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What is Going On?

Based on the response to “Time to Grow-Up & Front-Up”, it is probably time to bring the matter to a head by making a reference to the Auditor General. But we know from past experience that it is almost impossible to get any movement in that direction without proof of blatant malfeasance presented to them on a plate. There is always an absolute reluctance, if not refusal to take part in any investigation into ‘dis-function’, mismanagement, or Council failure to exercise its governance role in an appropriate manner.

Some of the generalisations that have been made in the course of commenting on this post from within Council are clear indications that something is seriously wrong with the manner in which our Council has been managed since the arrival of Hammond, but unfortunately, without specificity, it is futile to proceed with a submission to the AG.

There is long felt need for a local government ombudsman outside of the purview of the AG to enable complaints and concerns to be raised that do not meet the legal hurdle requiring AG intervention - unfortunately, the Government Ombudsman is overloaded, and has proven ineffective in the past when presented with complaints as non-specific as that arising in this case.  

The only matter that may cause concern relates to the stepping over the line in regard to the relationship with the local software companies. It seems to me that legal requirements, either in relation to the financial matters, contracting or staff relationships have almost certainly been breached. The action taken against Foster almost certainly confirms this to be the case. (please do not run the names Murray and Foster together in comments – it creates a lifelong Google burden, regardless of the level of due process – consider that Sore Rib!)

What we do know is that better software could have been bought over the counter in almost every situation for a fraction of the price paid to the local companies. Day’s role in all of this certainly needs investigation, along with Hammond’s oversight. And this does not gainsay the need for Foster’s apparently compromised roll to be explained. Underlying it all is some very strange relationships ammonHammond’s oversight. within religious groups in the town to which certain staff members belong that certainly appear to infringe every element of ‘best practice’ that Hammond is so keen to promote. Not that there is anything new about that.

It is incumbent on those who know the circumstances surrounding this whole imbroglio to bring them out into the open in order to provide a sound basis for referral. As long as the facts surrounding this matter remain bottled up within TCDC, others who were intimately involved with these contracts will be able to obscure, and eventually bury the matter. Just look at how effectively the Report on the Mercury Bay Sports Complex debacle was buried without reference to the AG.  

I do not know where the skeletons are buried – but someone clearly does, and until that person/s is prepared to reveal at least a few bones, it will be impossible to mount a case for review by the Auditor General, and those truly responsible will be well able to escape retribution. In other words, it is time for a ‘whistle-blower’ to step forward, though from all the reports of the witch-hunt currently under way within the Castle, there is little chance of that. Fear and loathing are hardly a great basis for effective management, but that is what TCDC is saddled with. 

Those who unleashed Leach in the first instance should be thinking very carefully about what they have wrought, and the long term consequences that we are now all now facing. 




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Reader Comments (1)

NZ is too smaller place, unless people can go and talk to the AG or the likes in confidence, or have the AG approach people in confidence, I think most people will be too concerned for their own well being and future. The risk to their livelihood and the future of their families is too much to gamble for most people. That is why true leaders are paid the sort of money they are paid, to act with integrity, honesty, passion, to innovate and to build one team.

A few people have had pay-outs with confidentiality agreements entered into as well, and they are not going to put those at risk.

As much as I would love to see everything come out, I doubt it will and if the AG does look into things I doubt that they will get to the real bottom of things, or if they do, they will moderate things a bit.

All you can do is leave, and like many who do not have the option they have to do what they can to survive. CE's come and go.

There are great examples of CE's in Local Government in NZ, they lead from the front, and take their crew with them. You do not have to be perfect to sail a steady ship, mistakes happen, but a steady ship sure helps you get to where you want to go faster in the long run. Many crazy skippers have sunk many ships over the years.

If it was not hurting so many people, I would laugh.

March 14, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterVeni, vidi, abiit

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