September Cover 2017

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September Cover 2017

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Meet our new Chief Executive Officer!

Westland District Council is delighted to introduce you to Mr Simon Bastion who will take up his appointment as Council'...

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Meet our new Chief Executive Officer!

Westland District Council is delighted to introduce you to Mr Simon Bastion who will take up his appointment as Council’s new Chief Executive Officer later this year.

Simon Bastion is currently a senior manager at Westland Milk Products in Hokitika. He was one of three applicants recommended for an interview by Local Government New Zealand, and he has received unanimous support from our Elected Representatives.

Mr Bastion has 20 plus years’ experience in the food, beverage and manufacturing sectors, both locally and internationally, including in Saudi Arabia.

Westland Mayor, Bruce Smith, says: “Simon is an operational person and very experienced in the areas that make up the majority of what business we carry out and we think that he will provide both real leadership qualities and experience right across the board that will be very useful.”

Mr Bastion hails from Te Awamutu originally, but has made his home in Hokitika with partner Vicki. He is very invested in the local community and sees this appointment as a way for him to give back to the community that has welcomed and supported him. His focus is on ensuring a sustainable future for the District, and a good quality of life for residents through efficient Council processes and the implementation of council strategy.

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Computer programming club for kids

In a world saturated with technology, it’s become much easier to simply be a consumer, using devices and software withou...

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Computer programming club for kids

In a world saturated with technology, it’s become much easier to simply be a consumer, using devices and software without understanding what makes them tick, or knowing how to take control.

By joining the Westland District Library Code Club, children aged 8- 14 years can learn the basics of computer programming which will allow them to think creatively, solve problems, design projects and work collaboratively – essential skills for life in the 21st century.

The ‘Scratch’ course uses colourful and simple to understand commands that fit together to build interactive games, stories and animations, sneaking in ideas about constants, variables, objects, user interfaces and maths in a fun way.

Scratch projects are downloaded from the Code Club Aotearoa website and our Code Club tutor, Flow, expertly guides children through these online projects, which can then be shared at home.

Tana, aged 9 from Ross School says: “I like doing stuff on computers and I’ve learnt how to make things move around, flip and disappear.”

Leith, aged 8 from Kaniere School says: ” love making games and then playing them. I’ve also learnt that not all codes work so I have to think what is wrong and find one that works.”

Tana’s Mum says: “Tana counts down the days until the next coding session as he enjoys it so much.”

Leith’s Mum says: “It is fantastic that the library is offering Code Club as it is fun and the kids learn to think creatively too.”

To register for beginner level coding in Term 4, go to the Kids’ Place on the library website homepage.

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Positive reaction to Rates Rebate Roadshow

Every year Council administers the Rates Rebate Scheme for the Department of Internal Affairs. Residents sometimes find...

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Positive reaction to Rates Rebate Roadshow

Every year Council administers the Rates Rebate Scheme for the Department of Internal Affairs.

Residents sometimes find this difficult to apply for due to the paperwork or understanding if they meet the criteria. So this month, we held a series of face-to-face meetings to guide people through the process in person. We held stalls, open workshops and meetings in Hokitika, Kumara, Fox Glacier, Franz Josef, Okarito, Haast, Whataroa, Ross and Hari Hari.

It was a great experience for Council staff to meet residents especially those living in rural areas. Staff said that community members were very welcoming and demonstrated a lot of pride and hospitality on behalf of their towns.

Approximately 50 people attended one of the roadshow locations.

If you missed out on attending one of our in person events, do not despair! Rates rebate applications are still open until 30 June 2018. You can contact the Council Rates Officer for help with your application by phoning our Customer Services Team on 756-9010.

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Appointment of a new Tourism West Coast representative

Alexander Tschampel, General Manager of the Scenic Hotel Franz Josef Glacier, has been appointed as the Westland Distric...

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Appointment of a new Tourism West Coast representative

Alexander Tschampel, General Manager of the Scenic Hotel Franz Josef Glacier, has been appointed as the Westland District Council’s new representative to the Tourism West Coast Board.

Mr Tschampel has over 20 years of international hospitality experience in New Zealand and Germany. Locally, he’s has been contributing his expertise and hospitality know-how in popular tourism destinations such as Mount Cook, Queenstown, and Auckland.

