Plenty of activity in Wanganui - 17/05/2008by Deputy Mayor Dot McKinnon
The winter cold may have descended upon us, but it has not diminished activity in Wanganui.
W(h)anganui Iwi are attempting to put the 'h' back into Wanganui again. Transit is investigating the option of a roundabout and the Mayor seeks beautification of our southern gateway into Wanganui.
A much needed, overarching Visitor Strategy for Wanganui, the 'brainchild' of Matt Edmonds of Wanganui District Council Holdings, is under scrutiny and will be discussed at full Council level shortly. This is a great opportunity for tourism operators, event co-ordinators, arts, conference, conservationists, Iwi and business people to focus on Wanganui's strengths and promote our city regionally, nationally and internationally.
On May 22, Councillors will be listening to public submissions to the Annual Plan for the 2008/09 year. For those interested in hearing a wide range of issues, join us at the District Council Chamber that day.
On June 13, Council will give a civic launch to Jenny Pattrick's new bestseller, 'Landings'. You can purchase this riveting chronology of Wanganui's heritage at Whitcoulls and other local bookshops. It is a wonderful promotion of our river and culture.
On May 23, the Rotary Clubs of Wanganui will host their annual Careers Expo at the Racecourse. This is an opportunity for students to learn of potential career paths.
I will be interested to attend the Chamber of Commerce breakfast on June 17 – where Westpac Chief Economist, Brendan O'Donovan, will be 'filling us in' on his take on the economy. The doom and gloom merchants will have us believe that we are heading towards a further recession, but I don't want to think like that. Certainly, there are sectors of the economy hurting, in particular retail and the service industry and those on fixed incomes will also be hurting. I anticipate more unemployment over the winter months as well. However, it is not time to batten down the hatches completely. Those who can must invest in their businesses. Government, central and local, must continue to invest in infrastructure and we must all improve our skill level. Education and skills are even more important today than ever before.
Oops! Don't forget, there is a by-election looming. A new councillor will be voted onto Council on Saturday, June 21. Hopefully, you will all take an interest in how the candidates will assist present councillors to make our city and district an even better place in which to live.