Banks supporting Unite Union – or do they?

Matt Mccarten’s Unite Union has finally filed their overdue accounts with the registrar…except they haven’t. I have engaged the Owl for a once over lightly so as to not impinge on his holiday with the kids.

There are serious questions as to whether or not Unite union should actually be a union given their poor adherence to the law. Their repeated failure to meet statutory requirements should preclude them from acting as a union. If I was McDonalds or Burger King or SkyCity I’d be applying to have them struck off the register.

Observation by the Owl

Unite Union has filed their 2011 and 2012 Accounts – seriously late and after some enormous pressure by all involved.

There is a loss which is then matched by a surplus. The Union is insolvent and should be closed down except there is a major issue with the accounts. They are not audited therefore there is zero qualification of its viability as a going concern.

There is a note to the accounts which says that the overdraft is secured by a private residency. (Note 4).


Whaleoil has checked the property (pdf of title transactions) in question and can not seen any lien or caveat over the property. There is a mortgage to ASB Bank but that dates back to 2001. Furthermore the bank or financier for the security of the overdraft is not named in the accounts.

Observation by the Owl

Unite Union constitution states these accounts should be audited. Unless there is an auditors statement to verify this security on behalf of its members then there are more questions than answers.

If I was the property owner I would definately be making sure that 7,000 union members owe me if the union goes tits up.

The union is not meeting statutory requirements as required by law to maintain its status as a union. It is not alone in this regard. A proper investigations of unions is required.


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  • Alloytoo

    One wonders why the greens aren’t clamoring for an inquiry into this matter? (not really)

    • mallard the duck

      the greens want a taxpayer bailout!!!

  • Euan Ross-Taylor

    Maybe after next years election when Labour collapses,, then National will do a union cleanup in the interest of workers and the majority of voters. They will have a mandate to unplug Labours’ lifeline.

    • blokeintakapuna

      They have a mandate now – to protect the funds of 7000 or so union members from unscrupulous, dodgy behaviours hidden behind obfuscating financials.
      Surely the authorities see the smoke? and smell the tainted wafting stench of corruption? Why the lethargy / inaction / condoning by lack of over-sight?
      Maybe what NZ Inc “needs” is for a union like Unite to implode – wiping out the funds of these 7000 or so individuals these unions take advantage of – kind of like when all the Finance Companies imploded – and only then, when the lives of these less fortunate individuals have been completely ruined by the organisations they pay a weekly fee to – only then, will then SFO & AG pull up trousers from their ankles and start in depth investigations.
      If millions of cash and assets were to disappear and reappear from a NZX listed company accounts – or even be a few month’s late – there would be immediate and in depth investigations surrounding all of those dodgy finances.
      Maybe the Labour Party are using their political muscle to stall investigations? Because I don’t know of a single fire-fighter that would NOT look for a fire, when they come across plenty of smoke!

      • Euan Ross-Taylor

        I totally agree that any Govt. has a mandate to ensure adherence to the law, just saying after the next election there will be fewer lefties screaming so maybe the Govt, wont just stop at clipping the unions toenails, but attend to the gangrene as well :-)

  • Sir Cullen’s Sidekick

    As long as you guys can remember the fact that Vomit McCarten is an auditor of the highest calibre……

    • kohibruce

      Is that the same Vomit McCarten who has the middle name Malfeasance?

      • Sir Cullen’s Sidekick

        Yes sir. Same guy.

  • Phar Lap

    Would be interesting to read if McCarten had paid the massive overdue taxes incurred by Unite Union to IRD.

    • Time For Accountability

      The main point being the accounts should have disclosed serious issues such at that. There would be interest and penalties built up as an unusual item and these have not been identified.

      Matt – this is all a bit dodgy mate.

  • Come now they MUST be fine financially, after all they contribute towards Martyn’s salary. You know… Martyn, that guy who gets paid a nice fat salary for being ‘ Editor ‘ of a blog filled with contributions from left leaning writers who do it all for FREE.

    He gets the money and they do all the work. Brilliant!

  • Time For Accountability

    The Officers have no alternative than to liquidate.
    They are trading whilst knowing they are insolvent and have been so for some time.

    The officers are in breach of the insolvency act.

    Owl is correct:
    The accounts have no evidence of being audited.
    They cannot have been approved each year at the AGM

    The audit aspect is murkier than just the 2011 and 2012 accounts:-

    2006 Whereby someone who does not appear to be a proper auditor
    prepares the accounts and then gives some form of a home grown audit
    report. God help us.

    There is a liability called accrued expenses in the balance sheet that looks dodgy indeed.

    Matt – you have more problems than just credibility.
    File proper audited accounts for all years.

  • Time For Accountability

    The quickest way to tidy up unions is:

    Have the IRD audit all unions and like organizations to ensure all benefits to their employees are subject to FBT.

    That sweep should include any union money used to promote people associated with the Unions when they stand for any political role.

    Tax any contributions they make to political parties regardless of their color.

    This places unions on a similar footing to any business and any person standing for political office.

    I have no doubt that Unions are simply there for the benefit of the executive rather than members. No different than many other organizations

    • guest

      This needs expanding send to wo he will post

  • Mediaan

    If they are paying for a house mortgage at 14%, we need to know to whom they are paying it. Sweet deal for some lender. Wasn’t the ASB Bank, I bet. Who is he?