Money for mates – Taxpayers’ Union uncovers Dunedin Mayor and Pete Hodgson

Former Labour Party dirty tactics coordinator Pete Hodgson and current Labour party representative on the Representation Commission has been stung by the Taxpayers Union in what looks to be a cash for mates scheme down in Dunedin. Pete’s apparently been doing some ‘lobbying’ for his best mate, fellow Labour Party comrade and Mayor Dave Cull.

This morning the Taxpayers’ Union went public with material concerning a payment (or payments) totalling $3,400 by the Dunedin City Council to former MP Pete Hodgson with no documentation or contract.

[…]

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

The Council has told us that:

  • Everything was verbal. The Council could not provide a single report, email, or even letter of engagement.
  • All of the contracts were negotiated verbally.
  • The contracts were negotiated by the Mayor and there is no documentation to explain the deal.

[…]

We think Dunedin ratepayers will be alarmed that their Council paid $3,400 apparently without so much as an invoice. Dunedin ratepayers should ask their Mayor:

  • What did Mr Hodgson do? Was this just expensive proof reading?
  • 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?
  • Is Mr Hodgson friends with the Mayor?
  • Why doesn’t Dunedin Council have the most basic internal controls, requiring amounts to be paid by invoice only?

I sh*t you not. The Council paid Pete Hodgson, a good mate of the Mayor’s (my Dunedin spies tell me that they are often seen drinking together), without so much as an invoice?

Was the money in a brown paper bag too?

Looks to be yet another reason we need an Independent Commission Against Corruption.

 


THANK YOU for being a subscriber. Because of you Whaleoil is going from strength to strength. It is a little known fact that Whaleoil subscribers are better in bed, good looking and highly intelligent. Sometimes all at once! Please Click Here Now to subscribe to an ad-free Whaleoil.

  • Blokeintakapuna

    …and once again – where there’s any hint of corruption – the New Zealand Labour Party are right in the midst of it all, somehow, someway.

    No wonder Russel is complaining about the caliber of his likely coalition partner.

    Edited to add: It was 2 very public corruption exposures for Labour last week – will they be able to improve on that this week?

  • Blokeintakapuna

    …and once again – where there’s any hint of corruption – the New Zealand Labour Party are right in the midst of it all, somehow, someway.

    No wonder Russel is complaining about the caliber of his likely coalition partner.

    Edited to add: It was 2 very public corruption exposures for Labour last week – will they be able to improve on that this week?

    • Adam Michaels

      Actually, didn’t Pete Hodgson pride himself in finding scandal, whilst an opposition MP? Ironic, isn’t it? Hypocritical, isn’t it?
      Oh, he belongs to the Labour Party, does he? Well, enough said!

    • corporate refugee

      Socialists are excellent at spending other people’s money.

  • Dr Wang

    Simple answer to your questions: what did Cull write on the receipts?

  • Dr Wang

    Simple answer to your questions: what did Cull write on the receipts?

    • Adam Michaels

      He wrote:”Show these to Len Brown, next time you are in Auckland.”

    • Time For Accountability

      Other way round.
      What was written on the cheque butts and how was this coded?

  • Adam Michaels

    Well the bugger had 21 years on the public teat in Parliament so it isn’t surprising that he can’t hold down a real job.
    Judith Collins- can she remove him from the Representation Committee?

  • Adam Michaels

    Well the bugger had 21 years on the public teat in Parliament so it isn’t surprising that he can’t hold down a real job.
    Judith Collins- can she remove him from the Representation Committee?

  • Adam Michaels

    Actually, didn’t Pete Hodgson pride himself in finding scandal, whilst an opposition MP? Ironic, isn’t it? Hypocritical, isn’t it?
    Oh, he belongs to the Labour Party, does he? Well, enough said!

  • MyTake

    Question: Does anyone know if there is a requirement for tendering this type of work by a Council? There are normally thresh holds in that type of thing in business and government sectors i.e. direct award under a certain limit to preferred suppliers, tender over a certain monetary thresh hold… BUT seriously no contract? No TOR? No agree deliverables? No agree scale of fees, No agreement on whether expenses like travel etc are reclaimable?
    As Mayor of the fair City of Dunedin Mr Cull should know a lot better than to engage a reputed friend to do council work with no formal engagement made in a transparent manner subject to oversight by the full council.
    Invoking the Southern Man handshake contract malarkey tells you Mr Cull knows he has stuffed up and is trying the “Move on nothing to be seen here” ruse to cover his tracks…

  • Dave_1924

    Question: Does anyone know if there is a requirement for tendering this type of work by a Council? There are normally thresh holds in that type of thing in business and government sectors i.e. direct award under a certain limit to preferred suppliers, tender over a certain monetary thresh hold… BUT seriously no contract? No TOR? No agree deliverables? No agree scale of fees, No agreement on whether expenses like travel etc are reclaimable?
    As Mayor of the fair City of Dunedin Mr Cull should know a lot better than to engage a reputed friend to do council work with no formal engagement made in a transparent manner subject to oversight by the full council.
    Invoking the Southern Man handshake contract malarkey tells you Mr Cull knows he has stuffed up and is trying the “Move on nothing to be seen here” ruse to cover his tracks…

    • Adam Michaels

      Good point there- I have my own suspicions about my local council and people making money from it.

