Seasons Greetings

Andrew Bayly – MP for Hunua
As I write this column, summer, the real New Zealand summer, is in evidence. Warm, dry weather, no wind, no rain. Everything we have been asking for. It doesn’t suit everyone, of course, the farmers and market gardeners would like some rain on a regular basis.
I hope you have some quality family time planned, whatever is special to your family. It’s a time to reflect on the past year, and set goals for the year ahead. I trust you have planned a special time together, wherever possible. With Christmas just around the corner, it’s important to plan your travel. Drive to the conditions, take regular breaks, and make sure you have a sober driver if you are celebrating. Take care in, on and around our beautiful beaches, lakes and rivers. And, of course, don’t forget to be sun-smart – Slip, Slop, Slap and Wrap when outdoors.
Thank you for all your support over the past year. I wish you and your family a happy festive season and safe holiday.

Angela Fulljames – Chair of the Franklin Local Board
Christmas can feel like a mad rush to the finish line with presents to buy, work to complete, food to prepare, events to attend, people to host and summer holiday plans to finalise.
Sometimes this busyness can be all too consuming and I think we tend to forget what really matters. For me it is about stopping in the moment, reflecting and being thankful for what I have.
There are many people in our communities whose circumstances are very different. Christmas is a good time to be extra thoughtful, to reach out and include others, support those who miss loved ones and make a difference to someone whether you know them or not. Over the holidays our family will spend some time together exploring some of the Hauraki Gulf islands such as Tiritiri Matangi and Rangitoto via our public ferries. However you spend your Christmas, on behalf of the Franklin Local Board members, I wish you an enjoyable, safe and re-energising Christmas and holiday break.

Andy Baker – Deputy Chair for the Franklin Local Board
I was travelling into the city last week on the train after having caught the bus from Drury as I now generally do. The sun was out, people were happy, I had a great chat with one of the train managers who had been doing that sort of job for 15 years and who wasn’t full of negativity and anxiety about the changes happening. Best of all my continued use of the public transport was justified as I looked out the window at all the cars with mostly one person in them, crawling along the motorway. And the thought that wrapped all those things up into one small and easy phrase? LIFE IS GOOD. But I guess that is down to my prevailing philosophy of life which is every day above ground is a good day. Some are better than others naturally but I cannot cease being thankful about where we live, who and what we have around us, what is available to us and the opportunities that exist. Yes we are lucky but as is often said, we make our own luck by taking those opportunities and how we view life. Obviously life is about balance so my often irritating optimism and positivity is balanced by those who are wired differently. Thankfully, for those who are negative, technology has provided through social media the perfect tool for them to let the world know how they think and how the likes of Government, Council, businesses and others are doing it all wrong and how they have all the answers based on such little knowledge. As we head into another festive season I have had the privilege to attend a few Christmas type events where people put all the negativity behind them and simply enjoy those around them, with plenty of laughter and cheer. It is a pity this festive spirit is sometimes bottled up only to be unleashed at this time of year. Is it because for many there are holidays and there is a release from our daily grind? Who knows, all I know is that individually we are not here for a long time, so I plan to get as much enjoyment while I am upright as I can. Much of that enjoyment and pleasure comes for me from being positive and happy.
This is an incredibly busy time for so many. Tensions are high, we are rushing about, it is Christmas chaos. So take a moment to consider what you say and do and how your actions impact on others. As Fred Dagg said “ We don’t know how lucky we are mate”! Have a safe and happy festive season everyone.

Bill Cashmore – Auckland Deputy Mayor and Franklin Ward Councillor
Hi everyone. I hope that you are enjoying the Christmas break and if you are having to work then we all thank you for your efforts . We all must bear in mind those who provide us with the essential services to keep us safe and well over the summer period when most us relax for a while. The Police, Fire Service, Medical and Hospital staff are our essential services but there is also those who look after our beaches, the Surf Lifesavers, those who still pick up our rubbish and recycling, they are busier than ever. There are the retail staff that still work in the shops and that sea side dairy rolling that summer ice cream for us. To all who are working we wish you well and hope that you get a good break during the forthcoming year. For those enjoying the summer holiday season. Embrace your family and friends for these are the memories that will last for ever. Drive with care and consideration for others. Be safe around water and please, especially watch out for children. Use sun block. Welcome in 2018 with a cheer for all the hope and promise a New Year brings. May 2018 bring you happiness and fulfillment.
Have a great one.

