Charges after boats broken into

A 37-year-old man has been arrested and charged following a string of break-ins on boats moored in Whangārei and Ruakākā.

George Andrew Imms, from Waipū, faces four charges of entering a ship without authority with intent to commint a crime on July 12, 17, 19 and 22. The boats were named Much More, Game King Extreme, Hunters Child and Serenity. Imms was remanded in custody and will appear again in Whangārei District Court on August 10. Police said investigations were continuing.

Hear from Northland candidates
Voters in the Northland electorate have a chance to hear from candidates vying for their tick at a debate in Russell next week. Candidates taking part are Mark Cameron (Act), Shane Jones (NZ First), Matt King (National), Willow-Jean Prime (Labour) and Darleen Tana Hoff-Nielsen (Greens). The debate will start at 5pm on Friday, August 14, at the Duke of Marlborough. Numbers are limited so email functions@theduke.co.nz to secure a seat.

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Your chance to plant
The Puketi Weedbusters — a volunteer group which carries out weeding and planting around the Puketi Forest recreation area and campsite — are holding a planting day from 9am to noon on August 11, followed by a cuppa and shared kai at Puketi Hut. Plants are provided by the Kerikeri Shadehouse volunteers. Anyone keen to lend a hand should contact Fleur Corbett on fcorbett@doc.govt.nz.

Roads reopened
Whangarei District Council announced yesterday all roads were open again in the district, though some lanes were still closed for repair. It's estimated road repairs will cost $3.5 million following last month's storm. Northland Transportation Alliance maintenance lead Mike Batchelor said the focus had shifted to clearing slips that had reduced roads to one lane. Once all roads have been cleared of slips, work will begin on a large number of potholes and blocked stormwater drains that have been reported. There were 782 jobs logged from the beginning of the storm period to the end of July. Last month's storm caused an estimated $8m in damage to the district's roads, pipes, parks and reserves. The council will be applying to the Government for funding to meet costs where possible.

Nurses may strike
More than 3400 primary health care nurses and medical receptionists/administrators across more than 500 practices and accident and medical centres are taking part in a ballot for strike.
Northland has around 170 members in 30 workplaces covered by the PHC MECA.
The ballot will run until August 12 and is for a complete withdrawal of labour for eight hours on September 3.
New Zealand Nurses Organisation industrial adviser Chris Wilson said this has never happened before in these primary health care workplaces and is a clear indication of the frustration workers feel after nine months of negotiations.
Wilson said an experienced nurse covered by the Primary Health Care multi-employer collective agreement (PHC MECA) is currently paid 10.6 per cent less than their DHB colleague with the same qualifications, skills and experience.

Learn about the long-term plan
Northland Regional Council is holding a series of pop-up stalls to help shape its Long-Term Plan (LTP) 2021-2031. NRC chairwoman Penny Smart said the events offer residents a chance to have a chat with councillors and staff about what the council should be focussing on.
The public input will help steer early development of the plan though there will be another chance for feedback early next year. The events are at: Whangārei Growers Market, August 8, 7am-10am; Waipu Markets, August 9, 9am-1pm; Kerikeri Packhouse Market, August 15, 8am-1.30pm; Paparoa Village Market, August 15, 9am-noon; Whangārei Growers Market August 22, 7am-10am and Kaitaia Farmers Market August 22, 8am-noon.