Tag Archives: KPMG

Audit NZ report of Horowhenua District Council highlights continuing concerns

Horowhenua District Council lost $1.86 million on the sale of the pensioner housing and 1.1 hectare of bare land to land and property dealer Willis Bond according to a recently released Audit NZ report.
The loss on the sale contradicts statements made by council’s chief executive David Clapperton in an April 5, 2017 Community Connections newsletter that, “There are..important criteria, including a realistic price offer.” A council Community Housing Transfer document also stated the aim was to “receive a fair market value on sale.”
The Audit NZ report for the Year ending 30 June 2017, presented to the February 18 Finance, Audit and Risk committee, noted “some of” Audit NZ’s “recommendations from last year’s reports to the council had been addressed, but there were still improvements required.”
The council was criticised on a number of fronts including presenting an incomplete set of draft accounts in “some areas” and “delays during the audit in receiving follow-up information especially in relation to [council owned land and property] revaluations and some service performance measure support” which impacted on “the timeliness and completion of audit work.”
Other concerns include a lack of controls over council’s expenditure system. “Although management has developed a report that may assist to mitigate the risks of unauthorised expenditure, without the one-up review there is still the risk of fraud and inefficiencies.”
“Recommendations have been made [by Audit NZ] in previous years to enhance the purchase order controls in the expenditure system to specifically require purchase orders to be approved on a one up basis. This would decrease the risk to the district council by providing a mechanism to prevent inappropriate expenditure being incurred.”
The Audit NZ report stated that previously manager’s were required to independently review or approve a purchase order but, “there is now no requirement for manager approval over the subsequent invoice.”
According to an updated council Delegations Register Mr Clapperton is authorised to spend up to $1 million on specified contracts for services.
In a ‘Review of Sensitive Expenditure Internal Audit’ 9 August 2017 report financial audit, tax, and advisory company KPMG said an alternative approach to the “one-up review” was required for the chief executive and the Mayor because “there is no more senior person.”
KPMG recommended, “the customer and community services group manager approve the chief executive’s sensitive expenditure and the chief executive approve the mayor’s sensitive spending and the mayor approve the customer and community service group manager’s sensitive spending.”
Although KPMG and Audit NZ have both expressed concerns about control over council spending the council told Audit NZ, “both last year and again this year, that there is no intention to following a one-up approval approach in the electronic purchase order system.”
“It is Council’s view that sufficient controls currently exist in the procurement process and the implementation of one up approval for purchase orders would neither be operationally efficient nor significantly lessen the risk.”
On conflict of interest matters the Audit NZ report stated, “more detail still needs to be included for handling of issues, breaches and their mitigations…for such areas as secondary employment.”
Audit NZ also found, “not all assets in the land and buildings asset class were revalued and there were assets that were revalued by the valuer that the District Council no longer owned.”
Audit NZ also found that, “Adjustments to the valuation information were difficult to follow and increased the audit time involved in reviewing the valuation work” and that, “The valuations assumed that useful lives of infrastructure assets had remained the same and no review was done against asset condition.”


Veronica Harrod is a qualified journalist with a Master of Communications specialising in traditional and new media content. Investigating and reporting on political, economic and legislative trends that negatively impact on the day to day lives of people is one of her main areas of interest. Lifestyle content she is interested in includes celebrating our own especially the tireless work community advocates do as civil citizens participating in democracy to keep those in power on their toes. In a media age dominated by a multi billion dollar communications and public relations industry paid to manipulate information to protect and advance the interests of the few over the many there have to be journalists who are impervious to the all pervasive influencial role they have over local and central government and corporate interests.

For more information about Veronica’s professional qualifications see her Facebook page.

The NZ 100 percent pure illusion – watch Key dismiss Dr Mike Joy’s evidence

See the stats! It really is 100 percent pure illusion! In our own district we’ve had no in stream biota survey since 2002 – and one year later we’re still waiting for an RDC estimate for when the next one will be – in spite of a 3 yearly consent requirement! Note in the header image, taken locally, the banks are also often slathered with glyphosate, a known, probable carcinogen.

