Council infrastructure and networks committee chairwoman Cr Kate Wilson said last night the project would go ahead “regardless”. There was funding for three years, she said, and the fourth year’s funding would be part of next year’s long-term plan, and the one after that. The project was needed for safety reasons to prevent vehicles driving into the harbour and climate change making the road undriveable. (ODT) *Emphasis by whatifdunedin
### ODT Online Fri, 26 May 2017
Botched cycleway estimate short by $13m
By David Loughrey
A bungled Dunedin City Council cost estimate to complete safety improvements and a cycle/walkway on Otago Peninsula has left the project more than $13 million short. The council announced yesterday an estimate for the project on Portobello Rd and Harington Point Rd that includes a cycle/walkway from Taiaroa Head to the city had risen from $20 million to $49 million. The earlier estimate, drawn up in 2011, did not include parts of the cycleway to be built, land that had to be bought and a contingency fund to cover unforeseen expenses. […] Despite the cost rise, the council will start construction this year, with a shared cycle/walkway design.
Meanwhile WE will be paying for our Otago power network TWICE, at a crippling cost to business and residential power consumers well into the future —thanks to Dunedin City Council’s unsatisfactory governance of the companies Aurora Energy / Delta Utility Services and Dunedin City Holdings and, above all, the Council’s unfettered use of public funds to realise the dream of the Tartan Mafia and Professional Rugby to build the now frequently empty and under-utilised Forsyth Barr Stadium. (three concerts by Ed Sheeran in highly doubtful acoustic conditions inside ‘the roof’ does not a Christmas make).
All this because the Council conveniently fails to ensure it covers the infrastructural basics (in this instance: the safe, secure and continuous supply of electricity) – affordably – for the static if bearly stable City of Dunedin, and the sparcely populated Otago region in the mode of fast pumping growth. (There are simply too few permanent ratepayers to uphold ‘big bloated dreams’ and money siphoning on the rates take).
The Council did not ensure that Aurora Energy / Delta Utility Services were sufficiently well structured to Avoid profligate spending, making subvention payments to the stadium companies, or borrowing to pay dividends to the Council. (Probably the least of it).
There have been YEARS of dangerous neglect, embellishing the lack of repair and upgrade to the Community of Otago’s electricity network.
The Council is not well enough controlled (corporate and financial oversight) in order to Avoid its own profligate spending —so to protect, support and upgrade Otago’s power network as the solid basis for regional economic development and SAFE living —with CERTAINTY and SECURITY OF SUPPLY.
Instead, The People will now be plunged into further debt by the circus wheel of local body politicians and the morally thin and rather malevolent boards of directors (masters of spin) controlling the companies.
It’s time the People of Dunedin and Otago took control of their power infrastructure. Resolving, if they will, to adopt a different ownership and delivery model – one option is to form a democratically elected Community Power Trust to own and oversee the network; this is a sound regional model that is proven to work in other jurisdictions, with all due care.
WE have to Safeguard our future.
Not leave decision-making to unvetted members of the Tartan Mafia.
Especially not those in thrall to the likes of Gordon Stewart and his ilk (a vague reference to Delta’s speculative dealings at Yaldhurst, Christchurch – Delta is presently in a discovery process via an action brought to the Christchurch High Court by Caveators claiming Constructive Fraud).
DO NOT sell the ‘fragments remaining’ of the Otago Power Network (as bleated by some in power who can’t/won’t maintain a local body balance sheet – like you trust them, already?!) – to overseas corporates who will hike power prices disastrously to satisfy their shareholders.
Proceed carefully, OTAGO.
ASK QUESTIONS. RESEARCH. DO YOUR SUMS.
DON’T BE TOLD WHAT TO DO. ACT RESPONSIBLY FOR THE FUTURE PROSPERITY OF YOUR KITH AND KIN.
DO NOT PLACE FAITH IN OLD SPIN MAESTERS AND THEIR DEPUTIES.
We’ve seen them all before and have the new $1+ BILLION ‘invoice’ from Aurora Energy to prove it. Yes, we thought we had already paid over that amount in electricity and lines dues.
The suited ones bringing the clamour are looking after themselves – not US, not OUR COMMUNITY.
This is now a ransom.
The UGLY sister companies remain joined at the hip : Delta is Aurora Energy’s “preferred contractor”. And Steve is new, so don’t blame him! ….Really?
[propaganda – Aurora Energy]
After facing unrelenting pressure to up its game, Aurora Energy says it has stepped up to the challenge.
Sat, 27 May 2017
Dawn of a new Aurora era
By Vaughan Elder
Aurora chairman Steve Thompson said it had been under the “spotlight and the heat lamp” since accusations broke last October that it was endangering the public and workers by leaving its network, and in particular power poles, to deteriorate. That pressure turned ugly at times and workers had been verbally abused, including while out doing their supermarket shopping. Mr Thompson blamed the abuse on what he described as unfair criticism and media coverage. But Mr Thompson said in the face of adversity, Aurora and its sister company Delta had achieved a “hell of a lot” in a short space of time. The two companies were well on their way to splitting up in a divorce which Mr Thompson said would cost money in the short-term but reap huge benefits in the long-term. Aurora was also mid-way through an ambitious accelerated pole replacement programme and this week announced a $720million plan to upgrade its ageing network.
….Mr Thompson said its actions should help renew the public’s faith in both companies, but emphasised he believed that faith had been unfairly shaken by what he described as over-the-top criticism in the past seven months. He said safety concerns about the 2910 red-tagged poles across Dunedin, Central Otago and Queenstown Lakes had been overblown. At the same time, Delta and Aurora’s efforts to confront the problem, both before and after the story broke in October, had been under-reported, he said.
….Despite his anger at the way Aurora had been treated by critics and in the Otago Daily Times, he was under no illusion the network was in top shape, saying it was the second oldest network in New Zealand and acknowledged major work was needed to improve it in the next 10 years. But he would not be drawn on whether the situation had come about as a result of decades of underinvestment, which has been one of the main criticisms levelled at Aurora since October. He said he was not in a position to comment given he only started midway through last year.
CRITICAL ABHORRENCE FOR TOP CHAPS IN THE AURORA / DELTA / DCHL ‘EXECUTIVE’ (PAST AND PRESENT) WILL CONTINUE UNABATED IN THE PUBLIC SPHERE UNTIL THEY AND THEIR FRIENDS ARE OUSTED AND MADE ANSWERABLE TO HIGHER AUTHORITIES.
Otago people must busy themselves.
Time for formal inquiries. Time to REMODEL.
Related Post and Coments:
24.5.17 SCANDAL : Aurora Energy Ltd set to burden Otago ratepayers and residents with massive rates increases
█ For more, enter the terms *aurora*, delta*, *epic fraud*, *poles*, *healey* or *dchl* in the search box at right.
Posted by Elizabeth Kerr
This post is offered in the public interest.