Tag Archives: Poor management

DCC not Delta #EpicFail : Wall Street falsehoods and a world class debt

Received from Christchurch Driver [CD]
Tue, 14 Feb 2017 at 9:16 a.m.

Readers 

We are at an interesting time in our local history. Your correspondent like hundreds of others was busy cleaning up yesterday, after what NIWA described as a fairly standard thunderstorm where just 13.6mm of rain fell. 

Also like hundreds of others no doubt, the question in the mind of your correspondent as he dutifully mopped, was : What is the next public asset to be exposed as poorly run, badly maintained and starved of funds ? 

Never before have the executive few lied so comprehensively about the true state of so much degraded public asset. Never before has so much public asset been destroyed by the actions of those few, as Winston might have said. 

Economists your correspondent is familiar with would call this the “tragedy of the commons”. We await the “macro-prudential” responses from Central Government. With the stupefying level of underfunding for DCC drainage and other underground services identified by the Auditor-General, coupled with Aurora Energy’s $1B deferred maintenance and capital work, plus the existing DCC debt, there is around $3B that will need to be extracted from ratepayers and power consumers over the next 30 years (see the Dunedin City Council Infrastructure Strategy). Dunedin has achieved its dream as a world leading small city – of debt per ratepayer. Dunedin will be broke beyond comprehension with the policy of 3% annual rises. The 3% limit is a mirage. Rate rises will be much, much more. Not this year, but quite possibly before the next election; if this council does not address the looming crisis there is the increasing possibility of the removal of the council and appointment of a commissioner. 

It seems that every week brings some fresh disaster or new development that the DCC attempts to cover up. 

Yesterday was a small but telling episode. David Loughrey of the Otago Daily Times kindly confirmed what your correspondent mentioned some months ago, that the DCC had terminated the services of Logic FM because the company would not look the other way while the DCC wilfully failed to fix hundreds of obvious fire rating defects at two of their major assets. 

Mr Kevin Taylor wrote that the council [fired] Logic because the company had been “interpreting code compliance…..beyond that required by the law”. Logic publicly scoffed at this saying – correctly – that the code is “relatively black and white”. 

What actually happened is that as well as the uncompleted fire penetrations, there is a case of simple DCC incompetence, which was only hinted at by infrastructure networks general manager Ruth Stokes in the ODT article. Here are the facts : The Wall Street mall required daily inspections of certain of its building safety systems. The DCC did not want to pay outside consultants to do this work. Fair enough, said Logic, we will train your staff to inspect the systems and they will then sign off a daily inspection sheet, which Logic as the IQP (Independent Qualified Person) need to sight every month. 

wall-street-mall-interior-teamarchitects-co-nz[teamarchitects.co.nz]wall-street-mall-logo-1wall-street-mall-exterior-wallstreetmall-nz-1

Month after month, the monthly reports could not be signed off because no one had completed the daily sign-off sheets. There were offers of more training to the apparently mule-like staff responsible but City Property could not be bothered to do it properly —and thought they could get away with not doing these daily inspections by appointing another more compliant IQP in-house and seeking cover with a further fire report by Beca. 

It is very relevant that after sacking Logic FM, and commissioning the report from Beca, DCC refused to provide a copy of the Beca report to Logic. Logic had asked repeatedly for the report to see what the alleged areas of “over compliance” were. 

It is ‘madeira cake to margarine sandwiches’ that there were no areas of over compliance, and but for Elizabeth Kerr’s LGOIMA request and latterly, the ODT, City Property may well have gotten away with inaccuracies! 

As it is, your correspondent sees only static for Mr Taylor in the DCC crystal ball. He is merely the latest in a line of unlamented DCC property managers, including Robert “Hydraulic” Clark, and Dave McKenzie.

Ruth Stokes also needs to very careful about stepping into this mess – and dissembling to protect Mr Taylor. Stating that “things could have gone a bit better, but they’ve all been addressed” does not fool anyone. Mr Taylor may have have fantasised to Ms Stokes that “all” the fire rating faults were fixed but remember your correspondent advised there were hundreds of faults, not just a few faults in one single wall as has been pretended. There is no way all the faults have been fixed. 

This is what Richard Healey would describe as the Delta dishonest reduction defence…. no, not a 1000 dangerous poles without red tags, but perhaps there are just a few…. and now we learn on that fiasco, that the ‘new’ Delta plan, unannounced to the region’s mayors, is that they can be magically restored to full strength by yet another re-classification.

