Newsline 303 - 19 July 2013

Friday 19 July 2013

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PM Praises Progress of Tasman’s Cycle Trail        

Stage one of Tasman’s Great Taste Trail has now been officially completed – and John Key took time to come for a visit and give it his seal of approval. He also hinted that more funding could be made available from Government to ensure the full 175km loop is completed to a standard befitting its importance as a local resource and international attraction.

Stage one of the cycle trail runs from Nelson, through Richmond and out to Mapua and Wakefield. The last section to be completed was around the Waimea Estuary, where boardwalks enable users to enjoy the coastal scenery without having to venture on to Lower Queen Street. This means cyclists and walkers can get all the way from Richmond to Rabbit Island on a purpose built off-road trail.

Tasman’s Great Taste Trail was chosen by the Government as one of its Great Rides, along with 18 other cycle trails around New Zealand. Funding was received from the Government and Tasman District Council with additional funding being generated by the Nelson Tasman Cycle Trails Trust (NTCTT).

“Around the country the Great Rides are unlocking opportunities for tourists and  New Zealanders to see New Zealand from  a different perspective”, said John Key,  who is also Minister of Tourism.

The Government has provided $2.4 million towards the $3.18m cost of the first stage of Tasman’s Great Taste Trail, and is putting a further $150,000 towards the trail’s continued development this year. It is estimated that once the entire 175km TGTT is completed it will attract 28,000 visitors per year and add $20m to the local economy.

The construction, marketing and maintenance of the cycle trail is being managed by the NTCTT in partnership with Tasman District Council. “The construction has involved over 20 contractors so far and a host of volunteer groups and individuals who have given an amazing amount of their time and resources. It’s been a real team effort and it’s great to have the Prime Minister here today to help  us celebrate”, said NTCTT Chair Gill Wratt.

“The Trust is now creating stage two of the trail, which will take riders from Mapua through Tasman to Motueka and on to Kaiteriteri via the Kaiteriteri Mountain Bike Park. This section has a number of logistical challenges that we are working closely with stakeholders on. Although Council has allocated funds to the continued development of the trail there is still a budget shortfall that the Trust and our partners are working hard  to overcome”, continued Gill Wratt.

For more information on cycle trails in Tasman go to www.tasman.govt.nz and search ‘cycling’.

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Message from the CEO                               

The approval and adoption of the 2013/14 Annual Plan, which came into force  on 1 July 2013, marks the end of that very important process for Council,  and the start of the build up to the 2013 Local Authority Elections, which take place on 12 October 2013.

We are very fortunate to live in a democratic society that enables us to choose who represents us. Local government impacts your life on a daily basis and your participation in the elections in October lets you have your say on the individuals that will represent you and your District for the next three years.

To ensure you have the information you need to make an informed choice the Council is producing a Pre-election Report. The report outlines the Council’s plans for the next three years and beyond, financial information for the last three years and a forecast for the next four years. The document also includes a summary of the major projects either underway or proposed to be undertaken by Council over the next three years.

The Pre-election Report will be of value to aspiring candidates as they assess the role of Councillor and whether they wish to stand. For voters it is information that, when read with the candidate information booklet received with your voting papers, will help inform your choice when voting.

The Pre-election Report will be available from the end of July 2013 from Council’s Office, Service Centres and Libraries and will also be available to download from Council’s website.

Lindsay McKenzie, CEO.

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New Site for Subsidised TV Recycling                               

Have you got an old TV that you want  to get rid of? If you have then there are three Resource Recovery Centres in Tasman where you can take it – Mairiri, Takaka and now Richmond.

For a subsidised price of just $5, as part of the TV TakeBack programme, you can dispose of your old non-digital compatible TV and have it recycled. The subsidised price will apply until 20 August 2013, after which time it will likely rise to over $25, which represents the true cost of recycling a TV.

TVs contain components such as copper and steel, which can be recycled locally, or sent overseas to specialist recycling facilities, as well as hazardous materials such as lead that can be harmful to the environment and shouldn’t be thrown away.

TV TakeBack is a nationwide Government programme, funded by the Waste Minimisation Fund, to support the recycling of TVs instead of them being dumped in landfills. It is timed to coincide with New Zealand going digital.

