A complaint has been lodged with the Office of the
Auditor-general by Dunedin city councillor Lee Vandervis over
Central Otago subdivision purchases which soured and left the
council millions of dollars out of pocket.
DCC infrastructure company Delta bought part of a subdivision
in Luggate in July 2008, and another at Jacks Point, near
Queenstown, in May 2009, but their value has subsequently
been written down by millions of dollars.
In mid-October, the DCC announced a $9 million write-down of
Delta investments, including the subdivisions, which
contributed to the Dunedin City Holdings Ltd (DCHL) group of
companies' booking a $5 million loss for the year to June.
Cr Vandervis claims pre-purchase details of the Jacks Point
and Luggate subdivision acquisitions, plus details of City
Forests' mothballed wood-processing plant at Milburn, are
being withheld from him.
Cr Vandervis contacted the Otago Daily Times yesterday,
saying the Office of the Auditor-general had accepted his
complaint and it had been passed on to its investigation
unit, but he was yet to hear if the OAG would launch a full
"I have been trying to get information on who was responsible
for Jacks Point-Luggate property speculation for several
years now, but have been denied," Mr Vandervis said.
Cr Vandervis wants to view Delta and DCHL
conflict-of-interest registers and meeting minutes outlining
who voted in favour of buying the subdivisions.
He had approached directors and senior council staff with
regard to the issue, and expressed dissatisfaction with the
responses he had received, "none of which are credible", and
said his attempts to have questions answered had been
"The only people who responded claimed not to have taken part
[in deciding on any purchases]", Mr Vandervis said.
He had so far had a speedy response to his lodging of the
complaint and felt "reasonably encouraged" the OAG would
launch a formal investigation, he said.