Site, and will have more than minor adverse effects on the amenity values of residential properties to the west of the Site. This is largely due to the significant change in scale introduced by the Development and the lower scale built environment that currently exists to the west and north of the development site, comprising predominantly two to three storeys in height.
[9] The Development will adversely impact upon the townscape values of the TH02 Octagon townscape precinct under the Operative Dunedin City District Plan (Operative Plan), including loss of sunlight penetration into the Octagon during the Winter Solstice and will adversely impact upon the setting and pre-eminence of existing heritage buildings such as the St Paul’s Cathedral and the Municipal Chambers building when viewed from the Octagon.
[10] The Development is considered to result in more than minor visual amenity and shading effects on Kingsgate Hotel to the south of the Site. The Kingsgate Hotel will experience prolonged and more sustained loss of light over a wider part of the property and associated buildings over the critical morning period during the Equinox and Winter Solstice periods (or collectively over ¾ of the year). This conclusion has been reached having regard to the potential for the Site to be developed up to a maximum height of 11 metres with a building erected against all boundaries (the ‘controlled activity building outline’).
[11] For the scale of the building to be mitigated to an acceptable level, and to maintain and enhance the amenity values of the City Centre and wider environs, Council’s urban design consultant, Mr [Garth] Falconer recommends reducing the proposed building height by four levels to bring the total height down to nine storeys (Level 13, +157,500 (datum level) on Drawing Section AA). This reduction would provide for a maximum height of 45.6 metres from existing ground level, or a maximum height breach of 34.4 metres (including the lift shaft). This mitigation response would not remove any of the 210 visitor accommodation rooms (hotel rooms), and would maintain supporting facilities including licensed premises, retail, conference, meeting facilities and on-site amenities, parking, and servicing areas. I note, for completeness, that the Applicant is not currently proposing to reduce the height of the Development.
[12] In its current form, it is my recommendation that the proposal should be declined.

More about Garth Falconer, DCC’s consulting urban designer:
LinkedIn profile: https://nz.linkedin.com/in/garth-falconer-a0699bb3
Owner and Director, Reset Urban Design Ltd: http://reseturban.co.nz/

Take a glimpse of the ‘urban form’ at Takapuna, North Shore Auckland (his home turf), to know Mr Falconer is likely missing any handle on building height for a heritage city like Dunedin.

****

Agenda and all documents including Submissions at:

http://www.dunedin.govt.nz/council-online/notified-resource-consents/notified-applications-pending/luc-2017-48-and-sub-2017-26

****

At Facebook [see comments]:

### ODT Online Sat, 8 Jul 2017
Reject hotel bid: planner
By Chris Morris
A planner has recommended rejecting Dunedin’s latest five-star hotel bid, unless the developer agrees to a “substantial reduction” in the building’s height. The recommendation to decline consent came in a report by independent consultant Nigel Bryce, made public yesterday, ahead of the public hearing beginning on July 31. In his report to the panel of independent commissioners, Mr Bryce said the hotel development would “visually dominate” its surroundings, including the town hall, St Paul’s Cathedral and the Municipal Chambers. It would be the tallest building in the central city and would cast a shadow over the Octagon, as well as the nearby Kingsgate Hotel, during winter. Together with other impacts, the development was considered to be “non-complying” under the city’s district plan rules. It would only be acceptable if the building was reduced by four storeys, lowering its overall height from 60m to 45.6m, which was still well above the existing 11m height limit for the site, his report said.
Read more

[initial coverage]
7.7.17 ODT: Decline hotel consent: report

### ODT Online Wed, 28 Jun 2017
Two from North Island on hotel hearings panel
By Chris Morris
The panel to decide the fate of Dunedin’s latest five-star hotel bid features one familiar face and two from the North Island. Tekapo businessman Anthony Tosswill’s bid to build a 17-storey hotel and apartment tower in Dunedin would be considered over five days, beginning on July 31, it was confirmed yesterday. […] The panel of three would be headed by chairman Andrew Noone, now an Otago regional councillor, acting in his role as an independent commissioner. […] Alongside him will be fellow independent commissioners Stephen Daysh, of Napier, and Gavin Lister, of Auckland.
Read more

