Tag Archives: Otago

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

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

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

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

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

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

Comment published at ODT Online:

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

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

McMeeking Manufacturing, 123 Maclaggan St

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

. . . .

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

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

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

26 Comments

Filed under Aurora Energy, Business, Central Otago, Construction, DCC, DCHL, DCTL, Delta, Democracy, Design, Dunedin, DVL, Economics, Education, Electricity, Finance, Geography, Health, Hot air, Infrastructure, Media, Name, New Zealand, OAG, Ombudsman, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Public interest, Queenstown Lakes, Resource management, SFO, Structural engineering, Technology, Tourism, Town planning, Travesty, What stadium

Coastal erosion, Taieri Mouth : ‘DCC shouldn’t rush into potentially costly repair job’

Hands Off | Let’s Write Another Report | Let’s Take Another Year….

[The same appears to apply to repair and upgrade of the Aurora Energy power network (except, minus the DCC reports!) and Delta’s Yaldhurst subdivision (let’s spend UNTOLD MILLIONS with no due diligence by DCC itself!). And what was that about another subdivision hitherto unmentioned, patience Whatiffers…..]

Instead, DCC rushes to spend Public Funds by building cycleways on SH1 before external subsidies dry up.

The core infrastructure DEBACLE continues.
Thanks DCC, you’re a star.

taieri-mouth-by-alastair-smith-flickr-com-3287453742_5bd2f5cba4_oTaieri Mouth by Alastair Smith [flickr.com]

### ODT Online Sat, 28 Jan 2017
Board wants urgent action on erosion
By Chris Morris
The Saddle Hill Community Board is calling for “urgent” action to address worsening coastal erosion threatening part of Taieri Mouth Rd. A group including board chairman Scott Weatherall and Dunedin City Council staff visited the area, about 100m north of Dicksons Rd, again this week to inspect the damage. The area had been slowly slipping away for years, monitored by the council, but Mr Weatherall said  action was now needed.
It was reported last year erosion had stripped about 10m of the bank, exposing fence railings and a telecommunications cable, and Mr Weatherall said this week it was continuing to creep closer to Taieri Mouth Rd. “It’s absolutely getting worse,” he said. The problem was at its most “significant” at that location, but also a problem in other areas along the coastal route, he said.
The council, after monitoring the situation for years, had responded more recently with a traffic management plan, including cones and new fences, he said. However, the advice from council staff to the board had been that money to fix the problem was not available until the next financial year.
Read more

[click to enlarge]
google-maps-taieri-mouth-rd-and-flagged-dickson-rd-otagoGoogle Maps – Taieri Rd and (flagged) Dicksons Rd, Otago

google-earth-taieri-mouth-rd-and-flagged-dickson-rd-otagoGoogle Earth – Taieri Rd and (flagged) Dicksons Rd, Otago

dcc-webmap-taieri-mouth-rd-and-dicksons-rd-area-janfeb2013DCC Webmap – Taieri Mouth Rd and Dicksons Rd coastal area JanFeb2013

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Comment received:

Donald
2017/02/08 at 2:03 pm
I see Cr Wilson’s at it again with her expert knowledge on road issues. First it was the cycle ways and the shambles she headed. Now she is giving her knowledgeable opinion about the erosion hazard on a section of Taieri Mouth Road. Even though the Chair of the Saddle Hill community board called for urgent action. Cr Wilson calls it concerning, but council should not rush a solution. Could the gestation period for this fix be another 20 reports and $200,000 later it is decided that ‘Oh we did have a problem, but not any more, we don’t have a road’. Clean out the swamp.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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DCC hideous ‘Adam of your labours’

ODT 28.1.17 (page 30)

2017-01-28-20-33-02[phoneshot scribbled – click to enlarge]

DCC is rubbish governance.

Comparing the two territorial authorities, ORC and DCC, ODT says “the regional council has been a wiser council-company owner”.

Ain’t that the sheer truth with bells on, oversewn with screaming sirens and flashing red lights.

Stuff that up your blood-soaked jumper, Dunedin City Council.

