Tag Archives: False entitlement

Mayor Cull’s reflections on Edinburgh #SisterCity #Junkets

Edinburgh - New Town Old Town [thathideousman.blogspot.com]

Received from Cr Lee Vandervis
Wed, 13 Aug 2014 at 11:36 p.m.

Message: I thought it might be of interest that there has been no response from the Mayor, or from anyone else regarding my criticism of the latest round of Sister City tourism as below.

—— Forwarded Message
From: Lee Vandervis
Date: Wed, 06 Aug 2014 21:10:12 +1200
To: Dave Cull, Sue Bidrose, Sandy Graham, Andrew Noone, Andrew Whiley, Chris Staynes, Doug Hall, Hilary Calvert, John Bezett, Jinty MacTavish, Kate Wilson, Lee Vandervis, Mayor Cull, Mike Lord, Neville Peat, Richard Thomson, David Benson-Pope, Aaron Hawkins
Cc: Tony Avery, Grant McKenzie
Conversation: File – reflections on Edinburgh visit.docx
Subject: Re: File – reflections on Edinburgh visit.docx

Dear Dave,

Thank you sending us your preliminary reflections on visiting Edinburgh, which I know from personal experience to be especially pleasant at this time of year.
Since being elected in 2004 I have read many similar reflections on Sister City visits all of them similarly generic.
I note that your statement “So most of our time in Edinburgh was devoted to meetings with Edinburgh arts and cultural organizations, people or institutions.” is a fair definition of tourism, unless you are heavily into sports which might not necessarily be caught by the words ‘cultural organizations’.
Your claim that you went to “reinvigorate the sister city relationship” is untenable since there never has been any vigour in the relationship, as anyone who has done years on the Edinburgh Sister City Committee will confirm. The previously overused but safer ‘breath new life into the relationship’ would also fail as it is not possible to breathe new life into a corpse.
Ditto Otaru.
I take it that Dunedin will now be hosting some official reciprocal Scottish tourists by return when the Scottish winter bites.

At least Harland pretended to come back with a viable Scottish wind power design.

Kind regards,
Lee

On 6/08/14 4:26 AM, “Quickoffice” wrote:

Hi Colleagues, Attached a preliminary report on the Edinburgh experience. Dave

Colleagues,
The following is a preliminary report/reflection on our recently completed trip to Edinburgh while it is still fresh. There is considerable detail and learnings yet to be brought together from our various meetings.

This Sister City visit to Edinburgh was timed to coincide with the opening of the NZ in Edinburgh Programme. That included a national kapa haka group being a central part of the tattoo, an exhibition by Commonwealth artists partly curated by Aaron Kriesler of DPAG and many more performances/exhibits. NZ was the country of honor at the umbrella Edinburgh Festival. Our Governor General Sir Jerry Mateparae was a guest of honor with the 2nd Lord of the Admiralty at the Tattoo opening night.
Dunedin received invitations to Edinburgh from the the Lord Provost of the City of Edinburgh, Creative Scotland and the British Council.
The visit was timed to coincide because one of the objectives of going was to reinvigorate the sister city relationship, potentially through the medium of arts and culture. This was timely as Dunedin is currently developing an Arts and Culture Strategy, our Economic Development Strategy recognises the important potential of the whole creative sector and we are awaiting confirmation of UNESCO City of Literature status. The two cities obviously already have many cultural connections, going back to Dunedin’s founding and naming by Scots.
So most of our time in Edinburgh was devoted to meetings with Edinburgh arts and cultural organizations, people or institutions. They include Creative Scotland (equivalent of Creative NZ), Edinburgh University (2 depts), Councillor convener of arts and future committee, National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh International Book Festival, Edinburgh City of Literature, British Council, Institute of Scottish Studies, and Centre for the Book Edinburgh Napier University. We also met with the Lord Provost, attended the Tattoo and the opening of Aaron’s exhibition.
We are still processing what we learned, but a number of things made us very positive about the potential opportunity Edinburgh, and our relationship with her, could offer Dundin. First everyone, without exception, has been welcoming and has gone out of their way to engage, spend time with us and provide any information we asked for. Several organizations have express a desire to collaborate with Dunedin. One or two came to meetings with specific proposals! We have even had an approach from the Edinburgh suburb Corstorphine asking about partnering with Corstorphine, Dunedin. The bigger picture is that Edinburgh has essentially reinvented itself as a cultural/festival city. Certainly after World War II Edinburgh’s economy diminished drastically. Edinburgh was the first UNESCO City of Literature. Now festivals of various cultural complexions bring hundreds of millions of pounds into the city. Edinburgh views and defines itself as a creative, literary artistic city. So if nothing else Dunedin can learn an
enormous amount from Edinburgh’s experience across a range of initiatives. In addition there is considerable potential for collaboration and exchange between Dunedin and Edinburgh institutions, to their mutual benefit. There was emphatic interest in Dunedin performers performing in both Edinburgh and Glasgow at major events. Indeed Neville and Cara saw the Chills in Glasgow on Saturday night.
So while we have yet to fully de-brief and weigh up what we learned, it is clear that there is huge potential culturally, economically and academically for Dunedin in refreshing and developing our relationship with Edinburgh specifically and Scotland in general.