He relocated to the Westland region about four years ago together with his wife and children and fell in love with the sheer beauty and diversity of the West Coast. He’s a passionate advocate of the region, proudly promoting its benefits to current and potential visitors.

Mr Tschampel believes that he can offer the board his extensive management skills and innovative thinking. His desire is to achieve enhanced collaboration between likeminded professionals, businesspeople, accommodation and tourism providers to engage and forge sustainable and prosperous GDP growth in tourism for the entire region.

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Sunset Point Development Plan

Westland District Council adopted the concept design of Hokitika's Waterfront Development at its August Council meeting....

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Sunset Point Development Plan

Westland District Council adopted the concept design of Hokitika’s Waterfront Development at its August Council meeting. The design lays out a solid foundation that can be implemented as funding and contributions become available.

The design focuses on utilising the existing infrastructure and establishing a solid foundation that can accommodate community gatherings, green open spaces and parking infrastructure. Smaller-scale creative projects can be added in the future.

Sunset Point and the area currently known as the beach access opposite Weld Lane will be areas requiring the largest amount of construction. The north end of Beach street (where the replica of the Tambo is) will be the immediate focus to protect the waterfront from erosion by the sea.

Council are looking to receive surplus native plants from the community for planting areas and discuss opportunities for contractors and local service groups to assist in the construction and execution of this plan.

Our aspiration is that this redevelopment will enhance the waterfront to be a family-friendly picnic spot, and to have better infrastructure (i.e. parking and public toilets) for those that use this space.

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Westland’s new Chinese Ambassador

Mike Keenan was appointed Westland’s Ambassador to the Chinese community by a unanimous decision of Councillors at the 2...

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Westland’s new Chinese Ambassador

Mike Keenan was appointed Westland’s Ambassador to the Chinese community by a unanimous decision of Councillors at the 27th of July Council meeting.

Mike is best known as the father of the Hokitika Wildfoods Festival for 21 years, the creator of the West Coast Wilderness Trail concept and in the last three years as the Department of Internal Affairs funded community officer for the Chinese garden projects in Ross and Kumara.

One of Mike’s priorities is to try and establish a sister city relationship between Hokitika and a city in China. He would also like to bring more fee-paying students from China to Westland High School and help them have an authentic kiwi experience including visiting a marae, milking a cow and exploring our beautiful region.

“The Chinese are very obliging people,” says Mike. “Over the past four years, I’ve hosted a lot of Chinese boarders and it’s been a great cultural experience. You learn a lot of things.”

“Westland historically has always had a very close relationship with the Chinese as many early gold miners to the District were from China.

“I’m also looking at opportunities to bring Chinese investment into the region and I think the opportunities that this will create will be really good. It’s a very significant relationship to grow for us in terms of tourism.”

1_Mike-Keenan

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Rural fire open season: What does this mean for me?

Westland residents are able to light a fire in the open air without needing to get a fire permit, as long as you have pe...

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Rural fire open season: What does this mean for me?

Westland residents are able to light a fire in the open air without needing to get a fire permit, as long as you have permission from the relevant land owner.

However, you are still responsible for the fire and must exercise caution, check the weather, be well prepared before lighting and ensure that the fire doesn’t get out of control and spread to vegetation or property.

Please remember that you need to:

  • Locate the fire away from buildings, trees and fences
  • Have a means to extinguish the fire
  • Refrain from causing a smoke nuisance
  • Check the weather conditions and if it’s possible, inform your nearest Fire Station.

Fires on Public Conservation Land are still restricted 365 days a year. This means that fire permits are required for all fires on Public Conservation Land other than for an approved campground fire or a fire lit for cooking or warmth using the following methods:

  • Enclosed drum or incinerator
  • Gas cooker or gas barbeque
  • Contained barbeque

Please note that the burning of any toxic waste (rubber, oil, plastic etc.) is not permitted at any time.

For more information click here.

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Long service award presented to staff member

One of the members of our wider Westland District Council family, Shona Winter from Westland District Library, is leavin...

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Long service award presented to staff member

One of the members of our wider Westland District Council family, Shona Winter from Westland District Library, is leaving us to move to Christchurch after an impressive 28 years of service.

