Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Nobody wanted #EQNZ for Christmas

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  • Christopher Dempsey, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    Um, aren’t all employees including the CEO (but not councillors, who are elected, not employed) employed by the council as a corporate institution. The councillors (aka Council with a capital) directly appoint the CEO who then appoints the staff. While the councillors can’t directly dictate who is employed and on what terms, they can set general policy as to employment terms including salaries, can they not?

    Wearing said hat:

    All employees excluding the CEO is employed by a corporate Council. The CEO's contract is with the body of councillors (Council).

    The theory is that Councillors appoint a CEO and manage that contract, and it is the CEO's responsibility to hire people to carry out the duties and wishes of the Council, and it is the CEO that manages the employment contracts of the staff, as it is the CEO that hires them.

    This prevents interference by Councillors in how staff carry out their jobs. For example, one councillor I knew of used to hide in the bushes at parks then jump out at staff to castigate them on how they should do the gardening (true story). The current Council - CEO - Council staff structure means that councillors cannot interfere with staff. They can only interfere with the CEO.

    In practice, it means that while I receive excellent service from the staff, if I should need to complain about any aspect, I must direct my complaint to the CEO (as he is my only employee).

    Now Council - CEO relationships are political, as they are wont to be, so effectively a very good CEO plays off various factions in Council shrewdly (it's been known to happen), but must always be careful to remain on side with the majority of Council.

    From this perspective, the process of employing a CEO is not the value free exercise it should be (as appears to be the case in Christchurch), but that's not to insist that such employment process should be entirely value free; subjectivity has a part to play, as does personalities.

    Doffing said hat...

    Parnell / Tamaki-Auckland… • Since Sep 2008 • 642 posts Report Reply

  • Lilith __, in reply to Christopher Dempsey,

    Doffing said hat…

    You must be getting hat-hair, Christopher! ;-)
    But thanks for explaining, this is good to know.

    Dunedin • Since Jul 2010 • 3438 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz, in reply to Christopher Dempsey,

    Thanks for elucidating!

    But can councils set a pay policy for non-CEO staff, such as a wage freeze or floor?(as shareholders in a private company have the ability to).

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4438 posts Report Reply

  • Christopher Dempsey, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    But can councils set a pay policy for non-CEO staff, such as a wage freeze or floor?(as shareholders in a private company have the ability to).

    Popping elected rep hat on...

    No worries!

    In answer to your question, No, they can't. Non-CEO staff are employed by the CEO, and it is the CEO (along with senior management) that sets the pay policy for non-CEO staff.

    Council (being a body of elected members) can only set the conditions and pay for the single employee it has - the CEO.

    Council could theoretically make it a part of a CEO's performance conditions that Non-CEO staff pay be increased annually by 14%. The CEO could do such a thing, but equally is entitled to argue that such performance standard is unworkable. In reality, Council's very rarely interfere in non-CEO staffing arrangement and conditions.

    Doffing said hat...

    You must be getting hat-hair, Christopher! ;-)

    I must engage in such exercise to clearly indicate that the comments made while wearing my elected rep hat are clearly different from my own personal comments, and that generally, my comments made while wearing such hat relates to my function as an elected representative, at your service. :)

    If I do not distinguish between personal and public persona's then I run the risk of the less astute among us (there are some) conflating the two and thinking that World War Three has been launched, or something similar.

    Parnell / Tamaki-Auckland… • Since Sep 2008 • 642 posts Report Reply

  • Christopher Dempsey, in reply to Christopher Dempsey,

    the risk of the less astute among us (there are some)

    Apologies - I did not mean to cast aspirations upon you all. I was recalling the time when an interloper from a strange political party criticised my comments. He claimed that he was a regular PAS person. Though it must be said I haven't seen him around these parts lately.

    Parnell / Tamaki-Auckland… • Since Sep 2008 • 642 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Christopher Dempsey,

    a regular PAS person

    there are way more of us who don't post than who do

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16594 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    Thanks Christopher for explaining the law.