Related Post and Comments:
8.4.14 Cinderella Shanghai + 75 ugly sisters

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

*Image: thathideousman.blogspot.com – Edinburgh, Scotland

34 Comments

Filed under Business, COC (Otago), DCC, Economics, Events, Geography, Hot air, Name, New Zealand, Otago Polytechnic, People, Politics, Project management, Tourism, University of Otago, What stadium

Southern Region, serving itself —or professional rugby (and Sky TV)

### ODT Online Tue, 1 Jul 2014
Opinion
Fresh thinking needed in local government
By Ciaran Keogh
Perhaps it is time to look at a far-reaching reform of the way local government functions at both local and regional level. There are substantial efficiencies to be gained from integrating many council functions across the councils within the region. More than 10 years ago I did away with all IT functions at the Clutha District Council and merged these with Invercargill City. This model would work for all of the councils across all of Otago and Southland for little more than it currently costs Dunedin City Council to run its IT services.
Some fresh thinking needs also to be applied to the stadium and the first of these should be the monopoly that rugby has over it and the grass surface.
Read more

● Ciaran Keogh is a former chief executive of the Clutha District Council, Wakool Shire in the Riverina region of New South Wales, and Environment Southland. He now lives in Dunedin.

****

Crowds had been down right across the five New Zealand franchises but that was a worldwide trend, with fewer people attending events.

### ODT Online Tue, 1 Jul 2014
Rugby: Crowds can’t fall any further – Clark
By Steve Hepburn
The Highlanders met budget for crowds this year but have warned they cannot dip any lower if the franchise is to remain viable. In the eight games the Highlanders hosted at Forsyth Barr Stadium this year, 98,326 people came through the gate, an average crowd of 12,291 per game. […] A crowd of 11,070 attended the last home game, the win over the Chiefs, a figure that did not exactly delight Highlanders general manager Roger Clark.
Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

Leave a comment

Filed under Business, DCC, DVML, Economics, Events, Highlanders, Hot air, Media, Name, New Zealand, ORC, ORFU, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Queenstown Lakes, Site, Sport, Stadiums

Crowe Horwath Report (May 2014) – Review of DVML Expenses

Dunedin City Council released the following report through the LGOIMA process, in reply to Bev Butler who lodged an information request.

The report by independent auditors Crowe Horwath investigates the work expenses of DVML’s ex Commercial Manager, then part-time contractor Guy Hedderwick.

Crowe Horwath report cover (May 2014)

Download: Crowe Horwath Report – Review of DVML Expenses (PDF, 363 KB)

NOTE: The report is not the result of a forensic audit, which should now take place to provide clarification for Mr Hedderwick and his manager.

QUESTION: Why is Dunedin City Council not seeking requirement for a forensic audit?