Related Posts and Comments:
● 14.5.17 RNZ reports July hearings for proposed hotel apartment building [comments by Mr Tosswill]
● 4.5.17 Submissions close 10 May : Proposed 17-storey, est. 62.5 metres-high Moray Place hotel/apartment building
● 7.4.17 Proposed hotel *height and design* —the very least of it #sellingoursouls
● 5.6.17 Application lodged for FIASCO Hotel by Tosswill #DunedinWrecks
● 18.12.16 DCC set to take away CBD car parks without Economic Impact research
● 15.10.16 Battle of the hotels : DCC meat in the sandwich (unedifying)
● 5.10.16 Dunedin bauble #votecatcher
● 4.10.16 The Demon Duck freak show of partial ‘Civic’ information! Before voting closes! #Dunedin
11.1.16 Un hôtel. Dunedin.
19.8.15 Hotels ? Business ? [DCC lost +++152 fleet vehicles] —Cull in charge of building chicken coops, why ?
1.4.14 HOTEL Town Hall… Another investment group, Daaave’s pals from the communist state?
25.3.14 Hotel We LIKE: Distinction Dunedin Hotel at former CPO

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

Source: Application documents

15 Comments

Filed under Architecture, Business, Construction, DCC, Democracy, Design, District Plan, Dunedin, Economics, Education, Enterprise Dunedin, Finance, Geography, Heritage, Hot air, Hotel, Infrastructure, LTP/AP, Media, Name, New Zealand, OAG, Ombudsman, Otago Polytechnic, People, Perversion, Pet projects, Politics, Pools, Project management, Property, Proposed 2GP, Public interest, Resource management, Site, Structural engineering, Technology, Tourism, Town planning, Transportation, Travesty, University of Otago, 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

12 Comments

Filed under Stadiums

Cr Vandervis replies to local newspaper

Updated post Sun, 26 Apr 2015 at 2:44 p.m.

Meeting of the Dunedin City Council on Tuesday, 28 April 2015 at 1:00 PM, Council Chamber, Municipal Chambers

Agenda – Council – 28/04/2015 (PDF, 96.6 KB)

Report – Council – 28/04/2015 (PDF, 172.7 KB)
Conduct Committee Report to Council

Updated post Sat, 25 Apr 2015 at 3:00 a.m.

From: Lee Vandervis
Sent: ‎Friday‎, ‎24‎ ‎April‎ ‎2015 ‎9‎:‎02‎ ‎p.m.
To: Chris Morris [ODT], Nicholas George S Smith [ODT]
Cc: Elizabeth Kerr
Subject: Follow-up questions

Dear Mr Morris,

There are serious DCC issues underpinning the Code of Conduct process.

DCC Bureaucracy has run many months of self-investigations costing quarter of a million dollars, which this Councillor has not been allowed to see the results of.

Unbelievable claims that the acknowledged $1.6++ million worth of fraud was all perpetrated by one man only, now dead.

Months of Police investigation leading nowhere, with no prosecutions because they only looked at missing vehicles and anticipated that all receivers had to say was they thought the dead man had authority to sell in the way he did. And they all did. This despite many assurances from CEO Bidrose to me from the beginning that there would be a full and wide investigation.

My requests to the Serious Fraud Office [including discussion of 3 year plus investigation of Landfill frauds by local Police] to do the job local Police are seem not to be up to. CEO Bidrose claims SFO had been asked to investigate but SFO have no knowledge of this when I ask them to investigate.

Police investigation only claimed to be widened by Police management after my exposing of their very narrow investigation. Still no prosecutions, or Police interest to date in my offered evidence of Citifleet maintenance contract fraud, credit card fraud etc.

Mayor Cull and CEO Bidrose saying that no public comment allowed while investigations ongoing, but commenting themselves that it was all down to just one man and that the public can have confidence in the living remainder of the DCC organisation.

Mayor Cull accepting non-confirming [devoid of any evidence] Conduct complaints against me.
Crs. Thomson and Staynes add tampered evidence to one of their complaints but not the other – both immediately accepted again by Mayor Cull.

Mayor Cull falsely claims it is within his authority to choose the membership of the Code of Conduct committee against me. Is defeated.
Mayor Cull chooses again, this time with majority Councillor rubber stamp.

CEO Bidrose fails to ensure proper meeting and Code of Conduct processes over many weeks, fails to read my related email, finally culminating in hallway loudness. My full apology should have been printed and still should.

Audit and Risk committee fails to address major DCC problem of contract fraud, identifying 17 types of fraud but not including contract or tender fraud which I have been complaining of repeatedly.
Audit and Risk chair refuses ultra vires to allow any discussion or debate on 40 page pivotal financial report confirmed agenda item which I had previously indicated in the meeting I wanted to speak to.
Cr. Calvert also wished to speak to it but the Chair abused her authority and shut it down. This along with a history of other A&R suppression was the cause of this loudness and my final exit from this committee.