Chief executive Sue Bidrose started her tenure with a promise of greater transparency and openness (read “honesty”) that was sorely needed. There was some early progress, but the transparency project appears a priority no more.

With the financial storm clouds assembling over the DCC that the chief executive cannot fail to be aware of, some honesty about the actual costs the DCC faces over the next decade is needed. It ranges from the small – just how much will it take to fix Wall Street mall to the $1B existential Aurora problem. The CEO and her staff have been invisible on this critical issue, instead producing reports of risible fantasy such as last year’s effort that valued Delta at over $50M, and Aurora at over $200M. Facing up to an austere decade is the only way that Dr Bidrose and Councillors will avoid having their careers and reputations destroyed by the appointment of a commissioner. 

[ends]

Council Documents:
DCC Infrastructure Strategy
DCC Long Term Plan 2015/16 – 2024/25
Audit Opinion – Independent auditor’s report on Dunedin City Council’s 2015-25 Long‑Term Plan. Author: Ian Lothian, Audit New Zealand on behalf of the Auditor‑General, Dunedin NZ.

ODT Stories:
14.2.17 Councils, Aurora poles apart on ‘removing risk’ definition
13.2.17 Without warrants for years
11.2.17 Aurora affected by pole, staff shortages
8.2.17 Action by Delta decried
29.12.16 Director for $30m pole project
2.12.16 Resignation blow to pole work

Related Posts and Comments:
22.1.17 DCC LGOIMA Response : Wall Street Mall and Town Hall Complex
30.11.16 Delta #EpicPowerFail 7 : Kyle Cameron —The Money or the Bag?

█ For more, enter the terms *delta*, *aurora*, *grady*, *wall street mall*, *richard healey*, *steve thompson*, *dchl*, *epicfail*, *epicpowerfail* or *epic fraud* in the search box at right.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

*Images by Parker Warburton Team Architects

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17 Comments

Filed under Aurora Energy, Business, Central Otago, Construction, DCC, Delta, Democracy, Design, Dunedin, Economics, Education, Electricity, Events, Finance, Geography, Health, Infrastructure, LTP/AP, Media, Name, New Zealand, OAG, Ombudsman, People, Perversion, Politics, Project management, Property, Public interest, Queenstown Lakes, Resource management, Site, Structural engineering, Travesty, What stadium

Our loss-making public bus system, as for the colours *spew

Inner city Dunedin is NOT a freaking circus or Disneyland.
Obviously, the bozos at ORC/DCC think differently.

Here is something CHEAP-NASTY-like:

Troughing consultants, transportation planners and those who purport to be ‘urban design’ from both councils appear to be barely out of grade school —my god, it shows (see video).

PRIMARY SCHOOL
Colouring in, by non-learned non-contextualists —who manage do it so very BADLY. This is absolute proof that Landscape Architecture at Dunedin is DEAD, BANKRUPT and bloody SMELLY. My cardboard box of pet maggots could design “the interchange” better. They could: swiftly, cleanly, without the disease that is ‘the carnival-scathed’ at local government.

Junior short-term work experience only, no proven local body management expertise or ‘factory floor’ experience whatsoever, now make for ‘team leader’ placements at Dunedin. That’s how tragic the workpool is. Low shoulder-tapping at the tertiary institution is no substitute for a smart council workforce, not that we have a hope in hell of attracting one.

Business leaders need to Take Dunedin!
By Storm, from the doughbrains at local government.
But Business leaders, Entrepreneurs and Investors now have the Largest, most IMMENSE PROBLEM.

At this un-populous sinking town :
At the productive, growth-generating Central Otago and Queenstown Lakes :
THERE IS NO AFFORDABLY SAFE AND SECURE POWER SUPPLY
None! This is All down to leaders, councillors, directors and executives at DCC, DCHL, Delta and Aurora.

And ORC/DCC think the sorry ratepayers and residents can afford an improved, convenient and efficient bus system. Ho. Ho. Ho.

Apart from or because of the buses making losses….

Clearly, the proposed changes to the bus system are NOT designed to embrace the Accessible Journey —to enhance the experience of city travel for mobility impaired citizens.

The Regional Public Transport Plan 2014 and the Dunedin City Integrated Transport Strategy 2013 DO NOT anticipate the growth of Uber, new technology or ‘other’ vehicular modes of travel, or indeed anything that is the future of transport at (Our Place) Dunedin.

