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Upper Hutt Leader : May 25th 2011
44 UPPER HUTT LEADER, MAY 25, 2011 To order your own copy of photos in this paper, or other CCN titles, check out: pix.ccn.co.nz Only one left unsure about meters By JOEL MAXWELL There is near-unanimous political will around the council table to introduce water metering in Kapiti. A Kapiti Observer survey of all councillors asking their position on meters revealed only one with mixed feelings'' about user-pays for water as a vote looms. Strong supporters include veteran councillor Diane Ammundsen, who was keen to see a user-pays system in Kapiti. Water is a precious com- modity... people don't appreciate what they don't pay for,'' she said. Hilary Wooding was another happy to state her support for metering -- particularly as a way of making people more aware of the value of water in Kapiti. But Waikanae ward councillor Tony Lloyd still had concerns. He has mixed feelings'' after issues raised with him about metering and had asked for more information from council staff about costings. I need to have an answer on those before I'm really even pre- pared to discuss them.'' This week councillors were to hear submissions on the proposed change to the long-term plan, introducing a water meter charge. If councillors accept the change, with a vote set for June following the hearings, meters could be installed from July next year and be in place by September 2013. Charging would start from July 2014. Most councillors rejected the suggestion that metering would open the door to privatisation of the water supply. K Gurunathan said the problem had been resolved for him with proposed changes that would make privatisation more difficult after metering than it is now. We're heading to a regime where it's harder to privatise because it would be highly politicised, and the issue is put through a more rigorous demo- cratic process.'' Peter Ellis had no problem with meters. A lot of older people, people in two-person households, will find they're using a lot less water than what they're paying for now.'' Nice day for black wedding Black Friday joy: Matthew and Bodil Shepperd tied the knot at their ''black'' wedding, before flying off on their broomstick. By TASHA BLACK Most brides are a little dis- heartened when dark clouds and rain threaten their big day, but for Bodil Shepperd it just made the day more perfect. Mrs Shepperd and her hus- band Matthew, who describes himself as a little bit dark, tied the knot on Friday May 13. It's lucky for us, number 13,'' said Mr Shepperd. So much so, they both have the number 13 tattooed on their fingers. The ceremony was held in Paraparaumu Beach cafe 180 Degrees and guests and the cele- brant dressed in black. Black balloons were scattered around the room and black cupcakes were served. The couple met backpacking in Australia just under a year ago and Mr Shepperd, who is from Britain said it was love at first sight. The wedding was on a back- packer's budget, but it turned out perfect'', he said. It's just another adventure to add to the bank,'' said Mrs Shep- perd. The couple plan to go back to Britain for a white wedding. Scientists team up to save our native wildlife By FRANCES COOK Zealandia and Victoria Univer- sity are combining to save New Zealand's native wildlife. There have been links between the two since 2006, and sanctu- ary and university scientists this month signed a memorandum of understanding. The partnership allows scientists from Victoria Univer- sity's Centre for Biodiversity and Restoration Ecology to increase their knowledge of re-homing, which involves moving threatened wildlife to a safe area. Centre director Ben Bell said previous success stories had involved kiwi, kaka and tuatara, but such studies had been car- ried out on an ad-hoc basis. The memorandum gave a framework that directed interested researchers to species which were difficult to re-home, such as Maud Island frogs and female bellbirds. As well as staff doing research, it gives students the opportunity for short-term and very relevant research,'' Pro- fessor Bell said. Zealandia was a great resource for researchers, he said. Having this place on our door- step is so valuable; we have access to rare species that other- wise we would have to travel a long way for.'' Positive effects of the research were already visible, and included the increase in native birdlife throughout Wellington, he said. Victoria University PhD student Helen Taylor is researching the reproduction of little spotted kiwi, and uses Zealandia for her research. She said she relished the opportunity to work at the sanc- tuary so much, she left Britain to do so. I have to do a lot of field work. I've been coming up here five days a week. Doing that on an island is really hard,'' she said.
May 18th 2011
June 1st 2011