Value of Animal Control Team efforts

Karen Anderson made this Official Information request to Dunedin City Council

Response to this request is long overdue. By law Dunedin City Council should have responded by now (details and exceptions). You can complain to the Ombudsman.

From: Karen Anderson

Dear Dunedin City Council,

My preference is to receive the requested information by email.

The report of the Chairperson of the Dog Control Working Party states:
“The contribution of panellists is appreciated as it has shown the value of the efforts of the Animal Control team …”

It is not clear how contributions by panellists show the value of efforts by the Animal Control Team. We also note:
(a) There is no record of the performance of the Animal Control team being raised as an issue in relation to the Dog Control Policy and Bylaw in a way that would require it to require evaluation.
(b) Evaluation of the performance of the Animal Control team is not included in the terms of reference for the Dog Control Bylaw Working Party and does not appear as an agenda item for any meetings.
(c) The audio record of the Dog Control Bylaw Working Party meetings does not record the performance of the Animal Control team being discussed, or even any attempt to raise it for discussion.
(d) The convention is that staff performance is not a matter for elected representatives. This is confirmed by the DCC Code of Conduct 2016 which deals with relationships between elected members and staff, and further reinforced by Clause 5.2 which includes the statement concerns about employees should be raised with the chief executive.
(e) Evaluations of staff performance are regulated by employment law. This establishes a very clear process that could not be complied with by a working party, particularly one conducted along the lines the Dog Control Bylaw Working Party was conducted.

However I have been requested by members of the Dunedin Dog Bylaw Group to ask for the following information so the accuracy of the statement can be confirmed:
(a) An explanation of the process by which the performance of the Animal Control team was evaluated.
(b) All information collected or created in the course of that evaluation.
(c) All notes recording discussions of the information that led to the conclusion the performance effort has value.

I have also been asked to record this request is made with considerable distaste for at least the following reasons:
(a) The evaluation of the performance of the Animal Control team occurred without notice to members of the Working Party which denied them the opportunity to object, or take any other steps to prevent this investigation being performed in their name.
(b) The Working Party members have been unknowingly implicated with what appears to be a direct breach of the DCC Code of Conduct and significant breaches of employee rights. At no stage were Working Party members advised that would be the result of volunteering their time to the Working Party.
(c) It requires work to consider the employee performance evaluations and this work is not necessary or relevant, is inappropriately invasive and is highly unsavoury. At no stage were Working Party members advised their volunteered time would be expected to be used to perform work of this nature.

Yours faithfully,
Karen Anderson

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