DCC takes the knife to Ratepayers’ private wealth, there’s no sign of let up. Blunt force trauma, gushing blood and the decimated entrails of a city once thriving.

The squalid recent history of Dunedin City Council is one of incompetence and worse : failed schemes, massive overburden of debt, inability to prioritise, budget and project manage, crippling levels of deferred maintenance and upgrades for essential infrastructure, unprosecuted thefts, corruption in certain of the CCOs and serious questions about the holding company (last year, a ‘partial audit’), Otago power network assets burnt off (no safety and security of supply), a dead loss-making stadium and associated companies clawing $20million per annum off ratepayers (no valid explanation, just mindless spin), destruction of high class Taieri soils for housing sprawl initiated by city councillor with a private profit motive, trite succession of gormless city councillors lining own pockets/inflating egos at the council table – leaches and nematodes have more credibility. On it goes at DCC.

Otago Regional Council is debt free.

### ODT Online Sat, 28 Jan 2017
Editorial: City and ORC merger unlikely
OPINION Any progress towards one or more unitary authorities in Otago will be difficult, largely because of the region’s geography. The Dunedin City Council this week ordered a report into a possible merger between it and the Otago Regional Council, and it would be surprising if proposals which might emerge make much headway with the Local Government Commission.
….Since 1988, the [ORC] has received a total of $148.9million in dividends and special payments from Port Otago. How the city must covet that cash. Given the city’s pressures on Delta/Aurora for dividends and the regional council’s hands-off attitude to the Port Company, it would seem, however, the regional council has been a wiser council-company owner.
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Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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Delta : Latest Outage #Tainui #DegradedUnsafeNetwork

Otago Daily Times Published on Nov 16, 2016

“Standard safety protection operated immediately ensuring that the downed line was de-energised and electrically safe.” –Delta [PR]

### ODT Online Wed, 16 Nov 2016
Power restored in Tainui
By Vaughan Elder
Power has been restored to 430 customers in the Dunedin suburb of Tainui after it was cut this morning when a line came down. The outage happened at 9.10am after a power line fell on Cavell St near the intersection with Magdala St. […] Despite the line leaving scorch marks on the ground, the Delta spokesman said the line coming down presented “no danger to the public”.
Read more

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Alert To Future Posts:
Delta is riddled by massive HEALTH AND SAFETY problems, perpetuated by a Sick and Dysfunctional executive culture (CEO, and ELT silos), resulting in a preyed-upon, demoralised, risktaking ‘make-do’ workforce.

The risks to individual lines staff are Ginormous. ‘Fatal conditions’ abound. Corporate care ensuring the physical and mental wellbeing and safety of staff is almost completely lacking. The risks to life are exponentially Unacceptable.

What’s needed ?
Independent senior industry experts (plural) prepared to Scrutinise Delta and Talk Out Loud : to see to immediate replacement of the inexperienced ‘make-worse’ CEO Grady Cameron – and to swiftly empower thoroughly coordinated, highly risk averse and analytical professional work teams to prioritise and carry out network upgrades and replacements.

But what about the money….. there is none. The cost of bringing the electricity network up to compliance standard is Astronomical. A different model of ownership and operation is required –potentially, an opportunity, the Community could assume ownership of the network. Hopefully, ODT can explore the options by looking at other successful models – and which have No Ability to ‘strip and burn’ the asset.

Various sources inside Delta tell us the company has brought in an ex staffer as ‘Consultant’. They are paying him $5000 a day…. to skim the surface, was it. But really, Delta is setting up a new company ‘within Delta’ to replace the dangerous poles (at a Very Slow rate) – the work will be contracted out to the usual culprits. More soon.