Related Post and Comments:
9.6.14 DVML: Crowe Horwath audit report (Hedderwick)
22.3.14 DVML, Money for jam…..fig jam’ [see links provided]
4.3.14 Bev Butler: Guy Hedderwick’s departure package (LGOIMA)

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

6 Comments

Filed under Business, DCC, Democracy, DVML, Economics, Highlanders, Media, Name, New Zealand, ORFU, People, Politics, Project management, Site, Sport, Stadiums

DVML: Crowe Horwath audit report (Hedderwick)

Updated post 17.6.14

Crowe Horwath Report – Review of DVML Expenses (PDF, 363 KB)

Dunedin City Council has released a report recently completed by independent auditors Crowe Horwath, into the work expenses of DVML’s ex Commercial Manager then part-time contractor Guy Hedderwick. ODT reporter Chris Morris is covering the story.

[Received]

Readers of this site will recall the efforts that campaigner Bev Butler went through to track down the expenditure incurred by Guy Hedderwick while he was the Commercial Manager for Dunedin Venues Management Ltd (DVML).

After much effort through the LGOIMA process Ms Butler was told that Mr Hedderwick had run up bills of nearly $80,000 during 51 work-related trips since 2010.  

Readers will also recall the reaction by Neville Frost, DVML’s Finance Manager (ODT 22.3.14), who labelled Ms Butler’s claims of this expenditure as “completely inaccurate and ill-informed” while accusing her of “disgraceful” conduct and that she was “lacking in personal integrity”.  

Readers should now be fully informed that the figure of nearly $80,000 was indeed incorrect. The figure arrived at in the report compiled by Crowe Horwath is $144,879 – the amount released by Mr Frost in response to Ms Butler’s LGOIMA request has nearly doubled.

Readers should also be informed that the report found there was almost $4,000 spent by Mr Hedderwick with no evidence of what it was spent on; and a total of over $34,000 with no evidence of any approval.  

City ratepayers now need real answers to some basic questions.

1. Why, when Neville Frost was required to provide accurate information under an LGOIMA request on Guy Hedderwick’s expenditure, did he provide information that was inaccurate and misleading? Readers should not need to be reminded that when Steve Prescott, Manager of Aquatic Facilities at the DCC, did just this recently he resigned.  

2. Now that the full extent of Guy Hedderwick’s spending has been revealed by the Crowe Horwath report, can DVML still maintain as Neville Frost did in his press release, that it was “frugal”?  

3. What is DVML doing to obtain refunds from Guy Hedderwick on those sums incurred where there was no approval, or where there was no evidence of what the expenditure was for? For expenditure where there was no approval, is Neville Frost or Darren Burden at fault for lack of oversight and lack of management, and if so, should they be also responsible for repayment?  

4. What benefit to DVML and the ratepayers occurred from this $144,879 expenditure? Guy Hedderwick seems to have had carte blanche to travel at his own whim and it appears that DVML can’t point to any general or particular benefit from any of it.  

5. What accountability will be enforced by DCC, on behalf of the ratepayers, on the actions of Guy Hedderwick, for Neville Frost’s failure to both financially control this expenditure and to mislead and misinform both Bev Butler as the LGOIMA requestee and the general public by the content of his press release, and on the Board for its failures to contain costs?  

6. A full, comprehensive and public apology must be obtained from Neville Frost for his disgraceful and inaccurate statements made in his press release of March 22, 2014.

Note: Thanks to Bev Butler and Russell Garbutt for these statements.

Related Posts and Comments:
22.3.14 DVML, Money for jam…..fig jam’ [see links provided]
4.3.14 Bev Butler: Guy Hedderwick’s departure package (LGOIMA)

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

59 Comments

Filed under Business, DCC, Democracy, DVML, Economics, Events, Hot air, Name, New Zealand, ORFU, People, Politics, Project management, Sport, Stadiums, Tourism

Demand a full independent forensic audit of ORFU

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

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

16 Comments

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