In recognition of her long and dedicated service, Councillors acknowledged her in the August Council meeting.

Sarah Thompson, Westland District Library Manager says, “Shona joined the library team in 1989 and has played a key role in developing some outstanding library services. The list of Shona’s achievements and successes while working as Deputy Librarian is huge and we will all miss her greatly.”

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Civil Defence training exercise a big hit!

About 20 Westland residents from in and around Hokitika gave up their Saturday on the 26 August to learn and hone skills...

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Civil Defence training exercise a big hit!

About 20 Westland residents from in and around Hokitika gave up their Saturday on the 26 August to learn and hone skills in the event of an earthquake emergency.

Among the volunteers were seven staff members from Westland District Council, plus Hokitika Search and Rescue volunteers and interested members of the community. Red Cross volunteers did a great job catering on the day with the assistance of a generous donation of food from Hokitika New World.

Volunteers were split off into groups to cover a range of emergency functions including intelligence, logistics, communications, operations, welfare and incident control. This is in line with the Coordinated Incident Management System approach used by Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management and the New Zealand Police, New Zealand Defence Force, St John, Fire and Emergency New Zealand and other emergency groups nationwide.

Our volunteers also canvassed houses on Revell, Sewell and Beach Streets in Hokitika to assess residents’ levels of disaster preparedness, distribute information and answer questions. Feedback was extremely positive. Two training exercises will be held every year moving forward, based on different emergency scenarios.

Mark Davies, Regional Director for the Department of Conservation and one of the West Coast’s nominated Civil Defence Controllers said:

“The exercise, based on a moderate earthquake event across Hokitika was a real success. This scenario is a real risk for our community so it was great to use this for both training and increasing awareness across the township. It was pleasing to see this community-led volunteer initiative supported by Westland District Council staff, local Search and Rescue, Red Cross and other interested parties. What I saw as a controller was an excellent Incident Action Plan in place, priorities set, teams tasked on priority work and deployed, good communications established and the planning and intelligence units working hard building a plan.”

2_Civil-Defence-volunteers-speaking-to-Hokitika-resident-Shirley-Ryan

Civil Defence volunteers speaking to Hokitika resident Shirley Ryan. Volunteers from left to right are Mark Martini, Michelle Bunt (lower level, foreground) Scott Peters and Liam Gorrie (upper level, background).

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Lake Kaniere Mixed Usage Plan

Maritime New Zealand invites submissions on a proposal to establish a “Lake Kaniere Mixed Usage Plan” to promote the sim...

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Lake Kaniere Mixed Usage Plan

Maritime New Zealand invites submissions on a proposal to establish a “Lake Kaniere Mixed Usage Plan” to promote the simultaneous use and separation of activities at the lake to enhance navigational safety.

The plan will be built around the creation of reserved areas under Maritime Rules Part 91 and separate activities such as power boat usage (water skiing, personal watercraft), swimming, kayaking and like activities.

The plan proposes that areas of the lake margins will be reserved for specified activities such as:

  • Swimming and non-powered vessels/motor boats travelling at under 5 knots.
  • Water skiing lanes/course and personal water craft (inclusive of particular times of day when the areas can be used).
  • Powered boat usage at speeds over 5 knots.

There will be no restriction on the use of the rest of the lake other than general requirements relating to speed under Maritime Rules Part 91 (Navigation Safety Rules).

As part of this consultation, Maritime New Zealand also invites comment on other measures that may be incorporated into the plan, taking into account the potential need to review current Navigation Safety Rules (Rule Part 91) and to compile an up to date list of New Zealand lakes and waterways that may require a regulatory/safety review such as that completed for Lake Kaniere.


Making a submission

The consultation document and online submission form can be found here.

Consultation will run until 5.00pm Friday 29 September 2017 and we encourage you to have your say by making a submission.

The time for making a submission on the proposal will close at 5.00pm Friday 29th September 2017. Submissions must include the name and contact details of the person making the submission. They can be made:

  • By e-mail to rules.coordinator@maritimenz.govt.nz
  • By post addressed to Rules Coordinator, PO Box 25620, Wellington 6146
  • By fax to (04) 494 8901
  • By delivery to Maritime New Zealand, Level 11 1 Grey Street, Wellington.

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