Lifesaving clubs pipped
Northland's surf lifeguards missed out on the awards at the Surf Life Saving Northern Region's Awards of Excellence. The awards, which had to be held virtually given the Covid-19 restrictions, celebrate the best of the 2019-20 patrol season in the region, which covers the upper North Island. Surf Life Saving Kariaotahi received top recognition at the awards. The club won a full suite of prizes at the annual awards evening, which was held online on Tuesday, claiming the title of Yamaha 2020 Club of the Year, Toyota Financial Services Best Patrolled Beach of the Year, CSE Genesis Innovation of the Year and Toyota Financial Services Rescue of the Year. Northern region lifeguards had a successful season, performing 212 rescues and 375 patient assists.
Byelection postal votes
Voters who haven't yet had their say in a Te Hiku Community Board byelection are urged to send off their postal ballots by this Friday to make sure they arrive in time to be counted. The byelection for the Whatuwhiwhi Subdivision is contested by Eddie Bellas, Boyd Rupapera, Whetu Rutene and Bill Subritzky, and is being held to replace the late, long-serving Lawrie Atkinson. Voting forms can be dropped off at Te Ahu in Kaitaia until noon on September 16, when voting closes. As of Wednesday just 712 people, or 30 per cent of eligible voters, had sent in their voting documents.
Calling all buskers
"Hatea Me Hearties" Buskers Festival is calling for musicians, artists and performers of any kind to come along and get involved. Food market, craft market, music, street art, circus, theatre and more on the Whangārei Loop Walkway - Sunday October 11 from 11am-2pm. Contacts: Street Artists: Mike Lyon/Rachel Thorn - firstname.lastname@example.org. Craft Market: Hayley Clark - email@example.com. The Buskers Festival is part of the Whangārei Fringe Festival in October.
Civic hub official opening
Kawakawa's Hundertwasser-inspired Te Hononga civic hub will be officially opened on October 9. Two ceremonies will be held with a whakatuwheratanga at dawn and a ribbon-cutting in the mid-morning. Members of the public are invited to add to the atmosphere by dressing up in a culture and heritage theme. The building will incorporate a library, gallery, council service centre, public workshop spaces, toilets and showers. The building itself is mostly complete but work is continuing on the parking area and landscaping.
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Affordable housing appeal
Whangārei District Council is backing local government calls for the Government to bring in housing affordability legislation – but the decision to do so wasn't unanimous. WDC wants an affordable housing working group to be set up. This would be made up of relevant and affected councils, central government agencies – Ministry of Housing and Urban Development, Kainga Ora and the Ministry of Social Development, iwi and the community housing sector. It also wants a national policy statement for affordable housing. The council's affordable housing calls were made at an extraordinary council meeting on August 13 in Whangārei. They come as part of a majority decision on whether to make these calls. Councillors Phil Halse and Vince Cocurullo voted against the motion.