Port Earnings Up
The Port of Tauranga says although it's been another successful year, the economic recovery is going to be long, slow and patchy. At its Limited Annual Meeting yesterday it was announced Tauranga now handles 80 per cent more international cargo volume than the nearest competitor. Underlying earnings after tax for the year ended June 2010 were up 9.3 per cent. Chief Executive Mark Cairns says the excellent road and rail connectivity and financial strength are reasons why the port is the obvious choice to accommodate larger ships into New Zealand.
Councillors, Mayor Sworn In
Tauranga City Councillors are promising to build better relationships with one another after an 'unenjoyable' three years. Mayor Stuart Crosby and the ten councillors have been officially sworn in at the inaugural council meeting. Cr David Stewart who has been re-elected as Deputy Mayor, says it's about respect for each other and the community. He says that's the reason for low voter turn out in the elections - which was below 50 per cent. The next full council meeting will take place November 17th.
13 Year Old Caught Speeding
A 13 year old was pursued by police after being spotted going more than 20 kilometres over the speed limit. It was one of many incidents involving dangerous and irresponsible drivers over Labour Weekend in the Western Bay. Acting senior sergeant Mark Holmes says in an ‘act of clear stupidity’ two drivers were caught racing over at 103 km/h in a 50 km zone. He says in another crazy act a motorcyclist was checked at 200km/h near Katikati and evaded apprehension by driving up a rural road and hiding in orchard properties.
Restaurant Owner: CBD a ‘Ghost Town’
Many restaurants in Tauranga chose to forgo a holiday surcharge to attract customers back to the CBD. In an agreement with the Tauranga City Council, businesses along the Strand have become footpath tenants directly outside their premise. Amphora owner John Harvey says although it's a step in the right direction, the CBD is a ghost town. He says they need to attract people back through events like the Jazz Festival.
MAF Pleased with Level of Compliance
Ministry of Fisheries along the East Cost is happy with the level of compliance over the long weekend. Officers stopped over 400 cars near Opotiki, but only caught around 5 who had illegally sized shellfish. Spokesman Charles Harley says compliance seems to be getting better each year.