For more information on Council’s Resource Recovery Centres go to  www.tasman.govt.nz and search ‘recycling’.

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Tasman’s Wood Burner Rules                               

Recent media coverage about wood burner controls has highlighted the tension that exists between keeping homes warm and dry and also making sure our air quality does not compromise people’s health. Tasman District Council is managing both these issues in the Richmond Airshed.

The Council adopted an air quality strategy in 2007 to help address the air quality issues in Richmond. Air quality has been greatly improved since then with the maximum exceedance decreasing from over 110ug/m3 to below 70ug/m3 (these figures are a measure of how many small particles there are in the air). The number of exceedances is also significantly lower, going from more than 50 exceedances in some previous years to 16 last year.

The Council’s strategy depends on several different measures, each of which won’t be successful on its own, but when taken together are providing good results so far.

First of all, Council sets out to prevent any new contributions to the pollution by preventing the installation of wood burners where one didn’t previously exist. Secondly, the strategy recognises that the amount of smoke being discharged from a wood burner can be affected by how the burner is being operated, whether it is an old one or a modern clean air one.

All wood burners can be operated to minimise the amount of smoke being produced - things like using dry, seasoned wood and ensuring adequate air flow when the burner is operating. However, the modern clean air wood burner also uses improved technology to ensure it burns fuel efficiently and with reduced emissions. Clean air burners are tested to make sure they can comply with the new standards for emissions and efficiency.

The only rule the Council enforces about requiring wood burner upgrades is where a house has changed ownership. The Council considers that the need to upgrade to a clean air burner can be accounted for in the purchase price of the house. The rule is written so that either the purchaser or the vendor can upgrade. It enables the new owner to choose the home heating method they think is best for them.

The Council also encourages the voluntary upgrade of older model wood burners to clean air burners or some other form of clean heat. Some of the wood burners in Richmond are very old. They may no longer be operating as efficiently as they should and contribute more than a fair share of smoke.

As well as trying to manage the pollution problem in a way that avoids financial burdens on ratepayers, the Council also encourages and supports improvements to home insulation through its Warm Tasman programme and its support of New Zealand wide EnergySmart campaigns run by EECA.

Good insulation reduces heat loss and moisture levels in homes making houses warmer and healthier to live in. It also means less heat is lost overnight and reduces the temptation to “damp down”  a wood burner.

Any wood burner installation or upgrade requires a building permit. Most existing woodburners would be compliant with the Building Act requirements, even though they are not clean air wood burners.

If you are buying a house in Richmond, information about the wood burner can be obtained through a LIM application from Council, or you can ask to view the property file. If you are not sure if the burner is a clean air burner, information is available from the MfE website  www.mfe.govt.nz/laws/standards/woodburners/ or contact the wood burner manufacturer directly. 

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Dog Registration – Final Reminder                               

Dog registration expired on 30 June 2013. If you have a dog aged three months or older you have to register it before 31 July 2013. The fee for dogs that have not been registered by 1 August 2013 will increase by 50% on top of the standard urban or rural registration fee.

Registration forms for all dogs currently on Council’s database were posted at the end of May 2013. If you have moved from another area, or have changed address within the Tasman area, and did not receive a registration form, please immediately contact Council on Ph. 03 543 8400 to update your details so that a form can be sent to you.

As Infringement Notices will be served on owners who fail to register their dogs, it is essential that your invoice goes to the correct address. Any change of detail, whether it is a change of dog owner or address, must be made in writing.

Registration update forms are available from all Council Service Centres, or by emailing dogcontrol@tasman.govt.nz, or can be downloaded from Council’s website.

Dog Register Update Notification Form

All current fees can also be found on the Council’s website.

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Kindergarten Achieves Green Gold Status                               

Greenwood Street Kindergarten in Motueka has been working hard to achieve its Enviroschools Green Gold status and this month was presented with its certificate.

The Enviroschools Awards promote five guiding principles and four key areas of school life. The guiding principles are: Sustainable Communities, Empowered Students, Maori Perspectives, Learning for Sustainability and Respect for Diversity of People and Cultures.

