Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: A storm in any port

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  • DeepRed, in reply to Sacha,

    Shareholding doesn’t equal control, unfortunately – and the supercity and earlier SOE and port law changes were set up that way deliberately.

    If there's one SOE that's usually worked well, it's NZ Post, which has retained the best of both public and private worlds with minimal state interference, and has still kept up with the times. So why can't other companies be run like them?

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4351 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Recommended listen: employment law professor discusses good faith, tells Radio NZ that the Judge had ordered POAL not to continue contracting out process - which the Port Chair has blithely said they are doing (10 mins, listening options).

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16739 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    Shareholding doesn't equal control, unfortunately

    For a company held by individuals, it does.

    If I own a chain of dairies, and hire a CEO to run them, I can still mandate that they don't sell tobacco, for instance, even though it makes them generate less money. As the sole shareholder, there's nobody else to object.

    What the government seem to have done with ACIL/POAL is to confiscate the rights of the Auckland community and grant them to the managers.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4463 posts Report Reply

  • DexterX, in reply to Steve Barnes,

    Especially when Auckland Council only holds 1000 shares and Auckland Council Investments Limited owns 156005192 shares.

    Auckland Council own all the shares (1,000 of them) in ACIL - ACIL own all the shares (156005192 of them) in POAL.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1198 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Interesting summary of recent proceedings here.

    We seriously have to be asking how much money is this dispute costing, now? The lockout is a really bizarre twist. Len Brown might be getting his A into G, though, finally.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8584 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    Control is transmitted through Directors. In this case, by law the shareholder did not get to appoint them.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16739 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to Sacha,

    Do you have any kind of link that shows what the nature of these organizations is, because you're describing a very unusual kind of company - it's hard to understand how you could even call people shareholders if, holding a majority of shares, they have no influence whatsoever over the company. I'm not saying you're wrong, but I'd like to understand exactly what having shares in the port actually means. Do you have any evidence that what DexterX said about the possibility of the shareholders calling a special meeting and firing the entire board of directors couldn't happen?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8584 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to BenWilson,

    Busy today, but the nature of the ownership/control arrangements linking the government, Auckland Transition Agency, Auckland Council, ACIL and POAL has been discussed elsewhere. Yes, they are unusual.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16739 posts Report Reply

  • DexterX, in reply to BenWilson,

    The directors of both ACIL & POAL were initially appointments made as part of the super city process.

    What the process has done, (setting up the Super City and appointing the Directorships) is to remove the control of both ACIL and POAL from the elected representatives.

    So when these appointments were initially made the deck has been stacked against the people of Auckland, the Auckland City Councillors and the unionised labour at the port.

    I feel it is time to imitate a mass letter writing campaign to the Directors of ACIL and POAL and also the Mayor expressing disgust at what is going on and the damage that is being done to the Auckland (and National) Economy by the behaviour of POAL

    Len Brown is too tarnished by his omission to act earlier; his input will amount to naught. He does not have the wit or conviction to solve the problem - he is a nowhere man.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1198 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to DexterX,

    and also the Mayor expressing disgust at what is going on and the damage that is being done to the Auckland (and National) Economy by the behaviour of POAL

    Went looking to email him a week ago to do just that. Went around in circles on the Council website and found a few councillors to write to but no way to email Len. One could send an email of complaint but when I tried that it came back with “thanking me for my email but they were unable to read it due to difficulties at present”. That was also a super shitty setup. If you find one for him put it up and I’ll certainly express my feelings.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6254 posts Report Reply

  • DexterX, in reply to Sofie Bribiesca,

    The POAL contact page is here:

    http://www.poal.co.nz/contact_us/

    They have a facebook page -
    http://www.facebook.com/AKLPort?ref=ts

    I attempted to post this to their wall.

    I feel it is time to initate a mass letter writing campaign to the Directors of ACIL and POAL and also the Mayor expressing disgust at what is going on and the damage that is being done to the Auckland (and National) Economy by the behaviour of POAL in the industrial dispute which has been n my view shameless.

    It didn't stick to the main page you can see it in the friend activity section - so I went down their page and posted it as a comment to a Len Brown post that he had made.

    As far as Mayor goes in relation to this dispute he has been casual and limp.

    So go and friend them and let them have your view.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1198 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to DexterX,

    Don't do friendbook.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6254 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes,

    Apparently it is not in our interest to know what our govt. thinks about all this...
    Transport Minister Brownlee won’t divulge government interest in Auckland port dispute

    The CTU wrote to the minister in February requesting, “all information and advice that has been prepared by the Ministry of Transport for the Minister of Transport since 1 January 2011.”

    “The reason we declined the request is because it is out of scope,” a spokesman for Brownlee. The minister is reviewing the files and may yet release them, he said.

    Brownlee declined to release any documents to the CTU under the OIA, sayint the release wasn’t in the public interest.

    I would call that arrogance.

    The wireless north ;-) • Since Dec 2006 • 4869 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Steve Barnes,

    I would call that arrogance

    I would call that a complaint to the Ombudsman.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2140 posts Report Reply

  • DexterX, in reply to nzlemming,

    I would call that arrogance

    I would call that, Mr Brownlee's response, part of the (massive) leap to the right (away from the centre) that the Nats are now driving towards - realising they effectively have a one seat margin they are going hard out making mayhem while they still can.