    I actually think it's a fairly undemocratic system (not up to City of London standards of feudalism, though). It should be up to a community (either by referendum or through elected reps) to decide how it wants to organise governance. The current system smacks of giving people the impression they have democratic control without actually trusting them to change things.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4438 posts Report Reply

  • Tamsin6,

    I've just read that the CCC won't be honouring a promise to pay for the burial of the earthquake victims. How completely shitty and petty.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/christchurch-earthquake-2011/6243608/Council-reneges-on-quake-victims-burial-offer

    London • Since Dec 2007 • 123 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to Tamsin6,

    Thanks for the heads up Tamsin6. The link seems to have moved in that inimitable Fairfax fashion, so once again, here. Tony Marryatt’s salary increase would appear to be sufficient to purchase around 200 burial plots.

    Elsewhere the Council has been attempting to offset their largesse by gouging Canterbury University over discounts for staff study. As the University’s Vice-Chancellor has enjoyed a similar level of remuneration hiking to Marryatt, with no link to how he actually benefits that institution, perhaps they could settle the issue with a jelly-wrestling bout.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 3424 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Tamsin6,

    Outrageous. What are they using the publicly-donated Mayoral Fund for again?

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16594 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Sacha,

    Ah, to pay the construction costs. No doubt at full market rates.

    The Christchurch Earthquake Mayoral Relief Fund has given $170,000 to help pay for the construction of the interment site at the cemetery.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16594 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    About $200m in donations to various funds, including the Mayoral one.

    The mayoral fund has received more than $7m and has spent $3.6m on "repairing or rebuilding damaged community buildings or structures".

    He tangata, etc.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16594 posts Report Reply

  • merc,

    "It would have been very easy to export those jobs out of Christchurch, if not the country." http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/christchurch-earthquake/6243660/Leases-defy-Christchurch-CBD-plan-Labour-says

    Go Gerry!

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to merc,

    More evidence that the CCCouncil’s Share An Idea was never anything more than expensive window-dressing, carried out in bad faith. Bob Parker has had the gall to cite Tony Marryatt’s supposed oversight of that farce as justification for his pay hike.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 3424 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Joe Wylie,

    the Council has been attempting to offset their largesse

    The cost of providing those plots free as promised seems to be about the same as a certain recent CEO payrise..

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16594 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Joe Wylie,

    To be fair, you saw what happened when the Council tried to contain suburban sprawl as the developers' preferred response to re-housing red-zoned residents - Brownlee simply overrode their district plan with a stroke of the pen.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16594 posts Report Reply

  • Roger Lacey, in reply to Sacha,

    About $200m in donations to various funds, including the Mayoral one.

    The mayoral fund has received more than $7m and has spent $3.6m on “repairing or rebuilding damaged community buildings or structures”.

    Funny that the Hagley Golf Club was one of the first beneficiaries. I wonder who rubber stamped that one? http://www.ccc.govt.nz/homeliving/civildefence/chchearthquake/MayoralReliefFund.aspx

    Whatakataka Bay Surf Club… • Since Apr 2008 • 118 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Roger Lacey,

    A clear head is worth any amount of someone else's money.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16594 posts Report Reply

  • Hebe, in reply to merc,

    "It would have been very easy to export those jobs out of Christchurch, if not the country."

    A blueprint for National's second term?

    Christchurch • Since May 2011 • 2600 posts Report Reply

  • merc, in reply to Hebe,

    A blueprint for National's second term?

    For me, antipathy reached.

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • Hebe, in reply to merc,

    For me, antipathy reached

    Sorry, don't understand your meaning.

    Christchurch • Since May 2011 • 2600 posts Report Reply

  • merc, in reply to Hebe,

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antipathy mainly due to these sort of backflips, http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/christchurch-earthquake/6243654/Parker-extremely-sorry-for-burial-offer-mistake
    My faith in our Govt. has finally reached it's nadir. As for National's second term, well, there have been so many vested interests exposed by their first term I suspect they are now too big to fail.

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • Hebe, in reply to merc,

    I get you. I'm more heading to resigned annoyance.

    Christchurch • Since May 2011 • 2600 posts Report Reply

  • merc, in reply to Hebe,

    Yes. For me the care for the dead is paramount. Nothing I have seen shows me that this Govt. isn't merely unfeeling, they are a savage menace.

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • Hebe, in reply to merc,

    They look like ice-cold technicians to me.

    Christchurch • Since May 2011 • 2600 posts Report Reply

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