PUBLIC WORKS ACT BULLYING 2

Following broken arrangements I sent 6 specific questions to Linda Holdaway, negotiator for partial purchases of properties in Te Atatu South on 9th October 2012. Despite not receiving answers I agreed again to an internal inspection of my property. Once again there was a breakdown in communication. I informed Ms Holdaway I would resume communication once she answered my six specific questions.

On 27th March 2013 I received an email from Ms Holdaway advising me “we are being requested to serve notice pursuant to Section 18 of the Public Works Act 1981 to formally invite you to sell the required land to Auckland Council.” I rang her but she still refused to answer my questions from 6 months earlier.

On 7th April I sent an email to David Rankin CEO Auckland Council Properties Limited asking two specific questions:
1. Does ACPL have statutory authority to issue such notices?
2. Were you aware the major delays in my negotiation process have not been of my making?

Having received no reply by 16th April I rang Sue Ross, David Rankin’s EA to be told Mr Rankin had other priorities.

On 17th April I complained to Hon Maurice Williamson (my previous post on this blog site). An hour later I received an undated letter from David Rankin.

Here it is:
Dear Gary,
Thank you for your email dated 7 April 2013. I have been briefed on the matters you have raised in your email and can now respond.

ACPL is managing the partial acquisition of your property on behalf of Auckland Transport as part of the Te Atatu Corridor Improvement Project. The negotiation requires agreement with you on the reinstatement work, financial compensation for the land purchase and the other terms of the acquisition agreement.

It appears that the main thrust of your email of 7 April relates to the circumstances around contact with ACPL’s appointed valuer in September 2012. In particular you are seeking an answer to six questions that you raised in an email to Linda Holdaway on 9 October 2012. Linda replied to the substance of the email that same day but for clarity I am happy to confirm ACPL’s views on the questions you have raised.
1. Did Alan Roberts tell you he had arranged to ring me in 3 weeks after 14 September to arrange a time for a valuation?
Yes, he advised ACPL that he had contacted you on 14 September to arrange access to the property and been asked to call back in 3 weeks to discuss access arrangements. He has informed us that this was because you had yet to obtain feedback from your solicitor to the reinstatement proposals.
2. Did you instruct him to do a roadside valuation?
Yes, we requested this in order to prepare the offer sent to you on 5 October for the partial acquisition of the land. This offer invited you to engage your own valuer in order to negotiate the compensation amount.
3. Why? What was the hurry?
Given the partial nature of the acquisition we considered that the valuation advice based on the limited access was a sufficient basis on which to make an offer for the land and commence negotiations. This was done to continue progress with the acquisition.
4. Are you aware that Alan did not ring me subsequent to 14 September?
Yes, with a ‘kerb side’ valuation completed, we anticipated that any site access could be arranged once you had obtained valuation advice and any points of difference identified.
5. Are you aware of the clause in the valuer’s report “The writer endeavoured to
arrange a property inspection in order to complete the valuation but the
landowner withheld his consent to do so?
Yes, this was addressed in our emails to you of 9 October 2012, 11 October
2012 and 9 November 2012.
6. Do you agree that this is a misrepresentation of the facts?
No

In terms of this acquisition, ACPL on behalf of Auckland Transport is keen to complete the terms of the purchase. I understand that Linda Holdaway has indicated that Auckland Transport is considering serving Section 18 notices under the Public Works Act 1981. Any such notices are served by Auckland Council and will be delivered by ACPL.

We would hope that affected owners can engage co-operatively to resolve land sales without the need for recourse to the more formal acquisition processes that this Act allows.

In terms of progress with our negotiations in respect of your property, I am advised that you have indicated in June 2012 your agreement to the rein statement works proposed, subject to your solicitor’s review. You have yet to communicate your final view on this matter. Further, we are not aware as to whether or not you have engaged a valuer. We have also not received any comments from either you or your solicitor on the terms of the legal agreement or the compensation amount.

