My concern is for the reputational harm done by Dunedin City Council staff with the unprecedented misuse of the Councillor Code of Conduct process which was leaked smearing the likely candidate for the 2019 Council Mayoral election.
I actually went into the Council to advise of faulty meter signage that needed to be corrected and not to try and talk my way out of a $12 parking ticket. I had overpaid for parked time and the $12 was never demanded of me.
This misuse of the Code of Conduct process included: the unprecedented use of the Code by a staff member to be able to make a Code of Conduct complaint, withholding vital evidence [the video of alleged intimidation], withholding the actual complaint, and withholding witness statements which was totally unfair as I did not know much of what was complained about against me.
This High court decision effectively prevents any Councillor from being able to complain in-house about any Council staff member for fear of anonymous Code of Conduct retaliation by a staff member.
I am concerned at the amount of money Council have spent on this matter, but I had to act to protect my reputation and the Council could have agreed at any time to undergo a fair process including providing me with the complaint that would have allowed me to properly defend myself.
While the Council have legally won in the High Court, the position taken is morally indefensible because the Council knows I was not given full details of the complaint or a proper opportunity to respond to the complaint before the investigators’ report was provided to Council
Cr. Lee Vandervis