Kapi-Mana News : November 20th 2012
TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 20, 2012 PORIRUA CITY & TAWA www.kapimananews.co.nz INSIDE: OPINION 10 EYE ON CRIME 17 WEEKLY WORKOUT 26 CLASSIFIED 65 SPORT 72 Hits down -- funds cut Agency shifts its focus By KRIS DANDO Porirua East used to have a very high rate of children being knocked over by cars but this has come right back in the last few years. Much of that is down to the things Mark [Kairua] does. Litea Ah Hoi, Porirua city councillor The frequency of children being struck by cars will rise again if the city s road safety co-ordinator has to endure further funding cuts, says a Porirua city councillor. Litea Ah Hoi said it was embarrassing that Mark Kai- rua s work in the community could be hamstrung by the NZ Transport Agency almost halving its funding for the city s road safety programme after a recent review. She raised the issue at a council meeting and said Mr Kairua s valuable work has come into focus since the death of Junior Ianuali on October 26. Porirua East used to have a very high rate of children being knocked over by cars but this has come right back in the last few years. Much of that is down to the things Mark does. By NZTA withdrawing fund- ing, it just puts more of our young ones at risk. As a council which has done a lot for road safety in the past, we need to let NZTA know that this situation isn t good enough. Porirua City Council will get $240,000 over the next three years from the agency for its road safety programme -- $200,000 less than in the previous triennium. The transport agency s central region director Jenny Chetwynd said the money it allocated to councils is calculated on a risk basis and demonstrable benefits consistent with the government s Safer Journeys programme. There was now more of a focus on high-need areas such as Manukau and the Rimutakas, Ms Chetwynd said. Mr Kairua s salary -- about $50,000 -- is paid from the coun- cil s budget. We appreciate the disappoint- mentofPCCbuttherealityis. . . we need to direct the bulk of it to communities which have a worse road safety record, said Ms Chetwynd. We are saddened by the death of Junior Ianuali and we are con- fident the funding we are provid- ing will help PCC provide targeted safety programmes to prevent future tragedies like this. Mr Kairua said budget discus- sions with the agency were con- tinuing and the $240,000 was likely to be confirmed this month. He would continue to deliver the best road safety initiatives he could. I m still holding the regular talks in schools, doing things like helping Papakowhai School with their walking bus and working with the [Porirua] Vikings on our road safety campaign, Mr Kairua said. I am looking at alternative funding avenues as well, and I do very much appreciate the funding I do get from the council. Before Junior Ianuali, the last fatality on Porirua s roads was in 2010. Four people died each year in 2009 and 2008. Ms Ah Hoi, whose son was hit by a car several years ago, said it was heart-breaking looking at Junior s coffin, and it put things like budgets into perspective. I sat with the family and felt that as a councillor we didn t do enough. I hate pointing the finger at NZTA but I think it needs to be aware that parts of Porirua need more investment in terms of road safety measures and education through someone like Mark. Gala a quacker day for entertainment By ANDREA O'NEIL Quacking good fun: Plimmerton School pupil Joshua Baxter, 10, is set for a much-anticipated plastic duck race at this Saturday's school gala. Money raised will go towards the school's swimming programme and a playground revamp. Plimmerton School has its ducks in a row for an action-packed gala this weekend. The ever-popular plastic duck race in the school swimming pool is set to thrill the crowds again, alongside perennial favourites like the pupils decorated mystery jars, the dunking machine, an inflatable commando course and a car to smash with hammers. The school has also hatched new entertainment, like rides in the Westpac rescue helicopter and a Wet n Wild ride on a grunty motorbike and a jet ski. Our gala is probably the one that has the most amusements, says parent and gala co-organiser Robyn Boswell. It s very exciting -- it s the first time we ve had the helicopter here. Ms Boswell is praying for fine weather for the weekend for all the outside activities planned -- a beach dig, a spud-gun shooting gallery, jeep rides, and a Toilet Toss of loo rolls into a dunny. For the less adventurous, there will be cakes, books, toys and bric- a-brac for sale. A variety show will feature the talents of students and staff, as well as the singing voices of mayor Nick Leggett and Mana MP Kris Faafoi, Ms Boswell says. The school has held its gala for longer than anybody can remem- ber, but more than 35 years, she says. Last year more than 3000 people visited and the school raised $33,000. This year the gala will fund- raise for a playground upgrade and the school s swimming pro- gramme. Being by the seaside, Plimmer- ton School puts lots of effort into teaching children water safety, Ms Boswell says. The school s 500-odd kids get up to 10 lessons from swimming instructors in the lead-up to summer. Swimming competency is a really big focus for the school. Every child is either being taught to swim or improving their swimming skills. Water will be a huge part of kids lives this summer, so safety is paramount, says parent and gala co-organiser Julia Ham. The majority of us live around here and if it s not here it s on the inlet. Lots of families might have a boat. Plimmerton School gala, Saturday, November 24, 11am to 3pm. School Rd, Plimmerton.
November 13th 2012
November 27th 2012