Thursday, 4 June 2015

Pen and Watercolour Sketch of Birchington Today from DriftWood Café, more on the Manston cpo situation and a ramble

This painting of Birchington didn’t get finished as I had to get back to Ramsgate for School’s Out, ‘fraid to say I rushed at it a bit at the end.

There is a letter from PwC to The DfT doing the rounds at the moment, it’s in the form of a pdf file so a picture of the beginning and an ocr of the text underneath, as I don’t know how to post pdfs on social media apart from leaving people to download the file.  

Dpartment for Transport
Great Minster House
33 Horseferry Road
London  SW1P 4DR

For the attention of **** and ***
26 March 2015
Dear**** and****

Manston Airport Review

Pricewaterhouse Coopers LLP (“PwC” or “we”) is pleased to have been appointed as the independent consultant to undertake a review of the documents supplied by Thanet District Council (“TDC”) and RiverOak Investment Corp LLC (“RiverOak”) to the Department for Transport (“DfT” or “you”).

We confirm that we have this week received the relevant documents relating to the Council’s decision not to take forward a Compulsory Purchase Order of the Manston Airport site with RiverOak as the indemnity  partner.  These  documents  cover  the  period  from  4  May  2014  to  25  February  2015  and include financial information provided by RiverOak.

We have agreed a work plan with you and commenced our work. The objective is to provide DfT with a full report  by Friday  22 May 2015. The report will address our scope of work and provide DfT with specific advice in relation to:

Any key considerations that TDC could have taken into account at the time, based on a review of the information provided to TDC (at the time).

Further  key  considerations  that  TDC  may  wish to  take into  account  in any  further CPO  review, based on a review of the information provided by RiverOak to DfT.

On the basis of the findings from the above, PwC’s advice on what, if any, further work TDC may wish to undertake to help strengthen findings from any future due diligence exercise.

However,  PwC  is  not  expected  to  provide  DfT  with  a  view  on  whether  TDC’s  due  diligence  was sufficient, nor on the reasonableness or otherwise of TDC’s conclusions.

At this early stage, we can report that we have: Met  with DfT for  an  inception meeting  where  we  finalised  scope, confirmed  our work plan  and reporting;
Received dossiers of documents from DfT encompassing the relevant documents from TDC and RiverOak; and Commenced our initial review of the above documents.

Our next actions will involve:
Preparing a timeline of the process between, and inclusive of, the document dates outlined above to assist our review;
Identifying any areas of difference in the dossiers of TDC and RiverOak, which you have provided to us;
Identifying documents, such as RiverOak’s CPO indemnity offer, financial information and other relevant decision documents that may require specific review by subject matter experts;
Understanding  RiverOak’s  readiness  to  commit  funding  to  promote  the  CPO  process,  upon signing of an agreement with TDC; and
Understanding TDC’s due diligence of RiverOak’s financial status, availability of funding to cover CPO costs and business plan.

We will remain in close contact with DfT, and we will bring to your attention any questions in relation to documents received, including any information gaps which may impact our work.

What it actually means is open to interpretation I guess and will have a go later if I get time.  

I guess the big revelation to come from this letter is something along the lines of; I think most people thought that PwC would either say that TDC had got it wrong and should pursue a cpo, or that TDC had acted correctly and RiverOak were an unsuitable indemnity partner.

Although the PwC letter is framed in legal language it does seem to be saying something else is what they are doing.   

1 comment:

  1. The political games surrounding Manston continue. The PwC report was built up to be the answer to everything. Roger Gale and John Hayes made out that it was a review of TDC's decision and implied that it was going to tell us whether Riveroak was a suitable indemnity partner. Everybody has been waiting for this report. It was delivered to the DfT over two weeks ago, but TDC hasn't been provided with a copy. No doubt the civil servants are agonising over how they will present such a meaningless load of tripe. Meanwhile, Sir Roger, who caused the report to be commissioned is doing his best to avoid talking about it, and is busy muck-stirring to try to deflect attention away from it. I just watched him on the South-East news blustering about ownership of the airport (that old chestnut). Apparently, some pro-airport supporters got hold of some old accounts for Wynyard Park. They misinterpreted the accounts because they don't understand how companies routinely borrow money and mortage assets to raise funds for future investment. They passed their wrong-headed findings to Newsroom South-East, who didn't understand them either. It was left to Cartner and Musgrave's spokesman to give the true picture, which is that their company does have some debts, of around £3 million, but that they have assets in excess of £150 million. In other words, they are running a pretty healthy and growing business.


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