Related? The NZ Companies Office notes:
‘DELTA NETWORKS LIMITED – Approved Name Reservation’

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vaughan-elder-odt-files-1Wed, 16 Nov 2016
Valpy Rosebowl winner
Otago Daily Times reporter Vaughan Elder has been named the newspaper’s 2016 Valpy Rosebowl Trophy winner. […] The award, for editorial excellence, is presented annually on the anniversary of the November 15, 1861, publication of the first issue of the ODT, New Zealand’s oldest daily newspaper.
Read more

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Certainly, Vaughan Elder and the other journalists at ODT are holding their end up with timely coverage of the unfolding Delta ‘dangerous poles’ situation. However, the poles – although highly visible and a useful tool to raise Community awareness – are actually the least of it in terms of danger to Delta lines crew and the Community.

Lots to come out in the next days from sources inside and outside Delta.

All the while the Dunedin City Councillors sit on their hands, without a peep about COST TO RATEPAYERS AND RESIDENTS.

Remember, through the glass darkly, Mayor Cull made a song and dance before the local body elections about having reduced the council’s debt by some small millions; crowing his success with “straightening out council companies”.

This was ‘reinforced’ by [fleeing] Richard Thomson ‘at the end of his last meeting as chairman of the council’s finance committee’, informing us the council’s debt at the end of June had dropped to $217.25 million. ‘This was $30.6 million below budget and well below its target of $230 million by 2021.’

Ahem, ticking the third box of authoritative commentary, on 7 October Graham Crombie rolled up to tell us DCHL’s profit was up 57% and ‘debt across the companies and the council has reduced by $16.8 million to $581 million’. Oh dear, All progress lost and squandered now as Delta borrows $30M to replace the odd pole here and there, with god knows what other spending to be made in the vain hope of compliance.

Dear Daaave : Win some, Lose squillions more.

Otago Daily Times Published on Sep 2, 2016
Dunedin mayoral candidate Dave Cull
The clock is ticking as Dunedin mayoral candidate Dave Cull gets 30 seconds to explain why he should be mayor.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

*Image: odt.co.nz – Vaughan Elder, tweaked by whatifdunedin

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Filed under Aurora Energy, Business, Delta, Dunedin, Economics, Events, Infrastructure, Media, Name, New Zealand, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Public interest, Stadiums

Report from the University Landscape Trenches : Financial shoring collapsing, trouble brewing

Received from Rhodes
Mon, 24 Oct 2016 at 9:14 p.m.

Saturday’s ODT had an interesting article about delays on the troubled University of Otago landscaping project. This article is the canary in the University construction goldmine, as there are other even much larger disputes brewing on current University projects that certainly will become a goldmine for the contractors, to the detriment of the University’s financial health.

uoo-landscaping-20160508_135933Hoarding, University of Otago

Mr Mackay said the complications on the landscaping included “replacing old water, sewage and drainage pipes”. What he did not say is that this work was meant to have been done two summers ago, BEFORE the academic year, but due to the project management, it was not. However, this landscaping project is small beer, there are much bigger problems looming.

The University, in their biggest ever project, at the 11th hour, on the “advice” of a contractor, Fletcher Construction, who we understand did not even finally submit a bid, told the University they could save a few hundred thousand on the $100 million project by deleting the need for a cost control schedule…. that would have severely limited what the contractors could charge for changes and extra work. In a monumental display of incompetence, the University stopped production of the schedule – which was already underway and had to be part paid for anyway and put the drawings and specifications out to tender without a schedule. If the drawings were 100% complete and the University wasn’t to change its mind that would be OK, but the Pope is more likely to preach at Canterbury Cathedral than this happening. Of course, the drawings are woefully incomplete, and the arguments and changes have started. Watch out for Someone from the University Property Services division, in about a year, to be in full dissembling mode about the delays, and how, “even though it’s six months late, it’s still on budget”. If that is the case, the budget has massive doses of incompetency cover built into it !