The four key areas of school life that have an effect on sustainability and student learning are: Place/Wahi (physical surroundings), Practices/Tikanga (operational practices), Programmes/Kaupapa Ako (living curriculum) and People and Participation/Tangata (organisational management).

There are four levels of award, Bronze, Silver, Green Gold and Beyond Green Gold.

For more information on Enviroschools  go to www.enviroschools.org.nz

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Lloyd Kennedy – 28 years of Service to Tasman                         

After 46 years working in local government, 28 of those in service to Tasman District, Lloyd Kennedy has retired.

Lloyd began his local government career in 1967 working for Oxford County Council as an office junior. In 1970 he became the Deputy County Clerk and in 1972 the County Clerk. Lloyd moved to the Tasman District in 1985 and became Deputy County Clerk for Waimea County Council and then, in 1989 when the amalgamation occurred, he became Administration Manager. When Albie Aubrey retired in 1992, Lloyd became Tasman District Council’s Community Services Manager.

Throughout Lloyd’s 21 years as Community Services Manager he has focused on customer service and community delivery. Lloyd drove the change in delivery of community facilities for the District from old-fashioned, rectangular halls, to multi-purpose community centres that not only provide a facility, but help to promote community cohesion.

Lloyd’s significant impact on the Community Services Department, Tasman District Council and our communities is his legacy of which he and his family can be very proud. The Council wishes Lloyd all the best in his retirement and thanks him for his hard work and dedication.

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New Animal Control Officer                         

Phil Bergman of Control Services Ltd, which carries out Council’s animal control enforcement responsibilities, has recently moved to a new role as Animal Welfare Officer at the Ministry of Primary Industries. The position he vacates has been taken up by Craig Crowley who comes with extensive experience and a varied history in animal /livestock/dog handling and animal welfare investigation.

Craig spent years working as a livestock officer in Dannevirke and Whakatane, then from 1985-1990 he was an Animal Quarantine Officer on Somes Island in Wellington harbour. In 1990 he was appointed the Somes Island Quarantine Manager, moving to  MAF’s head office in Wellington in the late 1990’s.

For the last 11 years Craig has been the Animal Welfare Inspector for the Nelson SPCA as well as being a member of the local Animal Ethics Committee and the National Inspector Advisory Committee.

The Council, through Control Services Ltd, provides animal control services and information to the Tasman District for urban and rural animal owners.

Services include stock control, dog control, lost and found services, dog registration information, help with problem animals and dog education programmes.

Control Services Ltd also carries out education programmes in schools, businesses and community groups on bite prevention, animal welfare, dog control and hygiene. These programmes make Tasman District a safer place for dogs and people.

Lost or found a dog or stock?  Please contact the Council, Ph. 03 543 8400.

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Tasman District Local Alcohol Policy                         

The introduction of the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012 has provided councils with the opportunity to make a local alcohol policy (LAP). The LAP may only control matters relating to premises licensed for the sale of alcohol and must be focused on reducing alcohol related harm. Once the LAP is in force, conditions established in the policy must be followed by the District Licensing Committee and the Alcohol Regulatory Licensing Authority.

The Tasman District Council has decided to produce a Draft LAP.  Prior to doing so Council sought the views of the community about alcohol licensing matters through community surveys, and a survey sent to key stakeholders, including industry representatives and health and community groups. There is also a statutory obligation to consult with the Police, the Medical Officer of Health and Licensing Inspectors prior to developing the Draft LAP. After considering the information gathered, the Draft LAP has been completed and sets the following controls:

