Tag Archives: Evidence

“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)


[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:



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


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


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:


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?


—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


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.


[click to enlarge]

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



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.


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,

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

Leave a comment

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.



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


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.



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


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.



—— 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


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


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


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


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.



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,

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

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

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


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

ODT on ERA hearing of claim and counter-claim | Lund South release

Updated post 6.10.14 at 7:55 p.m.

The long-running employment dispute between the owner of Dunedin construction company Lund South and its former Dunedin manager David Low returns to court in February 2015.

Last week the local newspaper offered stray comment which attracted a strong press response from Lund South. There is further news coverage today.

The full press release features below.

How it began:

### ODT Online Wed, 24 Sep 2014
Former Lund manager wins in court
By Simon Hartley
The former Dunedin manager of construction company Lund South has won the latest in a string of long-running court battles over non-payment of bonuses; covering two years of his almost nine-year employment with the company. […] At stake was understood to be around $500,000 in bonuses and legal costs of at least tens of thousands of dollars.
Read more

The news item is notable for a lack of balance.

█ Lawyers advise this is the extent of comments that can be made:

Lund South logoLund South - Press release 25.9.14


What appears today:

ODT Online Mon, 29 Sep 2014
Bonus dispute set to continue
By Simon Hartley
[…] In response to an ODT article last week about an Employment Court finding this month, [Russell] Lund said in a statement that despite earlier court findings the “substantive issues” of the case were yet to be heard in court. A substantive hearing would be held in February, when the Employment Relations Authority would consider Mr Low’s claim and Lund South’s “substantial counterclaim” against him, he said.
Read more

It is extraordinary, in the context, Mr Low concedes at hearing that ‘during the disputed period he was not functioning at his full potential’ and confirms he has been ‘a disloyal employee to Lund South and commented negatively about the business to others inside and outside the business’.

Also at hearing, Mr Low says Mr Lund is ‘entitled to draw unfavourable comparisons’ between his performance and that of Lund South’s then Queenstown manager.

Other employees at Lund South may care to comment.

We can only wonder…..
It’s interesting that the judge has sealed evidence from the hearing. Assume from this the likelihood of forthright revelations and exposure of Mr Low’s situation in court next year. To that encounter ODT may deign to send an experienced court reporter able to grasp finer points.

David Low’s own advisers have commented that the majority of Mr Low’s claim is destined to fail and have urged mediation and compromise.

Lund South Ltd v Low [2014] NZEmpC 173 [Judgment of Judge B A Corkill, 18 September 2014] (PDF, 152KB)

CONTRACT – Defendant informed of proposed changes to role in September 2008 – Proposed changes purportedly included cessation of defendant’s bonus entitlements – Changes not properly formalised in individual employment agreement until September 2010 – Defendant resigned with effect from June 2012 – Preliminary question as to whether defendant’s bonus entitlement ceased from October 2008 or continued until September 2010 – No agreement that defendant had agreed to stand down from role in late 2008 – Bonus continued until September 2010 when defendant was formally offered new position.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Business, Construction, Media, Name, New Zealand, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Site