Author: Admin

Rainy weekend may bring more disruption

MetService is forecasting a wet end to the week and into next week, which may cause more disruption to areas affected by recent storms and flooding.  Saturday, light showers and rainfall are expected. Sunday and Monday may bring heavier falls in localised spots across the region that could continue until the end of next week.  Auckland Civil Defence and Emergency Management Director John Dragicevich says that while showery weather is not unexpected in autumn, the council is conscious that more rain comes hard on the heels of a particularly wet and difficult few weeks.  “Forecasts are still being fine-tuned...

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Time running out to have your say on Auckland’s budget

Aucklanders are being urged to have their say on the council’s 2017/2018 budget before consultation closes next week. The budget sets out $1.4 billion in investment across Auckland, and there are several topics the council is looking for feedback on before consultation closes at 4pm on 27 March. These include: Level of rates increases Rating stability Targeted rate on accommodation providers allowing the use of targeted rates on new developments alongside existing growth charges to pay for new infrastructure A living wage for council staff Local board priorities. Auckland Mayor Phil Goff says Aucklanders should take the opportunity to...

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Traffic Notice 24-30 March : Southern Corridor Improvements

Traffic notices provide a brief overview of likely traffic disruptions for the following week. Full closures are also advertised in the Weekend Herald. Traffic notices are complemented by monthly construction updates and quarterly newsletters. ALREADY IN PLACE Narrowed lanes and 80 km/h speed limit northbound between the Papakura Interchange and Hill Road. Narrowed lanes and 80 km/h speed limit southbound between Orams Road and the Papakura Interchange. TRAFFIC NEXT WEEK Northbound Sunday 26 March – Monday 27 March – Night closure of the full northbound motorway from the Takanini Interchange to Hill Road. This includes closure of the northbound on-ramp at Takanini (Great South Road). Southbound Sunday 26 March – Thursday 30 March – Night closure of the full southbound motorway between the Manukau Interchange through to the Takanini Interchange. This includes closure of the Redoubt Road on-ramp, Lambie Drive eastbound on-ramp, and SH20-1 Link. UPCOMING WORKS (dates may be subject to change) 8:00pm Saturday 1 April – 8:00am Sunday 2 April – Night closure of the full southbound motorway from Manukau Interchange through to the Takanini Interchange. This includes closure of the Redoubt Road on-ramp, Lambie Drive eastbound on-ramp, SH20-1 Link, Carendish Road eastbound on-ramp, and eastbound Puhinui on-ramp link to SH20. Refer attached detour map. Sunday 2 April – Tuesday 4 April – Night closure of one lane northbound from Walter Strevens Drive Bridge to the Takanini...

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Apprenticeship scheme tackles skills shortage

Two career pathway programmes in the Waikato District are helping to address the skills shortage in the New Zealand infrastructure industry following the graduation of 21 trainees and apprentices last month. The Downer Basic Civils programme, between Downer and Waikato-Tainui, in partnership with the Ministry of Social Development, has resulted in 7 previously unemployed members of the community gaining a qualification and employment. Downer and WDC are partners of the Waikato District Alliance (WDA) a joint venture formed to manage and maintain the roading assets of the district. The Basic Civils Programme aims to attract capable people into the industry and give them career pathways along with industry qualifications. Last year Waikato-Tainui and Downer met to discuss the possibilities of engaging with unemployed members of the community and offering work opportunities. “We have taken this programme and worked together with Downer to ensure it is contextual to the needs of our Iwi. The two week schedule encompassed an introduction to infrastructure framed by the work of Waikato-Tainui in the community,” says Kawena Jones, Employment Lead at the Waikato-Tainui Careers Centre. “To get the most out of the programme, the team at the Waikato-Tainui Careers Centre ran a robust pre-employment process to ensure those who made it through had the very best chance to take on a career in infrastructure. We wanted to ensure this investment worked for everyone” says...

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New drought measurement index launched

Minister for Primary Industries Nathan Guy has welcomed the launch of a new tool to monitor drought in New Zealand’s regions. Developed by NIWA with the support of the Ministry for Primary Industries, theNew Zealand Drought Indexuses the best scientific information available to determine the status of drought across the country. It is a tool to acknowledge the onset, duration and intensity of drought conditions. “Until now there hasn’t been one definitive definition of a drought,” says Mr Guy. “Applying the latest scientific knowledge and technology like this index does, helps us to know exactly what is happening and can better inform producers, agri-businesses, councils and the Government to make the right decisions at the right time.” The New Zealand Drought Index (NZDI) combines four commonly-used drought indicators: The Standardised Precipitation Index (SPI); Soil Moisture Deficit (SMD); Soil Moisture Deficit Anomaly (SMDA); and Potential Evapotranspiration Deficit (PED) to show levels of dryness and when that turns into drought conditions. A map of New Zealand and time series plots for each region are updated daily and freely available on the New Zealand Drought Monitor webpage. “Droughts are not uncommon in parts of New Zealand, but when they extend for many months or affect wide regions they can have a major impact on rural communities. “It doesn’t all finish the first time it rains either, because the on-farm effects of drought...

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Good samaritans save swimmer in Port Waikato

At 1.37pm Police received a call to say two swimmers were in trouble in the water at Sunset Beach in Port Waikato. A 20-year-old man has entered the water and got into trouble and a 20-year-old woman has gone into help him.  However the man was able to make his way back to shore but the woman was swept further out to sea. A 43-year-old member of the public who was also at the beach saw what was happening and went to assist.  The good samaritan swam out to the woman in trouble, who was in a lot of...

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