These are all real issues with stories you should be interested in Mr Morris, but instead you bypass the reasons “Whatever the reasons for your frustration…” miss the important issues and ask 5 inane questions about my behaviour.
These are the actions of a gossip columnist, not a reporter.

Cr. Vandervis

{Draft text deleted at Cr Vandervis’s request. -Eds}

On 24/04/15 4:11 PM, “Chris Morris” wrote:

Lee,

I’m following up on this morning’s story. I tried to include as much as I could of your comments, where they addressed the issues being raised in the conduct committee’s report, but I’d still far rather talk through it all point by point, in detail.

Failing that, can you respond to these specific questions about where to from here:

1. Whatever the reasons for your frustration, do you now accept that your behaviour (as reported by witnesses in the report) was bullying, aggressive and intimidating and included swearing (which you initially denied)?

2. If you do, what changes (if any) will you make to modify your behaviour, other than the previously mentioned plan to raise concerns with council staff only by email?

3. What is your reaction to the comments by Richard Thomson, who said your approach was counter-productive and your talents wasted?

4. What is your reaction to the comments by Cr Thomson and others suggesting a genuine apology might be the best way forward? Will you consider this, or do you plan to offer one at Tuesday’s meeting or at any other time, or do you maintain that you have already offered one?

5. Do you think your behaviour (as described in 1) is in any way appropriate for an elected public representative? If not, and given the limited sanctions available to the council, will you be considering your position, including whether or not you should resign?

Chris.

SICK QUOTES
—care of whatifdunedin

Richard Thomson Facebook - ODT 24.4.15 Cr Thomson on Cr Vandervis 1Mayor Cull on Cr Vandervis - ODT 24.4.15

ODT articles:
Penalty urged for Vandervis
Voting rights loss ‘punishing wrong people’

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

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

33 Comments

Filed under Business, Citifleet, DCC, Democracy, Economics, Media, Name, New Zealand, OAG, People, Police, Politics, Project management, Property, SFO

DCC re Dr Bidrose’s time as most senior Citifleet Manager

From: Sandy Graham
Sent: ‎Friday‎, ‎24‎ ‎April‎ ‎2015 ‎4‎:‎16‎ ‎p.m.
To: Lee Vandervis
Cc: Sue Bidrose, Elizabeth Kerr
Subject: RE: Overestimation of Dr. Bidrose’s time as most senior Citifleet Manager

Dear Lee

Please find attached the information you have requested about the responsibilities of Dr Bidrose.
It took a few days to collate as I wanted to ensure accuracy.

The information will also be forwarded to all Councillors for their information.

Regards
Sandy

[click to enlarge]

Sue Bidrose - timeline of managerial responsibilities 2010 - 2013 [screenshot]

█ Download: SUE BIDROSE RESPONSIBILITIES (PDF, 16 KB)

————

From: Sandy Graham
Sent: Friday, 17 April 2015 8:45 p.m.
To: Lee Vandervis
Cc: Sandy Graham; Sue Bidrose; Elizabeth Kerr
Subject: Re: Overestimation of Dr. Bidrose’s time as most senior Citifleet Manager

Dear Lee

I will get this information on my return to work on Monday.

Regards
Sandy

Group Manager Corporate Services
Dunedin City Council

————

On 17/04/2015, at 4:12 pm, Lee Vandervis wrote:

Dear Sandy and Sue,

Thank you for correcting my overestimation of the time Sue was senior manager of Citifleet prior to becoming DCC CEO.
I sincerely apologise for my inaccuracy.
To avoid future inaccuracy on my part, can you please clarify which departments Sue was in a managerial position over and for what periods in the years Sue was at the DCC prior to be coming our CEO.

Kind regards,
Lee

The overestimation was made in Cr Vandervis’s open letter found at the highlighted link below (15.4.15). -Eds

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

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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Filed under Business, Citifleet, DCC, Democracy, Economics, Name, New Zealand, OAG, People, Police, Politics, Project management, Property, SFO

DCC severely FAILS councillor #naturaljustice #contempt

Updated post Sun, 26 Apr 2015 at 2:45 p.m.

Meeting of the Dunedin City Council on Tuesday, 28 April 2015 at 1:00 PM, Council Chamber, Municipal Chambers

Agenda – Council – 28/04/2015 (PDF, 96.6 KB)

Report – Council – 28/04/2015 (PDF, 172.7 KB)
Conduct Committee Report to Council

Received from Lee Vandervis
Thu, 23 Apr 2015 at 6:22 p.m.

█ Message: Your readers may be interested in this email exchange below.