Please advise if you need any further information from ACPL to enable you to progress this acquisition. We would be pleased to arrange a meeting with you (and your solicitor if you desire), as soon as possible, to discuss any issues that are proving a hindrance to the acquisition being resolved in a timely manner.

Yours sincerely,
David Rankin
Chief Executive
Auckland Council Property Ltd

I was not happy with aspects of this letter so rang Sue Ross to ask for the email address of the Board Chairman, Sir John Wells. She refused to give it to me. I sent her an email but that brought no response either. At 5 pm I posted the following letter to Sir John Wells enclosing a copy of David Rankin’s letter.

Dear Sir,

This undated letter from your CEO is unacceptable.

On 14th September 2012, Alan Roberts, valuer appointed by ACPL, rang me at 12.50 pm and asked to make an appointment to inspect my property. I asked him to ring back in three weeks and he agreed to do so. I was surprised to receive an offer on 5th October despite having heard nothing further from Mr Roberts. I obtained the valuer’s report and when I asked why he had not rung me as arranged he said he saw no point. I asked what he meant and he said he had been instructed by Linda Holdaway to do a roadside inspection. I saw two points – basic courtesy and good business practice to follow through on arrangements made. His valuer’s report indicated a roadside inspection had been made on 25th September. I was perturbed by a misrepresentation of the facts in his comment “The valuer endeavoured to arrange a property inspection in order to complete the valuation but the landholder withheld his consent to do so.”
I also challenged Linda Holdaway on the matter but she said she saw it more as a “summary of the facts” rather than a “misrepresentation”. I was not happy and on 9th October sent her 6 specific questions.

I will now go through the feeble attempt by your CEO to give specific answers to the questions.
1. When the valuer asked for access I reasonably assumed he meant access inside the dwelling. At no stage was I advised there would be a roadside inspection.
2. Why did Linda Holdaway request a roadside inspection when the valuer had already made arrangements to ring back in three weeks to arrange “access”?
3. If a roadside inspection was considered sufficient why was I rung by the valuer to arrange “access”?
4. Despite getting Mr Roberts to ring me to arrange access Linda Holdaway then ordered him to do a ‘kerb side’ valuation, without having the decency to tell me of a change in the arrangements.
5. The quoted statement was a misrepresentation of the facts.
6. Despite all that has happened the CEO denies that statement was a misrepresentation of the facts.

Furthermore, on 27th March Linda Holdaway sent me a threatening email saying “we are being requested to serve notice pursuant to Section 18 of the Public Works Act 1981 to formally invite you to sell the land required to Auckland Council.”
I did not believe ACPL had such statutory authority so asked Linda Holdaway who, had issued such instructions. She was not prepared to be specific.
I emailed the CEO and Board Chairman of Auckland Transport to ask who specifically, had issued such a request. On 5th April I received a reply from Owena Schuster, AT acknowledging a request had been made but from no one person as it was a “corporate decision”

On 7th April I sent an email to David Rankin asking two specific questions.
1. Does ACPL have statutory authority to issue such notices?
2. Were you aware the major delays in my negotiation process have not been of my making?
David Rankin has specifically dodged the first by saying “I understand Linda Holdaway has indicated that Auckland Transport is considering serving Section notices under the Public Works Act 1981.” NO Linda Holdaway said “we are being requested to serve notice…”
As to the second, Linda Holdaway’s refusal to answer 6 specific questions delayed the process by six months. My solicitor was advised some months ago of the situation.

The dogged denial of your CEO, despite all that has gone on, that Alan Roberts’ misrepresentative statement was not a “misrepresentation of the facts” does little to engender goodwill and repair damage from misstatements of the past.

When I rang Sue Ross to ask for your email address this afternoon, she refused to give it to me before hanging up on me. My request by email for your email address at 3.52 pm has likewise brought no response. I am therefore sending this letter by surface post.

Yours sincerely,

Gary Osborne

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1 Response to PUBLIC WORKS ACT BULLYING 2

  1. Rev1 says:

    David Rankin Is a Twit!!!
    I would like to buy his property from limited access at a price that my valuer suggests.
    HA Ha Ha

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