Best of TAURANGA

Tuesday 22 June 2010

Annual Plan, Rate Rise on Council Agenda
Tauranga City Council is set to adopt its annual plan today and set the next rate rise. The draft annual plan was adopted in March but has been adjusted following public hearings last month. One of the biggest changes is the decision to keep library books free, a plan to charge for adult books was slated by the public. The rates are also set to rise from the first of July this year by about 10 percent. Those rates will still be billed just twice a year, but water rates will be billed every quarter.

Volunteering ‘Alive and Well’
Volunteering in the Western Bay of Plenty appears to be in good shape. It's Volunteer Awareness Week and an event at Bayfair Shopping Centre on Sunday launched local awareness. Volunteer manager Di Walters says there are about 1,300 registered volunteers and about 700 are active in the community. She says there's a healthy attitude towards volunteering in the Western Bay.

Council Advertises for Museum Trustees
A new museum for Tauranga is now one step closer. Last month, Tauranga City Council voted to create a new museum community trust, which will fund and operate any future museum. The council has now advertised for trustees to sit on the board of the Tauranga Moana Museum Trust. The trustees won't be paid for their service but the council will give 40 thousand dollars to the trust as a start up fund. Council staff say the trustees will need to establish community support for the museum, develop a concept plan for it, and raise capital to build and operate it.

All Whites Create Soccer Buzz
A Bay of Plenty football fanatic says the All Whites have created a huge buzz around football. The New Zealand side drew one all with defending champs Italy in the World Cup yesterday. Western Bay of Plenty Football Federation development leader Peter Smith says it was an amazing, almost unbelievable result. He says football's now firmly in the minds of most New Zealanders. Peter Smith says the number of juniors taking up soccer in Tauranga has increased since the All Whites qualified for the Cup.

Te Puna Resource Consent Decision Upheld
The Environment Court has upheld a decision not to grant resource consent to a Te Puna developer. The consent application for earthworks at the mouth of the Wairoa River, was initially refused by Environment Bay of Plenty on cultural grounds. It said the earthworks would've had an adverse affect on the relationship of Maori with their ancestral land. EBoP spokesman Malcolm Whitaker says the move by the court to uphold that decision shows the council is in touch with cultural concerns. However he says the council doesn't want to hold up development in the region, it just needs to be done in the correct place, in the correct way.

Rugby World Cup Volunteers Wanted
Rugby World Cup 2011 is looking to recruit volunteers from Tauranga. More than 5 thousand helpers from around the country will be taken on over the coming month to lend a hand during next year's World Cup. Representatives will be in Tauranga at the Queen Elizabeth youth centre on the 14th of July to scout for talent. They say they're looking for people who're enthusiastic and committed to serving and hosting over 60 thousand visitors.

Right Bulbs Could Win You Home Makeover
An appeal's been launched to get more Bay of Plenty residents using energy efficient light bulbs. Locals are being encouraged to buy three new energy bulbs by the end of July, to go into the draw to win a 10 thousand dollar home make over. Electricity Commission spokesman Stuart Ross says the home makeover is designed to reduce power costs by improving lighting and heating. Just last month, the commission released a report showing residents could save at least 8 million dollars simply by fitting energy efficient light bulbs.

Posted: Tue 22 Jun 2010

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