—— Forwarded Message
From: Lee Vandervis
Date: Thu, 23 Apr 2015 15:58:40 +1300
To: Sandy Graham
Cc: Stuart Anderson [University of Otago], Andrew Noone, Andrew Whiley, Chris Staynes, Doug Hall, Hilary Calvert, John Bezett, Jinty MacTavish, Kate Wilson, Mayor Cull, Mike Lord, Neville Peat, Richard Thomson, David Benson-Pope, Aaron Hawkins, Sue Bidrose
Conversation: Code of Conduct public announcement
Subject: Re: Code of Conduct public announcement

This does not answer my governance question Ms Graham, as to why I was not advised that this was coming out.
There has been nothing standard about any of this Code of Conduct process.
Cr. Lee Vandervis

————

On 23/04/15 11:48 AM, “Sandy Graham” wrote:

Dear Councillor

The report formed part of the public agenda that was delivered to all Councillors last night in advance of Tuesday’s meeting.

The media receive a copy of the agenda at the same time as per our standard process.

Regards
Sandy

————

On 23/04/2015, at 10:34 am, Lee Vandervis wrote:

Code of Conduct public announcement
Dear [as in expensive] all,

I have been rung by media this morning wanting my comment on the outcome of the Code of Conduct claims against me.

Nobody has had the decency to inform me of what these outcomes might have been, despite the exceptionally long time the production of these outcomes has taken.

Can anyone advise me why the media seem to have this information well in advance of me, or is it just standard process for a show ‘trial’, in which I have not even been allowed to see 2/3 of the ‘evidence’.

Cr. Lee Vandervis

—— End of Forwarded Message

Received from Lee Vandervis
Thu‎, ‎23‎ ‎Apr‎ ‎2015 at ‎7:12‎ ‎p.m.

Re: Code of Conduct decision

I have sent my response to today’s Code of Conduct decision just sprung on me to you since I can not rely on ODT reporter Chris Morris to accurately present it.
Fortunately most interested parties read your blog anyway.

I am innocent of the Code of Conduct claim that I have misled the non-pubic Audit and Risk committee regarding the Citifleet fraud investigations.
The guilt lies with those DCC staff and some elected representatives who for years failed to act on my Citifleet fraud and other whistle-blowing allegations despite the DCC records evidence available to them. Some of this evidence has recently emerged in the Deloitte reports which I continue to seek.
If my allegations and evidence had been appropriately acted on, many matters of grave concern would have been dealt with when the record shows I raised them as early as 2011.
DCC staff refusal even now to let me see the full main unredacted Deloitte Citifleet Fraud report, or the Deloitte staff report, or the digitised relevant DCC records evidence, further increases my suspicion of a cover-up.
Questions regarding the role of new DCC CEO Bidrose as senior manager of Citifleet prior to becoming CEO, and of what she knew of my allegations in the years prior are some of the many questions yet to be answered.

What has been shown is that the Police investigation was certainly very narrowed up until my complaint of this narrowing to CEO Bidrose and the Police investigating officer, some six months after the Citifleet manager’s sudden death. Subsequent claims by Area Commander Jason Guthrie that the investigation has been widened have not been supported by Police following up on the evidence I tried to interest them in: the Citifleet maintenance contract fraud, DCC credit card use fraud, etc. or by any convictions, or other widened investigation action that has been visible to me.

The two loudness claims, evidence of which I have not been allowed to see and therefore defend, both come back to the shutting down of the wider DCC contract fraud debate, and the resulting multiple abuses of Code of Conduct process to try and shut me down.

The four prescribed penalties suggested in the Code of Conduct report are:

1 -Censure
– the Mayor has already done this on pubic and non-public occasions.

2 -Request Apology
– I already apologised for loudness at the time

3 -Suspension of voting right only in Committees, not Council
– abuse of my representative function, but a wet bus ticket given my continuing right to debate

4 -Dismissal from positions of Deputy Mayor, Chairperson or deputy chairperson of a committee
– Mayor Cull already did this at the beginning of the triennium.

The Mayor’s recommended members of the Code of Conduct Committee have run an expensive Kangaroo Court with only my loss of two months committee voting rights to be recommended. It will be interesting to see if enough Councillors will vote for that.
It will also be interesting to see what the voting public think – do they want wide investigation and full disclosure or do they just prefer good news stories from the DCC.

Kind regards,
Cr. Vandervis

Received from Lee Vandervis
Thu, 23 Apr 2015 at 7:17 p.m.