“Of 112 monitored lakes, a 2010 Niwa study found 44% are eutrophic – so burdened by excess agricultural nutrients that they have become murky, smelly and inhospitable to many fish, reports Joy. Almost all (90%) our lowland wetlands – the “kidneys of our waterways” – have been destroyed. Three-quarters of our native freshwater fish are threatened with extinction (up from 20% in the early 1990s), yet only one – the grayling, which has been extinct for decades – has legal protection.”
Listener 26/11/15

unity1nz (Youtube)

Published on Aug 12, 2013

“Dr Mike Joy, NZ 100% Pure! The challenges of truth telling in a commercially driven world.

Note: Since the Key National Government came to power, the word ‘sustainable’ has been deleted from governmental and departmental vocabulary.

Meanwhile …

New Zealand is currently running at 162nd in our environmental performance out of 180 countries globally.

It is extremely difficult to access data on water quality in this country as it is ‘locked away’ from public scrutiny, even the Ministry for the Environment does not write it up for public consumption.

Researchers have to spend hours and days searching out any little snippet of information that is buried in Regional Council reports, because these reports too, are filed away from community analysis.

The reason for this impediment is because there is no Agency in this country that deals with such basic and important factual statistics and information and if this accumulated data was in the public domain, the Ministers involved would look so bad that the charade of ‘Clean Green NZ’ would be coherently shredded.

Yet, the latest statistics that are available for public information still go back to a 2004 report. Even though the 300 areas that are tested and sampled ‘to this day’ remain hidden from public view, and can not be accessed by scientists like Dr Mike Joy.

This vital information is being ‘censored by omission’ and the Ministry for the Environment and the 16 District Councils, only issue ‘feel good’ information on the better sites, (the upper high country where there is no population or industry) never the true story in the low land areas of farming, industry and population density. In essence, making a silk purse from a sows ear!

New Zealand has pristine highland lakes and rivers, which the tourist brochures revel in, but it is the low land lakes and rivers that are horrendously degraded in this country.

And it has been only in the last 20 years with the intensification of dairy herds that our water has really lost its purity. This due to the addition of far too many cows, as the population continues to increase.

11 humans are equal to one cow in their capacity to ingest and excrete. A conservative estimate is equal to 66 million people inhabiting NZ, the same population as the UK.

With the intensity of increasing cow numbers huge amounts of urine ends up in paddocks and in the process is changing the soil chemistry and seeping down into the water and into the greater catchment area, and this is not being factored into the pollution equation.

Adding to this, commercially manufactured urea is being spread on the land from urea plants as well as the use of more phosphorous to speed up plant growth, however a by-product of super phosphate is cadmium. NZ is now dangerously close to toxifying its soils, plant life and live stock with excess cadmium that ends up stored in the kidneys and liver of live stock, that if the animals are over 18 months of age – it is illegal to sell kidneys and liver for eating. (This is news to me!)

NOTE: New Zealand children are already exceeding the European levels of cadmium from our food chain

Scientists here in NZ like their counterparts worldwide are reluctant or prohibited from speaking out on environment or health concerns, for fear of losing their funding, or losing their job. They are under the hammer to keep their mouth firmly shut! Such is the power of the commercial imperative!

Treasury, which is the tail that wags the dog in this country is bloated with economists and Mike posits the idea that if we could have another department alongside it full of ecologists, we would strike a dynamic balance.

Mike says that what is happening in nature is that the fauna are now acting as the canary in the coal mine.

The tiny white bait (inanga) in our streams are being seen as the indicators of the health of our water ways and they are all being threatened, 4 out of 5 are now on the endangered list, same for fresh water crayfish and our eels, and the eel story Mike tells is near on bizzare in the extreme.

KPMG, one of the largest professional services companies on our planet, states in a new report that New Zealand has 5 years to clean up our clean green image, or we will lose it!”

Dr Mike Joy: The true story of New Zealand’s ecological status.


 

Related Article by the Listener 26/11/15 :

River stance

The Listener
By Rebecca Macfie


new_zealand_s_clean_green_image_a_mirage__1862307185
Photo credit: newzealand.com

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