So say Crs Lee Vandervis and Andrew Whiley, who deny a public spat with Cr David Benson-Pope over a public playground has anything to do with ambitions for public office. But Cr Benson-Pope has hit back, saying the political pot-shots show the starter's gun has already sounded for next year's local body elections. Cr Whiley then weighed in, emailing to ask Cr Benson-Pope if he could "for clarity" point to where the concept had previously been discussed. Cr Vandervis said Cr Benson-Pope's comments showed he "desperately needs a diversion, because of what he's foolishly done". Cr Benson-Pope ruled out standing for mayor, but was undecided on seeking re-election as a councillor.
Kathy Howard (31) prepares to graduate from Otago Polytechnic. PHOTO: GERARD O'BRIENOnce only a heartbeat away from disaster, Kathy Howard has plenty to celebrate when she graduates from Otago Polytechnic today. Miss Howard (31) first came to Dunedin and the polytechnic from the West Coast in 2015, not knowing anyone in the city. She arrived with informal skills she had built up as an adult, including helping with complex fishing quota paperwork for fishing boats. That support, and her own positive attitude and sense of humour have helped her survive and flourish at the polytechnic.
However, a new Southern District Health Board initiative meant she was discharged after just a day in Dunedin Hospital - and she could not be happier about being back home again. "I far prefer to be here ... and I wouldn't be here without the Home Team," Mrs Collis said. Created as part of the SDHB and WellSouth's Primary and Community Care Strategy, Home Team was instituted for economic, logistical and health outcomes. The initiative is an excellent example of the Primary and Community Care Strategy in action." "They have been in every day and sometimes they have come back again if things weren't right," Mrs Collis said.
Photo: Stephen JaquieryDunedin residents will continue to be vulnerable during extreme weather until there is a better understanding of the city's flood risk, an independent audit has found. An audit of the city's stormwater network and flood risk by the Office of the Auditor-General found significant gaps in the Dunedin City Council's knowledge of its own network but did also find improvements. The audit investigated how the council managed its stormwater system to protect people and their properties from the effects of flooding. Two other councils - the Porirua City Council and Thames-Coromandel District Council - were also included in the audit. Councils needed to start making deliberate choices about their levels of service to protect communities from the risks associated with climate change and increased flooding events, he said.
December 13, 2018 15:45 UTC
The three houses in Motu St in St Clair subject to dangerous building notices issued last night after it was found they could be at risk from a potential slip behind their properties. The occupants of four St Clair houses were ordered to evacuate their properties immediately last night, following the discovery of a dangerous landslip on the hill above. DCC community services general manager Simon Pickford said it appeared the slip originated on the Allandale Rd property following recent heavy rain. "The risk means that we have no choice but to issue dangerous building notices, which will remain in place until the properties canbe made safe." Motu St property owner Karen McPhee helps her daughter move out "essentials" from her property.
December 13, 2018 15:45 UTC
Until recently, all Kiwibank's physical branches were in NZ Post stores. Mr Stephen said Kiwibank was adapting to suit changing customer preferences, although it did still see a role for physical branches. Mr Stephen said Kiwibank was "a challenger and we will be a challenger" and that was one reason why it was opening stand-alone branches independent of NZ Post. Both NZ Post and Kiwibank had been consulting with local communities and conducting other research before closing branches - "these are not decisions we're making on the fly," Mr Stephen said. NZ Post now had 880 franchisees.
December 13, 2018 15:35 UTC
The Oamaru Kiwibank and Post Shop on Severn St. Photo: Google MapsAs Kiwibank in Oamaru prepares to become a standalone branch, NZ Post has started its search for an appropriate business from which to operate. Kiwibank confirmed on Wednesday, after consultation with staff, that it planned to invest in a standalone branch in Oamaru at the site it shared at present with NZ Post in Severn St.As a result, NZ Post will shift to another Oamaru location and operate in conjunction with another established business. "Banking, like many industries, has seen a revolution in the way customers want to access and interact with our services. Meanwhile, NZ Post remained committed to retaining services in Oamaru and was actively searching for an Oamaru business to base its postal service and bill payment operations out of. An NZ Post spokesperson said several factors would be considered before the company settled on an ideal location.