—— Forwarded Message
From: Lee Vandervis
Date: Thu, 23 Apr 2015 19:15:55 +1300
To: Chris Morris [ODT], Nicholas George S Smith [ODT]
Conversation: Code of conduct report
Subject: Re: Code of conduct report

Chris,

I have sent my response to the What If site, as I can not rely on you to accurately present it.

I was out last night, and the first I heard of the Code of Conduct decision today was radio media wanting comment.

Cheers,
Lee

————

On 23/04/15 3:34 PM, “Chris Morris” [ODT] wrote:

Lee,

I’ve sent you a text with a very basic outline of the key findings. Happy to hear from you at any time today or tonight for a detailed response once you’ve read the report in full. I understand it was hand-delivered to your house last night.

Cheers,

Chris.

—— End of Forwarded Message

Related Posts and Comments:
15.4.15 Cr Lee Vandervis: Open Letter to the DCC Code of Conduct Committee
18.3.15 Lee Vandervis releases emails #Citifleet investigation
17.3.15 DCC whistleblowing —what is open government ?
13.3.15 Cr Lee Vandervis: LGOIMA…. Citifleet Investigation – Deloitte Report
26.2.15 DCC and the day(s) of Madness
23.2.15 Lee Vandervis on DCC Code of Conduct process #emails #naturaljustice
15.2.15 DCC…. ‘CEO Bidrose confirms no Vandervis complaint with a hug’
6.2.15 Cr Lee Vandervis apology
5.1.15 DCC: Chairman denies true and correct Council record
19.12.14 Vandervis: Deloitte and Police Citifleet investigations
19.12.14 DCC Citifleet by email . . . . woops! (another timeline proof)
18.12.14 DCC: Deloitte report released on Citifleet #whitewash
24.10.14 DCC Citifleet, more revelations….
21.10.14 DCC Citifleet, undetectable….
1.9.14 DCC Fraud: Further official information in reply to Cr Vandervis
30.8.14 DCC Fraud: Cr Vandervis states urgent need for facts….

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

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

35 Comments

Filed under Business, Citifleet, DCC, Democracy, Economics, Name, New Zealand, OAG, People, Police, Politics, Project management, Property, SFO

Cr Lee Vandervis: Open Letter to the DCC Code of Conduct Committee

Updated post Fri, 17 Apr 2015 at 6:45 p.m.
Correspondence from Lee Vandervis in reply to Sandy Graham and Sue Bidrose; and forwarded note to Code of Conduct Committee – entered below last update to post.

Updated post Fri, 17 Apr 2015 at 1:46 p.m.
Correction received by email from Sandy Graham, DCC General Manager Corporate Services entered below Open Letter.

Received Wed, 15 Apr 2015 at 11:24 a.m.

█ Message: I have forwarded this Open Letter to the DCC Code of Conduct Committee in an attempt to debunk the many misleading claims around the DCC Citifleet fraud investigations.
I am happy to provide supporting email evidence for anything stated below that your readers may find questionable.
Cr. Vandervis

—— Forwarded Message
From: Lee Vandervis
Date: Sun, 12 Apr 2015 22:48:00 +1300
To: John Bezett, David Benson-Pope, Stuart Anderson
Conversation: OPEN LETTER TO THE DCC CODE OF CONDUCT COMMITTEE
Subject: OPEN LETTER TO THE DCC CODE OF CONDUCT COMMITTEE

OPEN LETTER TO THE DCC CODE OF CONDUCT COMMITTEE

Dear Sirs,

Three separate Code of Conduct issues have been raised against me this year following my Code of Conduct complaint against Mayor Cull which Deputy Mayor Staynes decided, without giving his reasons to me, not to refer to you.
There has been an uncomfortable mix of assertions and facts in the limited evidence that has been presented regarding the claim that I misled over Citifleet investigations, which I would like you to consider.

Provable facts include my long mostly non-public attempts to clean out dysfunctional management at the DCC since I was first elected in 2004. Partial success keeps me going.
I never expected whistle blowing to be popular, but neither did I expect such personal attacks for my trouble on behalf of our ratepayers.

Regarding the Citifleet frauds, my records show my many 2011 complaints to senior DCC management of: inappropriate DCC vehicle disposal, Citifleet manager selling vehicles to himself, credit card fraud, vehicle maintenance tender fraud, and tyre fraud are all well documented.
What is equally clear is that nothing was done to seriously investigate these complaints which all turned out to have substance until almost 3 years later when the Citifleet manager’s ‘sudden death’ resulted in new CEO Sue Bidrose ordering the DCC accountants Deloittes to investigate.
Dr. Sue Bidrose had been the most senior manager in charge of Citifleet and many other DCC departments prior to becoming CEO. It is my view that whatever evidence she might have given is not only inadmissible in terms of process because I had not been advised in advance of her evidence or her intention to give evidence, but that Dr. Bidrose is compromised because of her years as the senior manager of Citifleet prior to the Citifleet manager’s sudden death.