Kendyl Sullivan – Manager Pukekohe Business Association
On behalf of the team at the Pukekohe Business Association we would like to say thank you to the Franklin community for supporting our local businesses and the events and promotions that we ran throughout the year.2017 has been a busy year for the Business Association with many promotions and events happening such as the Voucher Booklet, Business Awards, Shop to Win, 12 Days of Christmas, and Christmas Scavenger Hunt to name a few. 2018 is shaping up to be an exciting year with new promotions, and some of our returning favourites as well! Make sure you keep an eye on our website and Facebook page to be kept in the loop. We would like to wish everyone a safe and happy holiday season.
The Business Association will close at 2.00pm on Thursday 21 Dec. and will re-open at 9am on 8 January 2018. Happy New Year!

Allan Sanson – Waikato Mayor
2017 has been an extremely busy but productive year at Waikato District Council that has seen us start planning the Long Term Plan. Much of our focus has been on planning for and managing the rapid growth we continue to experience in our district and improving our services. There is much we will need to do in 2018.
I would like to take the time to thank our Councillors and staff for a great year at Waikato District Council and acknowledge those on duty in our animal control, noise control, parking, roading alliance, waters and libraries teams. Without their dedication throughout the holiday period, we would not have the continuation of efficient services. Roads are already busy with the festive season. Keep safe as you enjoy the holiday season and spare a thought those alone or less fortunate. On behalf of myself and my wife Trisha, I’d like to wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, and be safe over the summer.

Sharlene Druyven  – Franklin Local Board and Waiuku Town Manager
Another year has come and gone and it’s at this time that we reflect on the happy, the sad, the good and bad things that happen in our community.
It’s that time of year that we reflect on the special folk we have lost but also celebrate the great things that we have all achieved. It has definitely been a challenging year balancing my Town Manager commitments with my Local Board role, but I am loving serving my community.
I would like to thank those who supported me during the past year and trust that I am doing my very best for the betterment of my ward. It is also heartening to see that locals are seeing the value bought to our community by the Waiuku Business & Development Association and the important role they play instigating initiatives and events for the economic benefit of our community and businesses. I would like to wish all of Waiuku and surrounding communities a very merry Christmas and a safe and prosperous new year. Please be kind to each other, do a good deed for someone and pay it forward. You will get it back in spades. Merry Christmas.

Emma & Yana – From the Post Newspaper
How good is that feeling of closing the page on our last issue of the year? As we sign off the completion of our Holiday Edition, it signifies the end of 2017.
On average, we have brought to our community 40 articles per paper, and that isn’t including the material that only goes through our website. Calculating that figure over 50 issues, we have published more than 2000 stories to our readers about our community. That is a lot of news!
In an ever changing climate, the power of print still remains strong, and we are proud to say that is because of you, our dedicated readers and loyal advertisers. You consistently provide us with the platform to share your news, your successes, your trials and your feedback through both the pages in print, and digital form. Balancing the two can often be difficult, but with your help, we are beginning to see how complementary both print and digital can be. Either way, we are capturing today’s news, photographing memories, and creating historic records of our community for the future generations to enjoy and reflect on. This edition is unique to us, as we take a trip down memory lane, and review the year that was 2017. In an environment that is constantly moving forward, we have both enjoyed reflecting on the stories that we have covered. We both agree that sampling Franklin’s award winning pies was our favourite story to cover this year. However, for Yana, being taken for a spin around the Pukekohe Race Track in a V8 ute, and interviewing the internationally recognised country singer, Scotty McCreery were another two highlights. For myself, being able to attend the New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards, and going on the beat with local Police as they completed a booze stop were two of many memorable events.
Ultimately, our team has worked tirelessly to provide Franklin with a community newspaper that educates and informs our readers with credible and trustworthy news. While at times we don’t always get it right, we’re lucky to have such a supportive community, who not only provides us with feedback on ways that we can improve, but also gives us that desire to.
From all of us here at the Post Newspaper, we would like to thank you all for your continued support, and wish everyone a safe and happy Christmas. We look forward to catching up in the New Year.

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