Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Questions To Be Answered By Dunedin City Council

MEDIA RELEASE

Questions To Be Answered About Payments By Dunedin City Council To Former MP

24 FEBRUARY 2014
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

The Taxpayers’ Union is questioning the internal controls at Dunedin City Council after the Union uncovered a $3,400 payment by the Council to former MP and cabinet minister Pete Hodgson, made with no documentation. Followinga media report that Mr Hodgson had been recruited by the Council for lobbying, the Taxpayers’ Union requested information about the services being provided by Mr Hodgson under the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act. The Council’s response has been made public today at www.taxpayers.org.nz.

According to the Council’s response, Mr Hodgson’s work consisted of “lobbying and advocating on behalf of the Council” and there is no supporting documentation.

“The Taxpayers’ Union asked the Council for the documentation relating to the payments," says union Executive Director, Jordan Williams. “They told us everything was verbal, and could not provide a single report, email, or even a letter of engagement."

"They claim that all of the contracts were negotiated verbally and there is no documentation to explain a deal between the Mayor and Mr Hodgson.” 

“We asked for copies of any work done by Mr Hodgson. All we got back were two letters by the Mayor on which Mr Hodgson apparently had input."

"It is alarming that $3,400 of ratepayer money was paid to Mr Hodgson and the Council can't even point us to an invoice. What did Mr Hodgson do? Was it just expensive proof reading? Is Mr Hodgson friends with the Mayor? If so, there is greater need for more light on this."

“Though it’s a small amount, it suggests that Dunedin City Council isn’t applying the most basic internal controls. What other government agency spends $3,400 without any documentation?”

"The Council’s response raises serious questions. Why was the Mayor negotiating this in the first place? Why verbally? Why is there absolutely no documentation for the arrangement, not even an email? No wonder this council has a history of financial troubles, they're running it like a cake stall.”

“Without an explanation from the Council, we are left wondering whether the Auditor-General should get involved," concludes Mr Williams.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Gordon Campbell: On The IOC’s Treatment Of Russian Sport, And Lone Wolf Terrorism

A blanket ban on Russian athletes would also have exposed the IOC to criticism that its treatment of Russia would have been marked contrast to its treatment say, of the track and field team from Kenya – a country about which the IOC has very similar doping concerns. More>>

ALSO:

Sounds Like A Plan: Auckland Council Receives Unitary Plan Recommendations

A key milestone in New Zealand planning history was reached today when the Independent Hearings Panel delivered the reports containing its recommendations on the Proposed Auckland Unitary Plan. More>>

ALSO:

National Park Expansion: Forests And Coast Of Kahurangi Protected

Five parcels of high value land totalling more than 890 hectares have been formally gazetted as part of the National Park. More>>

ALSO:

PPP Go-Ahead: SkyPath Gets Unanimous Support

Auckland’s SkyPath project has been given the go-ahead to be delivered through a public private partnership, after a unanimous decision at today’s Finance and Performance Committee. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Reserve Bank, The UN Shortlist, And Trump

Can there really be there any link between the US presidential elections and yesterday’s RBNZ signals on interest rates and the NZ dollar? Well, maybe. And it would be this: the improving US economy is reportedly putting a tailwind behind the US dollar, and rendering the actions of our Reserve Bank virtually irrelevant. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On What John Key Should Be Asking Joe Biden

No doubt, US Vice-President Joe Biden will be updating Prime Minister John Key on the chances of a TPP vote taking place in the ‘ lame duck’ session of Congress that’s held between the November’s election and the inauguration of a new President in January. More>>

ALSO:

Make NZ Make Again: Greens Will Establish A Minister For Manufacturing

The Green Party announced today that it will establish a Minister for Manufacturing in Cabinet, to better represent the interests of manufacturers and ensure they thrive. The Minister will be inside Cabinet and have responsibility for the long-term interests of the manufacturing sector. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news