Stadium “has us until it is paid for”

The Otago Daily Times declined to publish this letter from Dunedin City Councillor, Lee Vandervis: 

We do not “have it” – it has us till it is paid for. In the meantime the lenders have it and us by the debt short and curlies.
It is not “an asset” but a rates liability. We are not having major artists, they occasionally have us, as in the estimated $6 million Elton took back overseas for his one-off no-charge use of the Stadium. The mostly empty stadium has other events, mostly rugby, which are heavily subsidised by rates bail-outs and differential, Community Access fund, Event Attraction fund, and millions in interest, staff and maintenance payments. The DCC Stadium Review Committee was stacked with Stadium Management who recently succeeded in again increasing funding for their already wasteful operational spending.
Everything can never “fall into place”, until Stadium operational costs are reduced to the bare minimum required for the rare large events that only the Stadium can host, now that Carisbrook has been levelled

Hat-tip:  What if? Dunedin…

Update: The ODT changed their mind and later published this letter.

Free Stadium Not Fair To Ratepayers

In today’s ODT:
A year after charging $12 a ticket at the venue last year, admission will be free this season after Southern United gained a community funding grant through the Dunedin City Council.

Surely $12 is little enough to contribute to the costs of the Stadium compared to the gym or the movies, and a fraction of the price of an Arts event.

With the Stadium costing ratepayers over $20 million per year, the Dunedin City Council has a responsibility to maximise revenue and ensure all Stadium users pay an appropriate price for it’s use.