Council Refutes Allegations of Fraud and Incompetence

27/05/2016 2:30 p.m.

​Ashburton District Council has received criticism and was subjected to false accusations about the campervan dump station site in town at yesterday's Council meeting. These untrue claims have been reported in the May 27 issue of the Ashburton Guardian.

"Allegations made by Jamie Dalzell about Council being fraudulent are baseless in fact, and inflammatory in nature" says Ashburton District Council Chief Executive Andrew Dalziel. "Council followed clear processes and every report and decision made about this particular facility have been in the public forum" he added. 

During last year's Long Term Plan consultation, a request was made by the NZ Motor Caravan Association to consider putting another campervan dump station within the town boundaries. Council responded by making budget provision for upgrading an existing Tinwald facility or providing a new site.

In September last year Council decided that rather than upgrade the existing facility which had some logistical and safety issues around motorhomes turning around near a playground, the money was better spent providing an additional site in town more suitable for the intended users. It also decided to decommission the Tinwald Dump site. The East Street site was identified at that time. 

"Council officers provided a report to Council when it became evident that the costs of a new facility would be more than what had been allocated in the LTP for an upgrade of the Tinwald site. As part of the approval of the additional funds, approval was also granted to use publicly tendered rates for this type of work for this new facility" says
Mr Dalziel.

"Council has followed its procurement policy and the decision making for all of this has occurred in public meetings, with minutes held on Council's public website" says Mr Dalziel. "Although Council can understand the frustration from the Coronation Park owner that a public campervan dump facility would be available within the township, the allegations of fraud and impropriety have no substance," he said. 

"If there was any evidence at all of misappropriation, misrepresentation, corruption or wrongdoing Council would call in an independent investigator or the police," he added.

Page reviewed: 27 May 2016 3:00pm