      • Dave_1924

        First rule of engaging a consultant, contractor etc – agree the Terms of Engagement including rates, deliverables, requirement for Invoicing etc etc. If Mr Cull thinks a handshake and a nod and a wink is ok then there is a small problem in the DCC’s policies and procedures and its induction of councillors…. And there are always rumours floating about local council staff awarding contracts to their mates and their mates companies….. the rumour mill ticks over in the Hutt Valley for sure around kerbing, roading, paving contracts

        • Adam Michaels

          Transparency and accountability and good governance 101.

    • Time For Accountability

      Mr tennis ball ex Labour MP elected back to DCC.

      • To be fair, the tennis ball MP was the very dubious David Benson-Pope, not Hodgson.

        • Time For Accountability

          I know – point was he received favourable ODT coverage to help him from left wing editor.

  • Find me a trough, and I’ll show you lefties supping from it.

  • corporate refugee

    Socialists are excellent at spending other people’s money.

  • Adam Michaels

    Good point there- I have my own suspicions about my local council and people making money from it.

  • Find me a trough, and I’ll show you lefties supping from it.

    • Adam Michaels

      And we, poor sods, have to keep filling it up for the pricks.

      • Dead right Adam; those of us foolish enough to work, and pay taxes and rates carry a heavy burden.

        • Richard McGrath

          No trough is too large or deep for those parasites.

          • Don W

            I call them politapeworms.

        • Adam Michaels

          That is for sure!

  • Adam Michaels

    And we, poor sods, have to keep filling it up for the pricks.

  • Francis Heke

    While the country under National does well, the major cities with Labour mayors (eg: Auckland, Christchurch, Dunedin) become a joke. All are prime examples of how socialism works for the people…ha bloody ha!!!

  • Francis Heke

    While the country under National does well, the major cities with Labour mayors (eg: Auckland, Christchurch, Dunedin) become a joke. All are prime examples of how socialism works for the people…ha bloody ha!!!

    • TomTom

      DCC has always been a joke. Especially when you have idiots like Lee Vandervis always finding his way back onto the council every damn election. That guy has contributed nothing except a whole lot of bitching and whining.

    • Billythekid

      Spot on. We have Lean Dazzle now as a trougher and she’s signing up more socialists as public purse teat suckers daily. These fucking labourites know nothing else but leeching from the tax/ratepayers. Lean herself has been playing the sympathy card real hard in her personal neighborhood the east side, and has got all the “poor me’s” blaming the govt for the predicament they’re in because of a 7.1 national earthquake, followed by a 6.4 national earthquake.
      Lean being slightly derogatory for Liane !

  • Adam Michaels

    He wrote:”Show these to Len Brown, next time you are in Auckland.”

  • MyTake

    First rule of engaging a consultant, contractor etc – agree the Terms of Engagement including rates, deliverables, requirement for Invoicing etc etc. If Mr Cull thinks a handshake and a nod and a wink is ok then there is a small problem in the DCC’s policies and procedures and its induction of councillors…. And there are always rumours floating about local council staff awarding contracts to their mates and their mates companies….. the rumour mill ticks over in the Hutt Valley for sure around kerbing, roading, paving contracts

  • peterwn

    Where is the payment voucher and who signed it off? The Council should be able to disclose that.

    Even the French Government required appropriate financial authority to be obtained to finance the Rainbow Warrior bombing.

  • peterwn

    Where is the payment voucher and who signed it off? The Council should be able to disclose that.

    Even the French Government required appropriate financial authority to be obtained to finance the Rainbow Warrior bombing.

  • Dead right Adam; those of us foolish enough to work, and pay taxes and rates carry a heavy burden.

  • Pete

    I met Hodgson once, he is one of the most misserable gits I’ve ever met.

  • Pete

    I met Hodgson once, he is one of the most misserable gits I’ve ever met.

    • Richard McGrath

      Yes but I understand he can dance:


      Check out Hodgson at 0:38 into the clip.

  • Time For Accountability

    There used to be a man in a wheelchair who put agenda material in councilors pidgeon holes and also wrote council cheques in the days of cheques. I was tol he kept a notebook of what he thought were unusual payments in case any backfired on him.