In the month following the Citifleet manager’s sudden death I repeatedly urged CEO Bidrose and head of Governance Sandy Graham to resist the temptation to minimize the frauds’ fallout by narrowing the investigation or by blaming it all on the dead manager. Although later admitting that the initial request for investigation related mainly to missing vehicles, CEO Bidrose gave me assurances from the beginning that Deloittes and then later Police would conduct a wide investigation. This provably did not happen with the Police, and I have no evidence other than yet another management assurance that it has or will really happen.

CEO Bidrose also gave me assurances from the beginning of the investigations that if I could provide hard evidence of DCC staff stealing even one dollar she would ensure prosecutions followed. Unfortunately the DCC records evidence which I have sought to complete hard evidence cases against both DCC staff and those involved outside the DCC has been denied me by CEO Bidrose, despite my making LGOIMA requests for it last year, namely: both the full unredacted Deloittes report, the Deloittes staff report, and the digitised evidential files which Deloittes collated for their investigation.
In that month following the Citifleet manager’s death I became very concerned when CEO Bidrose did not achieve a proper Police investigation apparently ‘because Police lacked the resources’, and that only the accounting investigation by Deloittes was to take place. I was relieved that Deloittes’ investigator Kyle Cameron seemed to have a good grasp of the many Citifleet complaints that had been made to me during his detailed interview of me, and that subsequent to the Deloitte reports Police were to investigate fully after all.
My concerns about Police having a belated investigation three months later are recorded, as are my concerns that Police requested that no public statements be made about Citifleet while their belated investigation was in progress. This despite Mayoral and CEO public statements that the Citifleet frauds were all the work of one now dead man.

I have highlighted with evidence to the SFO and CEO Bidrose the extreme slowness of a previous Dunedin Police investigation into DCC Landfill frauds that took more than three years before one individual was finally prosecuted, and I have written to the Serious Fraud Office unsuccessfully urging them to have an outsider’s independent investigation into the Citifleet frauds because local Police seem unable to do the job. CEO Bidrose claimed that the SFO had been contacted re the Citifleet frauds, but curiously the SFO’s Sara Morris said to me that no request from the DCC to investigate had been received by the SFO prior to my request for them to investigate.

My worst fears for the hoped for DCC investigation were realised when the Police investigating officer Detective Mathew Preece interviewed me at my home six months after the Citifleet manager’s tragic death, in what he described as the last week of his investigation. Detective Preece said that the scope of his investigation was only the missing vehicles and that he had already interviewed all other people he intended to interview. He said that all those he interviewed regarding missing vehicles offered the defence that they thought the deceased Citifleet manager was authorised to dispose of the vehicles in the way that he did, and that subsequently there would be no prosecutions of anybody.
I told Detective Preece that I had received many Citifleet complaints for years regarding not only vehicle disposal but fraudulent Citifleet credit card use, tyre supply, fuel supply, and fraudulent Citifleet maintenance contracts and that I had a motor trade business owner and others prepared to give evidence on these issues.
That night I wrote the following email to CEO Bidrose, Head of Governance Sandy Graham and to Detective Preece voicing my concern at the very limited scope of the investigation, and the investigating officer’s understanding that he could not investigate anything else because he did not have any wider complaint from the DCC to act on.

From: Lee Vandervis
Date: Tue, 11 Nov 2014 22:57:31 +1300
To: Sue Bidrose, Sandy Graham, “PREECE, Matthew”
Conversation: Police Citifleet Investigation
Subject: Police Citifleet Investigation

Dear Sue,

An hour and a half spent with Detective Matthew Preece and another Policeman called Regan has left me with deep concerns regarding the Police Citifleet investigation.
Mr Preece has informed me that the scope of his investigation has been limited by the complaint the DCC has made to the Police, and that this complaint only concerns missing or inappropriately sold DCC vehicles.

Mr Preece says that because Police have not had a complaint from you or the DCC regarding;
– fraudulent Citifleet tender processes,
– fraudulent Citifleet tyre supply contracts,
– fraudulent Citifleet maintenance contracts
– fraudulent use of DCC Citifleet vehicle fuel
– fraudulent DCC accounting of Citifleet credit cards and other payment methods used and Citifleet managerial oversight
– and fraudulent use and conversion of DCC Citifleet vehicles [eg the conversion of a DCC-owned vehicle by Mrs Bachop]

and that consequently none of these fraud areas is being investigated!