  • “Off-licence” premises (places like bottle stores, supermarkets and grocery stores that sell alcohol, and pubs or hotels that sell “takeaway” alcohol) may only sell alcohol between the hours  of 7.00 am and 9.00 pm.
  • “On-licence” premises such as restaurants and cafes may only allow sale, supply or consumption of alcohol between the hours of 8.00 am and midnight except New Year’s Eve when sale, supply or consumption of alcohol may continue until 1.00 am the following day. Restaurants and cafes may operate outside of the hours they  are licensed for sale of alcohol, to provide meals and beverages  to the public, as long as no sale or supply or consumption of alcohol takes place.
  • “On-licence” premises such as taverns, hotels, pubs and nightclubs may only sell alcohol between the hours of 8.00 am and 1.30 am the following day. There is a 30 minute “drink-up” period after that (effectively until 2.00 am) before patrons are required to be off  the premises.
  • “Club licences” will be limited to the hours of 8.00 am to 1.00 am  the following day.
  • “On-licence” premises that are in or immediately adjacent to a residential zone may not operate after 11.00 pm.
  • The location of any new licensed premises is limited to commercial, central business, or tourist services zones, or must be otherwise permitted by a resource consent.
  • No restriction is placed on the hours a special licence may be issued for, but a list of discretionary conditions are included for the District Licensing Committee to consider before issuing a special licence.
  • One way doors are among a list of discretionary conditions that the District Licensing Committee will consider before issuing an on or  off licence.

The full statement of proposal for the Draft LAP and instructions for making a submission are now available on Council’s website at  www.tasman.govt.nz or can be viewed at any Tasman District Council Service Centre or library. The submission period is open until 4.30 pm on 30 August 2013.

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Freedom Camping Bylaw                       

Residents in a number of locations in Tasman District have been concerned about illegal camping activities being carried out near their properties. Having to endure such unacceptable practices as campers undertaking toilet activities in plain view, as well as concerns about associated contamination of public places has caused Council to rethink how it controls freedom camping activities.

The existing Freedom Camping Bylaw is made pursuant to the Local Government Act and has limited enforcement options. The proposed (Motueka and Pohara Foreshore) Freedom Camping Bylaw will be made pursuant to the Freedom Camping Act 2011, and whilst it will not significantly alter the type of control imposed compared with the existing Bylaw, it will allow Council’s enforcement staff to issue instant fines. The ability to issue instant fines has been found in the past to be sufficient incentive to achieve an acceptable level of compliance.

The areas that will be controlled by the new Bylaw and which will be subject to restrictions that will permit only fully self-contained vehicles to stop over are:

  1. Port Motueka area, including the North Street Reserve and Motueka Beach Reserve;
  2. Pohara Foreshore;
  3. Ligar Bay.

Full details of the statement of proposal including the draft bylaw and proposed amendment to the existing bylaw can be seen on Council’s website, www.tasman.govt.nz or can be viewed at any Tasman District Council Service Centre or Library. The submission period for the proposals closes on 30 August 2013.

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Rates Rebate                       

Residential ratepayers on low incomes, up to $23,650 per annum, may be eligible for a rates rebate of up to $590 for the current rating year. You can apply for a rebate for the current rating year only.

Each application is judged against criteria set by the Government. The criteria covers many points and, although the income limit is $23,650, you still may qualify for a rebate with a higher income figure if you have dependants, or if your rates are high.

For more information, and to get an application form, go to  www.tasman.govt.nz/property/rates/rates-rebate

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Ecofest Home Tours                       

The popular Ecofest home tours will be held during the weekend of Saturday 10 and Sunday 11 August 2013.

This is your opportunity to gain inspiration and ideas on the many ways in which you can make your home look after you!

Tickets and information will be available at Council’s Office and Service Centres from 17 July 2013. Be quick!

Ecofest expo will be held at the Trafalgar Centre on 17 & 18 August 2013.

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Ngatimoti Peninsula Bridge Centenary Celebrated in Style                     

The residents of Ngatimoti and Motueka Valley celebrated  100 years since the opening of the Peninsula Bridge at a community event on 6 July 2013.  The celebrations included a parade of vintage vehicles over the bridge, the unveiling of a plaque about the historic bridge, a display of historic photos in the Ngatimoti Hall, tree planting, storytelling and speeches.

The construction of the bridge across the Motueka River created a lifeline allowing better access for residents on the west bank of the river. The 1913 structure was built of steel on concrete piers. The original steel tripod towers were changed to reinforced concrete and the timber truss over the main span renewed with steel in 1938.

The Peninsula Bridge is listed as a Category 2 heritage structure in the Schedule of Heritage Buildings and Structures in the Tasman Resource Management Plan.

Photo courtesy of Marios Gavalas – Peninsula Bridge Centenary celebrations showing J Hurley’s 1914 Unic.

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