All entries by this author

Mum and daughter star

Jul 26th, 2019 | By

Grace Raynel’s moving poem about her late mum, her guiding light, made her the supreme winner of the Waikato District Libraries 2019 Matariki competition.

Grace, from Ngaruawahia, said the competition was fun to do.

“I’m really happy that my work [see below] was appreciated. I worked on it and am pleased it paid off.”



Rates notices in mail

Jul 24th, 2019 | By

The Waikato district’s general rate has risen 5.19% this year and ratepayers will see what that means in notices in the mail next week.

Individual rate increases will vary depending on ratepayers’ property type, value, location and the services that are available to them.

Rates notices will also include targeted rates that apply to the property, and a number of them have risen.



Choosing a garden winner

Jul 22nd, 2019 | By

Choosing the right plants for your gully or garden is a challenge.

Not only are we spoiled for choice with thousands of species to choose from but it’s not unknown for a plant to thrive in one corner of your garden and sulk in another.

Even expert gardeners often rely on trial and error for best results.



Candidate nominations open

Jul 19th, 2019 | By

Nominations have opened for local body elections, including those for the Waikato District and Waikato Regional councils.

It’s time to consider whether you think you can make a difference in your community.

Waikato District Council Chief Executive Gavin Ion urged prospective candidates to get their nominations in now.



The word on email programs

Jul 18th, 2019 | By

What constitutes a good email program?

Well, partially that it’s not made by Microsoft, for starters. I know a lot of people use Outlook, and I’m not against it, necessarily, but there are so many problems associated with that program I’d need an entire chapter of a book just to explain them.



Pastime for yacht restoration

Jul 12th, 2019 | By

Inside a corrugated iron shed deep in Tamahere, a 132-year-old kauri lady sits cradled by a boat stand.

Tamahere is not the oddest place this 45ft yacht has lived.

Thirty years ago, she was moored next to a Christchurch tavern before being sabotaged and sunk.



Children have fun playing sports and don’t need to satisfy adults’ ambitions

Jul 10th, 2019 | By

Playing sports has clear social, physical and mental health benefits for children. But evidence shows that youth sports in Western societies have become increasingly controlled and regulated by adults, which takes the fun out for many children.

Participation rates by adolescents have been declining and recent statistics released by the Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) show a 60% surge in sports injuries for children in the 10 to 14 age group over the past decade in New Zealand.



Warmer home grants open

Jul 10th, 2019 | By

The Government’s Warmer Kiwi Homes Programme is now offering grants for insulation and heaters to low income, owner-occupied homes.

The grants cover two‐thirds of the cost of installing insulation. Grants for approved heaters (efficient heat pumps, wood burners and pellet burners) are capped at a maximum of $2500.

To be eligible for a grant:



Maori reps to join WDC

Jul 8th, 2019 | By

The Waikato District Council is planning to introduce external specialist Maori representatives to its principle council committees after October’s local government elections.

Chief Executive Gavin Ion said that the council and iwi were keen to improve the opportunity for Maori to contribute to the council’s decision-making.



Retirement? Baloney & bananas

Jul 6th, 2019 | By

Don’t mention the ‘R’ word to Generation ‘U’ (unretired).

The population of New Zealanders reaching retirement age will double in the next 15 years as hundreds of thousands of ‘baby boomers” officially cross the line. But increasing numbers are choosing not to leave their posts, writes Tamahere’s Venetia Sherson …