Mr Preece did say that if you as CEO were to request that he broaden his investigation to include these other areas and not just the missing cars, that he would broaden his enquiry to include them. He insisted that he would have to have a broadened complaint from you as CEO for this to happen, and implied that a complaint from me as a City Councillor would not be enough to act on.

I have highlighted to Preece and Regan the urgent need to use the Citifleet manager’s tragic death to investigate and prosecute all Citifleet fraud areas, as a failure to do so will result in the loss of an unprecedented opportunity to clean out the culture of entitlement at Citifleet and in other DCC departments.

Can you please with urgency broaden the DCC complaint to include the 6 areas of potential Citifleet fraud listed above, so that Mr Reece can broaden his enquiry to include them.

Can you please also now with urgency, forward to me all instructions to Deloitte regarding the Citifleet investigation as previously requested in my email of 26/10/14 as below.

Is it possible to meet with you at any time tomorrow at your convenience to learn whether you have broadened the DCC Police complaint or not?

Kind regards,
Cr. Lee Vandervis

From: Lee Vandervis
Date: Sun, 26 Oct 2014 18:23:41 +1300
To: Sue Bidrose, Sandy Graham
Conversation: LGOIMA requests
Subject: LGOIMA requests

Hi Sue,

Further to my verbal requests of a week or two ago please forward copies of all original correspondence and or other direction given to Deloittes in regard to their investigation of Citifleet.
I wish to have the original brief stating the terms of reference, the subsequent brief where the investigation needed to be extended, and any other direction written or otherwise given to Deloittes regarding the Citifleet investigation.

I am deeply disturbed by what I have seen in parts of the investigation conclusions appearing without covering page or any details identifying them as parts of the Deloitte findings in non-public parts of the Audit and Risk subcommittee meetings.

I note a severe slowing on responses to my recent LGOIMA requests, and hope this has been a temporary frustration.

Kind regards,
Cr. Lee Vandervis

Subsequent email from Police Area Commander Guthrie claimed as follows:

From: GUTHRIE, Jason [mailto:Jason.Guthrie@police.govt.nz]
Sent: Saturday, 15 November 2014 10:48 a.m.
To: Sue Bidrose
Cc: COSTER, Andrew; INGLIS, Malcolm
Subject: RE: Investigation Update

Hi Sue.

I can confirm that DCC staff did not (and have not) in any way attempted to restrict, curtail, or limit the scope of the Police investigation stemming from the Deloitte report either at the 1 September meeting or at any other time.

At no stage has any undue influence been exerted by DCC staff on Police as to what should be investigated and what should not be investigated.

At the 1 September meeting it was agreed that the focus of the enquiry would be limited to activity around the 152 vehicles as this was considered to be the most likely aspect to potentially lead to a criminal prosecution.

To avoid any confusion, from the outset the Dunedin City Council has been clear in it’s desire that Police investigate matters arising from the Deloitte report independently, fully, and thoroughly as Police sees fit. The DCC has also been very clear in it’s desire that if any individual(s) are identified as being involved in criminal activity linked to the matters within the Deloitte report that those people be held accountable for that criminal activity.

I hope this clarifies the situation.

If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact me directly.

regards Jason.

Inspector Jason Guthrie
Area Commander | Dunedin Clutha Waitaki | New Zealand Police

Dunedin Central Police Station, 25 Great King St, Private Bag 1924, Dunedin, www. police.govt.nz
Safer Communities Together

Area Commander Guthrie’s response above says that “DCC staff did not (and have not) in any way attempted to restrict…the Police investigation”, but then goes on to say that …”it was agreed that the focus of the enquiry would be limited to activity around the 152 vehicles…”!

Commander Guthrie’s subsequent claim that the Police investigation would be widened has thus far failed to result in my being contacted to provide the further evidence I have already tried to give Detective Preece regarding credit card fraud, vehicle maintenance contract fraud etc. The lack of any prosecutions after so much time adds to my concern.
This seems to me to be another example of management claiming one thing but investigating officers doing another.

I am yet to be convinced either by Police taking an interest in my offered evidence or by any Citifleet related Police prosecutions that a serious Police investigation has really been effectively widened despite stated intention to widen, even at this now very late stage. I do not dispute Police management intentions, but see them as quite different to actual Police investigating actions, which seem to me to be more interested in sidelining me as a critic of their investigation than getting to the bottom of Citifleet fraud.