A district plan variation allowing a supermarket and a retirement village to be built at the Northlake housing area in Wanaka has been approved. At its full meeting in Queenstown yesterday, the Queenstown Lakes District Council adopted the recommendation of an independent hearings panel to approve Private Plan Change 53. It means the developer of the 220ha subdivision, Northlake Investments Ltd, can include a supermarket of up to 1250sq m - 250sq m less than requested. The plan change will more than double the size of the commercial area, enabling establishing a retirement home. Mayor Jim Boult said he "reluctantly" recommended the plan change be approved.
More than half the rooms at a major Queenstown hotel will be out of action for months next year after two wings of the complex were found to be earthquake-prone. Eighty-nine out of the 165 rooms at Rydges Lakeland Resort Queenstown will be closed from the end of February for strengthening work to be carried out. Using Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment identification methodology, the Rydges was one of 45 buildings to fall in that category. "Rydges Hotel has been very proactive in working with council on this, and as a result we have requested a seismic assessment of their hotel building." He could not say how many hotel staff would lose their jobs or have reduced hours as a result of the partial closure, although those affected would be "variable staff".
Recent research has confirmed 2016 findings that New Zealand blackcurrants are a "super fruit'' for those with an active lifestyle. A second study showed New Zealand blackcurrant juice consumption before exercise increased the desire to exercise for longer. "As people live longer, foods and ingredients that will support a healthy lifestyle are becoming increasingly in demand,'' Dr Roger Hurst, of Plant & Food Research, said. After drinking blackcurrant juice, they voluntarily exercised for longer and reported a more positive mood during the activity. We can't be certain manufactured products like Barker's syrups will have the same benefits until they have been fully evaluated,'' a Plant & Food Research spokesman said.
The government's ambition that tobacco use be a thing of the past by 2025 looks to be going up in smoke, two new reports suggest. The Smokefree 2025 goal - as put in place by the government in 2011 - would require enormous increases in smoking cessation rates, an article published today in the New Zealand Medical Journal says. "Smokefree" is considered to be fewer than 5% of adults smoking daily. They found almost twice as many people as stop smoking each year now would need to stub out their final cigarette in the future for the Smokefree target to be reached, and five times as many Maori. "It was submitted that, to reach the 2025 goal, 5.2 times the usual number of Maori quitters would have to quit each year, and 1.9 times the usual number of non-Maori."
History was made last night when Black Ferns halfback Kendra Cocksedge was named the player of the year and the Black Ferns sevens side was named team of the year at the New Zealand Rugby awards in Auckland. She was also named the New Zealand Rugby women's player of the year. The Black Ferns Sevens team won the award after a top year in which it won gold at the Commonwealth Games and at the Rugby World Cup sevens. Commonwealth gold medal and Rugby World Cup sevens-winning All Blacks sevens coach Clark Laidlaw was named New Zealand Coach of the Year. Scott Curry was named All Blacks Sevens Player of the Year, and Michaela Blyde, who last month was named World Rugby's top women's sevens player, was the Black Ferns Sevens Player of the Year.
At some stage during the next four days Otago needs to score at least 300 runs. It plays Canterbury in a bottom-of-the-table fixture at the University of Otago Oval, and the Volts will be hoping to put their batting woes behind them. The team has really struggled in the Plunket Shield this season, particularly in the first innings. So far the Volts have limped to first innings scores of 108, 190 and 162 for three heavy losses. The Volts have a stronger side this week, with Rutherford returning from New Zealand A duty.
Photo: ODT filesNo-one can begrudge Ben Smith his decision to go to France. He admitted next year is going to be a big year, and that is before he even heads to Pau in France. "There is so much rugby to be played next year I'm not even thinking about playing in France," he said. Smith will be 33 when he arrives in France and will join a club with plenty of people he knows and admires. After that it will be a summer in Europe and then, nearing 34, he may head to Japan or stay put in France.
Four hundred and forty Year 9 and 10 students at Wellington College illustrate the human toll of a pandemic. In the latest issue of the New Zealand Medical Journal, Profs Michael Baker and Nick Wilson reviewed the 1918 influenza outbreak and the lessons to be learned from it today. New Zealand's public health system was dramatically overhauled in the wake of the pandemic and prevention measures put in place. "A research fund would be a fitting living memorial for the victims of the flu pandemic - including health workers and community volunteers," Prof Baker said. Prof Wilson said a pandemic remained a genuine threat to New Zealand - either from new influenza strains or from other new pathogens.