Lions tour report

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment has contracted PricewaterhouseCoopers to prepare a report on the financial benefits from the Lions' rugby tour in Northland and around the country.

Thousands of visitors, including an estimated 2000 Lions fans, travelled to Whangarei for the Lions' tour opener at Toll Stadium on June 3. Whangarei ran out of bars that evening as more than 1000 visitors could not get in while accommodation was hard to find. PwC's report should be released by the end of this month.

School's bikes stolen

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Okaihau Primary is calling for any sightings of two distinctive, lime-green, Radius-brand bicycles stolen from the school on Monday night. A school post on the Kaikohe Community Watch Facebook page said staff were gutted that someone would steal donated equipment that benefited the children. Call Kaikohe police on (09) 405 2960 with any information.

Dance for pay action

A flash mob dancing to the Donna Summer song She Works Hard for the Money will be part of Equal Pay Week of Action in Whangarei tomorrow. The week, which runs from tomorrow until August 19, has been organised by the Council of Trade Unions to highlight the pay gap between males and females. The flash mob will be dancing at the old Toyota site at Whangarei Town Basin, from 10.30am, with participants urged to wear red.

Pest patrols recognised

Long-running efforts to help protect Northland from unwanted pests have seen a senior Northland Regional Council (NRC) manager and his employer given separate awards at the inaugural New Zealand Biosecurity Awards.

Biosecurity manager Don McKenzie and council chairman Bill Shepherd received the Ministry for Primary Industries awards at Parliament last Wednesday. Mr McKenzie's Minister's Biosecurity Award acknowledged his "continuous outstanding contribution" to New Zealand biosecurity over more than a decade.

The NRC's long-running and multi-pronged Marine Biosecurity Programme also earned a highly commended award. Mr Shepherd said it was an honour to see both Mr McKenzie and the council recognised for their hard, often ground-breaking work.