    Perhaps someone might track him down.

    This blog (News media article) might help explain how the former chairman of the ODHB who was sacked after a $16.7M fraud found his way onto the council.

    The Chairman was Hodgeson’s fund raising chair and so Hodgeson appointed him to the ODHB board as chairman.
    Fraud Happens.
    Fraud kept Otago Daily Times going for years.
    Board and chairman never held to account and received massive favouritism from ODT.
    Sacked chairman not held to account for being part of board and insurance sub committee for increasing employee fraud insurance from $2m to $5m, 28 days before first document of $16.7 fraud was prepared. (Never paid by insurance company).
    Was that an attempt to profit from the fraud.
    Chairman was sacked by Ryall.
    Every local body Election run up – Sacked chairman gets favourable press and articles published.
    Sacked chairman gets elected back to ODHB and the DCC.
    Editor of ODT holds sacked chairman out to be of high integrity.
    ODT never explored lack of governance with chairman when fraud comitted under his watch.
    There was a news article the other day of another odd event in days when sacked chairman was still in power that could have been a second fraud.
    This embarrassment to sacked chairman drops from news very quickly.
    No analysis of chairman being there at that time.
    ODT facing complaint from another DCC councilor about biased reporting in lead up to Local Body elections.
    Editor linked to labour party contacts and close friendship.
    Hodgeson gets cash payout.

    Connect the dots.

    Hodgson – Sacked Chairman – ODHB – ODT editor – DCC elected member – ODHB elected member – Mayor ging cash payment to Hodgson.

    Whoops completed the circle.

  • Time For Accountability

    There used to be a man in a wheelchair who put agenda material in councilors pidgeon holes and also wrote council cheques in the days of cheques. I was tol he kept a notebook of what he thought were unusual payments in case any backfired on him.

    Perhaps someone might track him down.

    This blog (News media article) might help explain how the former chairman of the ODHB who was sacked after a $16.7M fraud found his way onto the council.

    The Chairman was Hodgeson’s fund raising chair and so Hodgeson appointed him to the ODHB board as chairman.
    Fraud Happens.
    Fraud kept Otago Daily Times going for years.
    Board and chairman never held to account and received massive favouritism from ODT.
    Sacked chairman not held to account for being part of board and insurance sub committee for increasing employee fraud insurance from $2m to $5m, 28 days before first document of $16.7 fraud was prepared. (Never paid by insurance company).
    Was that an attempt to profit from the fraud.
    Chairman was sacked by Ryall.
    Every local body Election run up – Sacked chairman gets favourable press and articles published.
    Sacked chairman gets elected back to ODHB and the DCC.
    Editor of ODT holds sacked chairman out to be of high integrity.
    ODT never explored lack of governance with chairman when fraud comitted under his watch.
    There was a news article the other day of another odd event in days when sacked chairman was still in power that could have been a second fraud.
    This embarrassment to sacked chairman drops from news very quickly.
    No analysis of chairman being there at that time.
    ODT facing complaint from another DCC councilor about biased reporting in lead up to Local Body elections.
    Editor linked to labour party contacts and close friendship.
    Hodgeson gets cash payout.

    Connect the dots.

    Hodgson – Sacked Chairman – ODHB – ODT editor – DCC elected member – ODHB elected member – Mayor ging cash payment to Hodgson.

    Whoops completed the circle.

    • Richard McGrath

      Dunedin was infested with Labourites in the 1980s when I was living there, so this news doesn’t surprise me. However I think the mayor in those days, Cliff Skeggs, wasn’t a man of the left, though things turned pear shaped when Sukhi Turner took over.

      • Time For Accountability

        Skeggs was the best mayor Dunedin ever had.

        Ran the show like a business and achieved great progress including the container port.

        • andrew carrot

          Run more like the Ukraine! If you weren’t one of Cliff’s friends the jobs dried up.

  • Time For Accountability

    Mr tennis ball ex Labour MP elected back to DCC.

  • jonno1

    Regardless of the relatively small amount, a tax invoice is required at the very least, plus a PO number and voucher signed off by someone with the requisite financial authority, otherwise the payment system wouldn’t cough up. No auditor (internal or external) would approve payment without these basics. A verbal agreement may be acceptable for low-value assignments, but it must always be confirmed by an e-mail at the very least, including the PO number to be quoted on the invoice. So how is this even possible?

  • jonno1

    Regardless of the relatively small amount, a tax invoice is required at the very least, plus a PO number and voucher signed off by someone with the requisite financial authority, otherwise the payment system wouldn’t cough up. No auditor (internal or external) would approve payment without these basics. A verbal agreement may be acceptable for low-value assignments, but it must always be confirmed by an e-mail at the very least, including the PO number to be quoted on the invoice. So how is this even possible?

