Mayor: Sadly, war is not confined to the past

Published: 28 April 2022

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Anzac Day provided a sobering reminder about the enduring impact of war and conflict, and it was humbling that hundreds of people around our district attended services to pay their respects to the men and women who have served to defend New Zealand.

We honoured the ultimate sacrifice of our district’s citizens, who are immortalised on 520 white crosses, and we hope that our own sons and daughters will never know the first-hand horrors of war.

Our courageous service personnel have served in times of war and peace, and left our shores with no guarantee of a safe return. Sadly, we only have to see what is happening in Ukraine to know that war is not confined to the past.

I was proud to see many people returning in person to Anzac Day services, and others who honoured the spirit of the day with poppies and flags on their front fences.

Another sombre note this week was the release of the coroner’s report regarding the tragic collision at the intersection of Hepburns and Mitcham Roads three years ago that claimed three lives. We know this report will bring that sad event back into focus for the family, and our thoughts are with them through this tough time.

We welcome any recommendation that will help keep people safe on our roads, rural or urban. The give way sign at this particular intersection was changed to a stop sign following the incident, and additional warning signage installed. We’re now reviewing other similar intersections across the district.

It’s also a reminder to those of us who travel along rural roads, that while many of our intersections are not busy places, we must always be vigilant and approach them with caution.

At Council, the business of consulting on our Annual Plan continues, with submissions accepted up until 5pm on Friday 6 May.

We are asking for your feedback on work we plan to do in the next financial year and at the start of this week, more than 30 people had made submissions. All the details about what Council is planning, and what other people have said so far, is available at

Specifically we are asking if you want a reduction in the levels of some Council services, to reduce a planned 9.4 per cent rate rise, and if we should be using $1.7 million of forestry reserves on more roading repairs.

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