    What I can't get my head around is that overall the thrust of the policy the administration is pursuing, asset sales and all, isn't in what I would call in the best interests of NZ - in the same way that the direction that the POAL have embarked upon isn't .in the best interests of Auckland.

    How many of the POAL board are (undeclared perhaps) Actoidz or Right Leaning Fuzzy Fhinkers.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1198 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to DexterX,

    What I can't get my head around is that overall the thrust of the policy the administration is pursuing, asset sales and all, isn't in what I would call in the best interests of NZ

    What's difficult about the idea that it's in a narrow set of interests, those of the people in charge? That's been practically an ironclad rule of politics since animals became social.

    Yes, these things are obviously disastrous ideas for the country and city, but when you and practically everyone you know is a millionaire, anything that is good for bosses and investors is good for you. That's without any actual accusations of croneyism.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8584 posts Report Reply

  • DexterX, in reply to BenWilson,

    What's difficult about the idea that it's in a narrow set of interests, those of the people in charge?

    That is what I can't get my head around whether it is Labour or National - it is a narrow set of interests that rule and lobby the govt and continually get what they want - whoever has the treasury benches has scant concern for the good of the nation.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1198 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to DexterX,

    whoever has the treasury benches has scant concern for the good of the nation.

    I'm undecided if that's through malice or ignorance. The latter seems more likely to me - to not know that what you're doing is wrong because it doesn't hurt you enough. In that case you can sincerely think you are doing the right thing. The outcome is much the same either way, though.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8584 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed, in reply to BenWilson,

    I’m undecided if that’s through malice or ignorance. The latter seems more likely to me – to not know that what you’re doing is wrong because it doesn’t hurt you enough. In that case you can sincerely think you are doing the right thing. The outcome is much the same either way, though.

    And I suspect when they actually do know, they’ll probably keep on attacking the symptom – only this time with barbed wires, concrete walls, and burly guards, regardless of whether it’s to keep the ‘doubleplusbad’ people in or out.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4351 posts Report Reply

  • DexterX, in reply to BenWilson,

    I am concerned the role of Govt is being reduced to collecting the funding stream (Taxes) for the privileged private sector elite - through PPP - and that preferred bidders get to tie up that funding streams for 25 years and do not have to bid competitively – so that they set their own price and it is not the market deciding - a market that is not onto it – so to speak.

    http://www.national.org.nz/Article.aspx?articleId=38175

    I guess who will benefit the most will not be the tax payer - with say Learning Infrastructure Partners Limited - effectively Hawkins Construction and Morrison and Co.are in clover or shortly to be.

    There are Social Infrastructure Assets and Economic Infrastructure Assets that are taxpayer owned (or funded) and they will all – in good time - be going to be up for grabs.

    The more the country gets tied up in PPP and the Asset Sale Mixed Ownership Model process (division of state assets) there will be less social benefit/welfare/education/health a greater level of personal taxation against a low wage level fro most - the standard of living is about to begin to plummet - but not from what is presently being advanced as the cause.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1198 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed,

    And getting back on topic, mediation talks have broken down... again. Looks like it's up to the Employment Court. I'd say it's looking more and more like the Aussie dispute in 1998.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4351 posts Report Reply

  • DexterX, in reply to DeepRed,

    From the stuff article:

    The latest impasse comes after the workers were locked out last week due to health and safety concerns.

    In a press release, a Ports of Auckland spokeswoman said it is unrealistic for union members to retain to work until all health and safety requirements are met.

    The Ports of Auckland Board must sign off on any plan as the health and safety of workers ultimately rests with them.

    The POAL are just deficating on everyone - it is nonsense H& S is something they will already have done to a degree that it would not be a barrier for a return to work.

    If Health and Safety is a driver then why are they wanting people to work 12 hour shifts as contractors.

    They are wanting more and more people to leave the union by dragging the matter out by any means posssible fair or most foul.

    They are also not concerned about damamge to the economy or small business - they are above it all as it appears is the Mayor.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1198 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed, in reply to DexterX,

    The POAL are just deficating on everyone – it is nonsense H& S is something they will already have done to a degree that it would not be a barrier for a return to work.

    PoAL can save their face or their arse - but they can't save both at once.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4351 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes,

    I was talking to an old friend the other day, a lawyer who used to do a lot of work for the Maritime Union, he told me that the Union is as good as finished, the H&S stance taken by the company may be dishonest, deceptive and total shit but it is a get out of jail free card, it is using the aims of the Union against them.
    I don't think even I can be heartless enough to hope there is a tragic outcome, a serious injury or death, to expose the disingenuity of the scum that passes for management at the Ports of Auckland.

    The wireless north ;-) • Since Dec 2006 • 4869 posts Report Reply

  • Islander, in reply to DeepRed,

    eply to DexterX, about an hour ago Email Web Twitter
    The POAL are just deficating on everyone

    I was trying to work out whether you making a strange double pun - deficit + defecate = I guess that's still a possibility...

    Steve B - the Union wont be finished until the overseas supporting unions are also finished - and I dont think that is likely anytime soon-

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

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