    • Time For Accountability

      Don’t forget the get three quotes policy.

      • jonno1

        I don’t see that as necessary for minor expenditure, depending on policy and the approving officer’s financial authority.

        • Time For Accountability

          Find the 3 quotes for the stadium.

  • onelaw4all

    “What is documentation?, Precious!”

    /Smeagol

  • onelaw4all

    “What is documentation?, Precious!”

    /Smeagol

  • Richard McGrath

    Dunedin was infested with Labourites in the 1980s when I was living there, so this news doesn’t surprise me. However I think the mayor in those days, Cliff Skeggs, wasn’t a man of the left, though things turned pear shaped when Sukhi Turner took over.

  • To be fair, the tennis ball MP was the very dubious David Benson-Pope, not Hodgson.

  • Richard McGrath

    Yes but I understand he can dance:


    Check out Hodgson at 0:38 into the clip.

  • Richard McGrath

    No trough is too large or deep for those parasites.

  • caochladh

    Did they claim GST on this? If so, the IRD needs to investigate and I would lay odds if they did, they would find more than this one.

  • caochladh

    Did they claim GST on this? If so, the IRD needs to investigate and I would lay odds if they did, they would find more than this one.

  • Time For Accountability

    The real questions are did hodge son include it in his tax return, did the council claim GST, will Cull stand aside pending an inquiry.

    Just as well the DCC have a lady Sandy Graham who sides aside from the DCC and considers governance issues. We can await her report.

  • Time For Accountability

    The real questions are did hodge son include it in his tax return, did the council claim GST, will Cull stand aside pending an inquiry.

    Just as well the DCC have a lady Sandy Graham who sits aside from the DCC and considers governance issues. We can await her report.

  • Time For Accountability

    Don’t forget the get three quotes policy.

  • TomTom

    DCC has always been a joke. Especially when you have idiots like Lee Vandervis always finding his way back onto the council every damn election. That guy has contributed nothing except a whole lot of bitching and whining.

  • Time For Accountability

    Skaggs was the best mayor Dunedin ever had.

    Ran the show like a business and achieved great progress including the container port.

  • Time For Accountability

    I know – point was he received favourable ODT coverage to help him from left wing editor.

  • Don W

    I call them politapeworms.

  • Garbageman

    My god what is it with bloody mayors as far as im concerned they should only be a figurehead and never let near the purse strings Tim i appreciated your more and more as our mayor even though you are a proffesional trougher, at least you admit it

  • Garbageman

    My god what is it with bloody mayors as far as im concerned they should only be a figurehead and never let near the purse strings Tim i appreciated you more and more as our mayor even though you are a profesional trougher, at least you admit it

  • jonno1

    I don’t see that as necessary for minor expenditure, depending on policy and the approving officer’s financial authority.

  • Manfred

    Hodgson, former Labour Minister and former vet, obviously knows which side of the teat is buttered.

  • Manfred

    Hodgson, former Labour Minister and former vet, obviously knows which side of the teat is buttered.

  • Adam Michaels

    That is for sure!

  • Adam Michaels

    Transparency and accountability and good governance 101.

  • adsup

    Is this the sameHodgson who spent his last six in parliament trying to catch Key out doing something dodgy. I remember watching him trying to skewer Key and it was just embarrassing, I am sure Whale has the info in his archives.

  • adsup

    Is this the sameHodgson who spent his last six in parliament trying to catch Key out doing something dodgy. I remember watching him trying to skewer Key and it was just embarrassing, I am sure Whale has the info in his archives.

  • Ronnie Chow

    Corruption meets the almighty leveler .

    http://media.giphy.com/media/QnyX01TvMO4Sc/giphy.gif

  • Ronnie Chow

    Corruption meets the almighty leveler .

    http://media.giphy.com/media/QnyX01TvMO4Sc/giphy.gif

  • andrew carrot

    Run more like the Ukraine! If you weren’t one of Cliff’s friends the jobs dried up.

  • Billythekid

    Spot on. We have Lean Dazzle now as a trougher and she’s signing up more socialists as public purse teat suckers daily. These fucking labourites know nothing else but leeching from the tax/ratepayers. Lean herself has been playing the sympathy card real hard in her personal neighborhood the east side, and has got all the “poor me’s” blaming the govt for the predicament they’re in because of a 7.1 national earthquake, followed by a 6.4 national earthquake.
    Lean being slightly derogatory for Liane !

  • Time For Accountability

    Find the 3 quotes for the stadium.

  • Time For Accountability

    Other way round.
    What was written on the cheque butts and how was this coded?

48%