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Upper Hutt Leader : July 18th 2012
Wednesday, July 18, 2012 SERVING YOUR COMMUNITY SINCE 1939 MAIDSTONE FUNDRAISER Quick off the mark 3 SUCCESS FOR SASH MAKERS First export order to US 17 PARALYMPICS PARTY Send-off for Mary Fisher 43 Letters 10 Real Estate 21-35 Arts 32-33 Motoring 37 Classifieds 38-42 Sport 44-48 Our Zeus shot home like a bolt Back from the dead: Debbie McGowan thought she had lost her dog Zeus to the Akatarawa River after she had to leave him behind in her vehicle when it became stuck in a ford. Photo: ANDREW MACKAY By ANDREW MACKAY Akatarawa woman Debbie McGowan was still coming to grips with a harrowing escape from a flooded Akatarawa River and leaving dog Zeus behind when he appeared on her front doorstep. Ms McGowan, 44, was rescued from her four-wheel-drive after it became stuck in the swollen river about 3.30pm on Sunday. She had been feeding her four horses on the other side of the river and when crossing the ford to return home became stuck. Firefighters were able to rescue her through a window but her terrified staffordshire bull terrier would not move. I said I can't leave without my dog'.'' He was scared of water and was not going to be coaxed out, she said. When I had to leave him behind I felt completely horrible.'' She was treated by staff in an ambulance then returned home. I was quite sure he was going to drown,'' she said. She was just coming to grips with what had happened when he arrived on the front porch. He came to the front door, it was amazing,'' she said. I heard his collar shaking at the door and thought I was hearing things. But I ran to the door and there he was.'' She could not believe he had trotted all the way home, three hours after the ordeal. Aside from looking a little soggy, he was otherwise unscathed. I had just given him up for dead. I thought he would stay in that car, it would get washed down the river and he's going to drown. He was so happy to see me -- he rescued himself. Even though he would have hated every moment, I should have trusted he would find his way home.'' Neighbour Dave Tunbridge said he had called emergency services after he realised he would not be able to rescue Ms McGowan himself because the water was too deep for his truck. Mr Tunbridge said he just happened to have glanced out the window and spotted the top of her tailgate. Panel could restructure local govt By JIM CHIPP CONTINUED Page 4 A document due to be released this week could herald the end of some, if not most, of Wellington region's councils. Sir Geoffrey Palmer chairs a panel with the task of consulting residents and interested parties on how the councils could be restructured. It aims to release an issues paper this week which puts the consultation into context and poses a number of questions, Sir Geoffrey said. People will be offered a range of ways to express their opinions, including online submissions, or directly at public meetings, and there will also be a bang-the- table'' online discussion forum allowing people to put their views easily and quickly, no matter how long or short they were, he said. It [any new structure] has to be democratic first and foremost. It has to be effective.'' Local government in New Zea- land faced many complications and most people did not under- stand what it did, Sir Geoffrey said. They think it collects their rub- bish, takes away their sewage and delivers water, and really is not very important.'' However, many council activi- ties affect people more than that, including transport, planning and economic advocacy, he said. Legislation on its way through Parliament will change the way local government amalgamations can happen, making them signifi- cantly easier. We are in an era of change in local government.'' Sir Geoffrey noted that last local government rejig took place in 1989, and 23 years later the process was beginning again. In many ways the Auckland
July 11th 2012
July 25th 2012