Regarding the two other loudness Code of Conduct claimed complaints, I do not recognise them and I remain far from content that CEO Bidrose and Cr McTavish at least have made ‘loudness’ statements to your Code of Conduct Committee [Cr. McTavish read hers] but not provided these statements to me in advance so that I could defend them. I see these loudness complaints as politically motivated attempts to ambush me outside of proper Code of Conduct process, and I do not accept that they can have any force.
The two staff that might have had reason to complain of my loudness, namely CEO Bidrose and Sandy Graham, have made no complaint and both have independently assured me that they did not make any complaint, CEO Bidrose with a hug, and Sandy Graham with an eye-roll.

I particularly resent the swearing allegation that no Councillor has admitted to claiming, despite Mayor Cull’s publicly repeatedly saying in the ODT that my swearing had been claimed by a Councillor. I note the irony that when Code of Conduct complaining Cr. Thomson left an earlier Audit and Risk meeting in a huff using the ‘F word’, that no complaint was forthcoming from anybody.

I take this opportunity to register my complaints regarding the running of this Conduct hearing.
1 – That the loudness complaints should never have been recognised as complying by the Committee for want of evidence.
2 – That I was not permitted to record the public part of the hearing in which I spoke, but that Media were allowed to take short-hand and thus given the opportunity to misquote me with impunity.
3 – That no reason was given when asked for, for not being able to record the pubic hearing.
4 – That parts of the hearing evidence were in public, but that apparently some evidence parts were non-public.
5 – that I have been given an extract only from your draft report, on grey paper marked confidential, ensuring that I can not as a result comment on it. The claim that “This is to ensure that the principles of natural justice and due process are observed.” is absurd, given that natural justice and due process have been absent throughout.

Looking forward to having this wasteful exercise in enmity drawn to a conclusion.
Cr. Lee Vandervis

—— End of Forwarded Message

[ends]

*Email addresses, phone numbers and web links removed. The company referred to above is “Deloitte”. The councillor surname is “MacTavish”. -Eds

CORRECTION

From: Sandy Graham [DCC]
Sent: ‎Friday‎, ‎17‎ ‎April‎ ‎2015 ‎1‎:‎31‎ ‎p.m.
To: Elizabeth Kerr [What if? Dunedin]
Subject: Correction

Dear Elizabeth

As discussed, I wish to correct a statement made by Cr Vandervis in his “Open letter to the Conduct Committee” which is published on your website.

The statement that the CEO Sue Bidrose had “years as the senior manager of Citifleet prior to the Citifleet manager’s sudden death” is incorrect. Sue had Regulatory Services (which included Citifleet, Building Control, Environmental Health, Parking Services) added to her General Manager portfolio for less than five months in 2013, immediately prior to being appointed CEO. This is clearly not “years” and needs correcting. Cr Vandervis’ assertions that Sue’s evidence to the Conduct Committee was therefore compromised is not supported by the facts.

Regards

Sandy

Sandy Graham
Group Manager Corporate Services
Dunedin City Council

—— Forwarded Message
From: Lee Vandervis
Sent: ‎Friday‎, ‎17‎ ‎April‎ ‎2015 ‎5‎:‎01‎ ‎p.m.
To: John Bezett, David Benson-Pope, Stuart Anderson
Subject: FW: Overestimation of Dr. Bidrose’s time as most senior Citifleet

Dear Code of Conduct Committee,

Please accept my apology for ignorantly overstating the length of time Dr Bidrose was most senior manager of Citifleet prior to becoming our CEO.
‘Years’ should read ‘5 months as the senior manager of Citifleet and then 6 months as CEO’ prior to the Citifleet manager’s sudden death.

Kind regards,
Cr Lee Vandervis

—— Forwarded Message
From: Lee Vandervis
Date: Fri, 17 Apr 2015 16:12:33 +1300
To: Sandy Graham, Sue Bidrose
Cc: Elizabeth Kerr [What if? Dunedin]
Conversation: Overestimation of Dr. Bidrose’s time as most senior Citifleet Manager
Subject: Overestimation of Dr. Bidrose’s time as most senior Citifleet Manager

Dear Sandy and Sue,

Thank you for correcting my overestimation of the time Sue was senior manager of Citifleet prior to becoming DCC CEO.
I sincerely apologise for my inaccuracy.
To avoid future inaccuracy on my part, can you please clarify which departments Sue was in a managerial position over and for what periods in the years Sue was at the DCC prior to be coming our CEO.

Kind regards,
Lee

—— End of Forwarded Message
—— End of Forwarded Message

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Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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