The proposed changes are NOT subject to ANY ECONOMIC STUDIES to safeguard businesses, vehicle users, and the users of public transport, city-wide. None! So Predictable. So Deficient. So Grossly Negligent.

Coloured road markings, a Fun Distraction when there’s a MASSIVE POWER BLACKOUT at Dunedin.

*Note: DCC does not have a spare ONE BILLION DOLLARS in the bank to right Aurora/Delta’s wrongs.

The Otago Regional Council says:

Dunedin Bus Interchange (hub)
Dunedin’s public transport is changing. Since the adoption of the Regional Public Transport Plan (RPTP) in 2014, Otago Regional Council (ORC) has been rolling out network wide changes to create an affordable and connected public transport system in Dunedin. While many of these changes focus on implementing direct and stable bus routes with regular frequencies, we are also looking to improve the accessibility of the bus services, information, and infrastructure. As part of these changes we are providing a bus interchange (hub) in the city centre to make your bus journey better.

█ To find out more and how to make submissions, go to http://www.orc.govt.nz/Information-and-Services/Buses/Bushub/

There are several things the ORC can do immediately to signal its serious intent in improving services to its ratepayers. (ODT)

### ODT Online Wed, 7 Dec 2016
Editorial: Bus hub challenges
OPINION Public transport is essential in any major centre and now Dunedin faces its own challenges with the release of the long-awaited central-city bus hub plans. The Otago Regional Council is seeking community feedback on the hub planned for Great King St, near the central police station. It includes five parking bays on each side of the street. […] The idea of a Great King St hub cannot be taken seriously if people are going to be forced off one bus and on to another in quick time. […] Dunedin’s central area is the Octagon and the regional council needs to recognise the need to keep buses flowing through the Octagon.
Read more

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Bus hub part of $3million transport project, including “super stops”. 38 car parks lost from Great King St between Moray Pl and St Andrew St.

### ODT Online Mon, 5 Dec 2016
Dunedin bus hub details released
By John Gibb
The Otago Regional Council has unveiled its long-awaited central Dunedin bus hub plans and is seeking community feedback. The bus hub, also termed the “bus interchange”, is, as previously signalled, in Great King St, near the central police station. It includes five parking bays on each side of the street. […] The size and style of bus shelters are partly dependent on public feedback, and also on any negotiations required with owners of nearby land, to be undertaken early next year. It is also proposed to use paints or other coloured materials, including on part of the street, to give the hub area a more lively appearance.
Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

24 Comments

Filed under Aurora Energy, Business, Central Otago, DCC, DCHL, DCTL, Delta, Democracy, Dunedin, DVL, DVML, Economics, Electricity, Finance, Geography, Highlanders, Infrastructure, Media, NZRU, NZTA, OAG, OCA, Ombudsman, ORC, ORFU, People, Perversion, Pet projects, Politics, Project management, Property, Public interest, Queenstown Lakes, Resource management, Tourism, Town planning, Transportation, Travesty, Urban design, What stadium

DCC Chief Executive, please not a footstep follower . . .

### ODT Online Fri, 25 Mar 2011
47 apply for Harland’s job
By Chris Morris
Nearly 50 candidates – some from as far away as the United Kingdom – have applied to be the Dunedin City Council’s next chief executive.
Former council chief executive Jim Harland announced his resignation late last year and finished on January 21. Athol Stephens is acting chief executive in the meantime.
Read more

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### ODT Online Fri, 25 Mar 2011
Editorial: Slowing council rates rises
Local territorial authorities are in the midst of the rates season. They have been preparing draft annual plans, and these are now going out for public submissions. In several districts, the trend is at least downwards, and almost all draft proposals are well under the figures projected under long-term plans.
Read more

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### ODT Online Fri, 25 Mar 2011
Landfill becoming ‘seventh eyesore’
By Chris Morris
A mountain of rubbish at Dunedin’s Green Island landfill risks becoming “the seventh eyesore of the city” as work at the site enters a new phase, a Dunedin city councillor says. Cr Colin Weatherall has emailed Dunedin City Council staff to express concern at the work at the council-owned landfill, which is exposing a view of rubbish to residents in surrounding suburbs and motorists on the Southern Motorway.
Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

61 Comments

Filed under People, Politics