An additional problem that’s about to come home to roost in the University and Otago Polytechnic’s coffers is insistence, by University Property Services, on the use of “Early Contractor Involvement” (ECI). (Someone at University Property Services has never met a new construction euphemism he did not use or a project delay that he could not justify). Both the University and Polytech on recent large projects have engaged in tender processes where there is no fixed sum, because the documents are far from complete, and the current fashion du jour is to have “early contractor involvement” where the builders are paid to be involved in the design phase, to provide “constructability” expertise. Basically the builders make a submission to say what nice people they are, and advise percentage site overhead and profit margins they would build the project for. The rest of the cost, about 85-90%, is just guesswork. (“Provisional Sums”). This process allows the “tender evaluation team” (mainly the Architect and the University) to choose who they want, without regard to price, because the weighting for “non-price attributes” is a lot more than 50% of the total weighting.

On both the University commerce building project, just started by Naylor Love, and the Polytechnic Hostel project (also won by Naylor Love), this was the process. Both projects are around $20 million all up. Significantly, the architect on both projects was Mason & Wales. There were a number of other consultants in the design teams. The politest way to put the next point is that there appeared to be “confusion” about the proposed early contractor involvement process from the team. It was thought, inexplicably, that this wonderful new system of selecting builders without worrying about price meant not only did they get to choose ones with very high margins who wouldn’t cause problems when the inevitable design problems arose, some consultants also thought that they could charge full fees and offload all of the detailing onto the builder…. which of course did not happen. Builders, in the South Island anyway, do not employ armies of CAD operators who can document bespoke large projects. That is what designers are for…. In both cases, the successful Naylor Love bid was hundreds of thousands of dollars more expensive than lower bids. Also in the case of both bids, the University and the Polytech paid a premium of around $500-600,000 to have the “ECI/ constructability” experience of Naylor Love…. only to find that the advice received was NOT what was expected…. the Polytech project has been now costed by Naylor Love and is $1.5-2.0 million over budget, and the “expert” constructability / ECI advice that the Polytech effectively paid $600,000 for is…. wait for it…. to make the building smaller. Hmmm, expensive and brief advice! Best not tell the Humanities students ! The other unsuccessful contractors may well feel aggrieved about how this process played out, as before they were even allowed to provide a proposal they had to prove their capability and experience to do the work, so in theory all tenderers were equally capable, and there was no logical reason for the favouritism to Naylor Love…. but were there other reasons ? There appears no meaningful financial oversight, the project teams seem a law unto themselves, and the suspicion is that both institutions’ funds are being spent in a very free and easy fashion.

[ends]

Related Posts and Comments:
18.7.16 Misero-mercenary at U of O
1.7.16 No one wants to work for U of O
25.9.15 University calling Property Services
28.3.15 University of Otago landscaping
24.7.13 University: Leith flood protection scheme and landscaping
31.5.13 University of Otago development plans
27.5.13 Carisbrook and Leith flood protection
17.11.10 Leith Lindsay Flood Protection Scheme
17.5.10 Campus Master Plan
28.1.10 University of Otago Campus Master Plan

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

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Filed under Architecture, Business, Construction, Design, Dunedin, Economics, Finance, Media, New Zealand, Otago Polytechnic, People, Pet projects, Politics, Project management, Property, Public interest, Resource management, Site, Travesty, University of Otago

Dunedin Voting Paper Returns

dcc-election-returns-to-8-oct-2016-as-at-11-26am-screenshot

Daily return of voting papers for Dunedin City Council

Daily return of voting papers for other 2016 Local Elections

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

Election Year. This post is offered in the public interest.

*Image: screenshot tweaked by whatifdunedin – click to enlarge

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Filed under Business, Democracy, Dunedin, Geography, New Zealand, People, Politics, Public interest

DCC Voting Paper Returns

Voting Paper Returns – check these out daily

Once voting opens information on numbers of votes returned each day will be available:

Find out the daily return of voting papers for the Dunedin City Council

Find out the daily return of voting papers for other 2016 Local Elections

Check out election candidates’ names and profiles here:

DCC & Community Boards
http://www.dunedin.govt.nz/your-council/electoral-information/elections-to-be-held-and-nominations-dunedin-city-council

ORC
http://www.dunedin.govt.nz/your-council/electoral-information/elections-to-be-held-and-nominations-orc

vote2016_logo

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

Election Year. This post is offered in the public interest.

*Image: electionz.com

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