Issue No. 558 - 16 February 2012
New Manager for Friendship Centre
The Nagaizumi Wanganui Friendship Centre in Duncan Street, Wanganui East, has a new Manager, Yumiko Mizuno.
The Friendship Centre has been operating for 11 years. Yumiko is enjoying her new role as Manager and looking forward to making sure the Centre is a friendly, warm and welcoming place for all visitors, especially Japanese students who are studying in Wanganui and visitors to the district from Japan.
One of her first jobs as Manager is to relocate the large exhibition which includes Japanese artefacts, scrolls, photos and even kimonos. It is being moved to a different space within the centre and provides an insight into Japanese culture.
Yumiko has lived in Wanganui for the last year and a half but she is originally from Sendai, Japan. She recently returned from a visit to the area where her family still live. In March 2011 Sendai suffered a major earthquake and tsunami which caused major devastation to the region.
"I have previously lived in Auckland but I did not find it a friendly place. Wanganui people are so kind and hospitable – they are lovely people."
In the garden of the Friendship Centre is an authentic Japanese tea house, one of only a few in the southern hemisphere.
Wanganui and Nagaizumi-cho became sister cities in 1988. Nagaizumi was chosen due to its demographic similarities to Wanganui and rural nature, as well as the likely prospect of mutual benefits. There are now strong social, cultural, sporting and educational links between the two cities, with many students from Japan choosing to live and study in Wanganui.
There have been a number of official visits, led by the Mayors of both cities. The centre acts as a support for many students from Japan who visit and study in Wanganui, as well as helps to promote Japanese culture and businesses.
2012 marks the 60th anniversary of diplomatic relations between New Zealand and Japan. To celebrate this relationship Council has formed a working party which is busy planning a series of events which will take place in June this year.
History of the Friendship Centre
In 1991 Nagaizumi-cho Council purchased 27 Duncan Street and 18 months later erected an authentic Japanese tea house in the back garden. This two-storey residential property became the Nagaizumi Wanganui Friendship Centre and has been managed by staff from Nagaizumi-cho and more recently a staff member from the Nagaizumi-cho Council.
In 2011, Nagaizumi-cho transferred responsibility for the management of the Friendship Centre to Wanganui District Council although Nagaizumi-cho retains ownership of the Centre.
The Friendship Centre will continue to be a 'mini-embassy' for the many Japanese students in Wanganui and will develop its role in promoting Japanese culture and economic opportunities for Wanganui people, organisations and school groups through offering courses, events and traditional tea ceremonies.
Sarjeant Gallery exhibition
Cobi Cockburn & Charles Butcher: The Long Black Veil
Australian-based artists Charles Butcher and Cobi Cockburn, artists-in-residence at Tylee Cottage from August 2011 to February 2012, have made an extraordinary body of work as a response to their time in New Zealand.
The Long Black Veil includes works in a variety of media, including exploded steel, rust, paint and glass, that deal with the challenging matrix of spirituality, landscape, history and hard edged formal abstraction.
The exhibition is on at the Sarjeant until April 29.
Caption: Cobi Cockburn & Charles Butcher, The Long Black Veil
Outgoing Youth Councillors thanked for contribution to positive youth development
The February meeting of the Youth Committee was the last meeting for five Youth Councillors, who will be leaving the committee to pursue their studies.
Amongst those leaving is Youth Cr Frances Wood-Bodley, who is going to study at Victoria University. Frances has served on the Youth Committee for four years and has been Co-deputy Chair for the past year-and-a-half. Frances has been involved in a variety of projects including Picnic in the Park, the School Leaders Network and attended the Cultural Diversity Conference.
Youth Crs Marie Webb, Naomi Poludore and Therese Verhoek are also leaving to attend university. They have been involved in a whole range of events including the Castlecliff Skate Competition last year.
Youth Cr Caleb Perry is stepping down from the Youth Committee in order to focus on his final school year studies. Caleb will stay involved in the Youth Committee through being part of the School Leavers Network. Both Caleb and Therese attended Wanganui Rural Community Board meetings to provide a youth perspective on rural issues.
Cr Jack Bullock, Chair of the Youth Committee, thanked the Youth Councillors for their commitment and achievements.
"It’s great to see young people in Wanganui taking the time to 'speak up and be heard' on behalf of their peers. The Youth Committee is a big commitment but it’s important to have youth lead projects and initiatives as well as having the views of young people filtering into the work of mainstream Council," Cr Bullock said.
"We are really lucky to have such great Youth Councillors who have achieved such a lot and in particular Frances. She has been with the Youth Committee for the past four years and has contributed to the shaping of it to make it one of the most active and successful Youth Committee’s in the country.
"I wish them all well with their future journeys and look forward to welcoming new Youth Councillors for 2012."
If you’re aged between 12 and 24 years and would like to become a Youth Councillor click here. Applications close 24 February 2012.
Wanganui.com UIM Jet Sprint World Series
February 18 /19
Don't miss the final of the Wanganui.com UIM Jet Sprint World Series at the Shelter View track at Upokongaro this weekend.
The event will deliver an exciting and spectacular day out for the whole family with plenty of action on and off the water.
Local Wanganui jet sprint racers and current New Zealand Super Boat champions Leighton and Kellie Minnell.have got a great chance of taking the World Series title, after a winning performance at last week’s event in the Wairarapa. The finals on Sunday will be live streamed on the wanganui.com website.
The Wanganui finals will be followed by an awards evening at the War Memorial Centre where the winners' trophies will be presented.
For details of the full programme and to buy tickets online click here. Tickets are also available from the i-Site Visitor Information Centre on Taupo Quay.
Wanganui District Council's Youth Committee, Mayor Annette Main and Cr Jack Bullock invite you and your family to a special event to mark the anniversary of the February 2011 Christchurch earthquake.
The Christchurch Memorial Service will be held at Majestic Square at 5.00pm on Wednesday, February 22 – a year since the tragic earthquake.
Mayor Main will open the service and there will be readings by Monsignor David Bell and Kimberley Hunt. A local band will play appropriate music before the service. An Order of Service will be provided at no cost by Cleveland Funeral Home.
After a minute’s silence, 185 red and black balloons will be released to signify the lives lost during the earthquake.
Youth Councillors will collect donations for the Red Cross.
The event is being funded by the Youth Committee.
Conversation with Castlecliff
Members of the Castlecliff community are invited to a meeting with Mayor Annette Main and Wanganui District Council representatives.
When: Wednesday, 29 February 2012 at 7.00pm
Everyone is welcome. The meeting is supported by Safer Whanganui.
Heritage at the Market
Have you got a heritage favourite to tell us about? How can the community help heritage building owners? Have we got too much heritage protected? Or not enough? How much would you be prepared to pay to keep our heritage?
However you react to these questions, we would love to hear from you so come along to the River Traders Market, Moutoa Quay, this Saturday (February 18) and have a chat with Wanganui District Council staff and heritage expert Wendy Turvey.
Proposed Wanganui District Council (Prohibition of Gang Insignia) Bylaw 2012
Wanganui District Council is notifying its intention to consider a new Wanganui District Council (Prohibition of Gang Insignia) Bylaw 2012.
On 9 May 2009, the Wanganui District Council (Prohibition of Gang Insignia) Act 2009 received its Royal assent through Parliament. In September 2009 the Council made a bylaw in accordance with the 'Act' - the Wanganui District Council (Prohibition of Gang Insignia) Bylaw 2009.
This Bylaw was challenged through the High Court and was found to be invalid.
Wanganui District Council decided not to appeal the High Court decision and instead has opted to make a new bylaw which takes into account the matters raised in the High Court’s decision.
The proposed Bylaw includes definitions of terms, specifies gangs and specifies public places where the display of gang insignia is prohibited at all times.
Submissions are now invited on the Proposed Wanganui District Council (Prohibition of Gang Insignia) Bylaw 2012.
Copies of the Proposed Bylaw, Statement of Proposal, Summary of Information and submission forms are available from the Customer Services Desk, Municipal Building, 101 Guyton Street, Wanganui, and at the District Library, Queens Park, during normal opening hours. These documents are also available online here, by email or by telephoning Customer Services, phone 349 0001.
Submissions should be addressed to:
The Chief Executive
Submissions close at 5.00pm on Friday, 23 March 2012.
Rates Instalment 3 due date reminder
A reminder to all ratepayers that the due date for payment of Instalment 3 is Wednesday, 22 February 2012. Please ensure payments reach our office by close of business on this day.
Council offers direct debit as a method of payment. Frequency of payments can be weekly, fortnightly, monthly, quarterly or yearly. Please contact the rates department for further information, phone 349 0001.
Rates rebate reminder 2011/12 rating year
Ratepayers who may qualify for a rates rebate must make an application by 30 June 2012 for the 2011/12 rating year. (The rating year runs from 1 July – 30 June).
If your income is low to moderate (maximum $23,240) then you may be eligible for a rates rebate up to $580. To determine if you are eligible we require your gross income earnings (before tax) for the tax period ending 31 March 2011. The rates rebate will be calculated on your income earnings and your 2011/12 Wanganui District Council rates and Horizons Regional Council rates.
Please contact the rates department for further information, phone 349 0001.
Use of sprinklers
Consumers are advised that automatic garden sprinklers can be used by all residents (irrespective of whether their house number is an odd or even number) between the following times:
7pm to 9pm During the hours of daylight saving
Hand-held hoses can be used at any time.
We welcome members of the public to attend our meetings.
Infrastructure and Property – February 21 (2.00pm, Council Chamber)
Community and Environment – February 23 (2.00pm, Council Chamber)
Strategy and Finance – February 28 (2.00pm, Council Chamber)
Council – March 8 (3.00pm, Council Chamber)
Agendas are available at the Customer Services Counter, Municipal Office Building, 101 Guyton Street, Wanganui and the Wanganui District Library two working days prior to the meeting.