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Mayor Neil Brown, and Chief Executive Hamish Riach, contribute articles to the Ashburton Courier and Ashburton Guardian on a number of topical issues.
Last week, the Council and the Crusaders announced we would be putting our support behind local mental health services this weekend at the highly anticipated Crusaders versus Hurricanes pre-season match in Ashburton, and I urge you to get behind this worthwhile initiative.
Looking back on 2019, there is much to reflect on for our community, and not all of it I can mention in just a few paragraphs, but I'd like to touch on a few things.
Twenty-nineteen has been a productive year for the Council as we've worked to deliver upgrades and core services for the community.
It seems hard to believe that another year is now close to an end, but as we look back at the year that was, it's also great to see some wonderful things coming up on the horizon.
Natural disasters and emergencies seem to have a very effective knack for pointing out our vulnerabilities and this past weekend was a case in point for the South Island. But in the face of the difficulties presented to us, our community and emergency response agencies really stepped up to deal with the situation at hand.
The Christmas season has officially arrived in the Ashburton District, and it all kicked off with a fantastic Light Up the Night event last Friday evening.
Summertime will officially kick off at the end of this week and with the warmer conditions and holiday season set to get underway, now is the time for dog owners to start thinking about the wellbeing of their pets in the months ahead.
Each year, a special opportunity arises for Ashburton's young people to be a part of a team where they can lead and advocate for their peers on matters that are important to them.
In a little over two weeks, a special festival will officially launch our district into the Christmas season, and this year, the annual Ashburton Nights of Lights festival has been dialled up another notch for our community to celebrate the festive spirit even more.
Earlier this week, Council staff and representatives from our local emergency services hunkered down for a day of training on responding to an Alpine Fault magnitude eight event.
Last week, I had the honour and privilege of joining my fellow Councillors and Methven Community Board members in swearing in to officially become the Ashburton Districts 2019-2022 term of Council. It was a very special occasion and it was wonderful to share it surrounded by friends and family.
As we begin entering the final few months of the year, it's safe to say that there are no signs of things slowing down. For many, it's business-as-usual right up until the festive season, and this is certainly true for the Council.
The big news this past week has been the outcome of the local government elections, and with the preliminary results released over the weekend, we are almost at the point of certainty about which people will be leading our district for the next three years around the Council table.
We are now in the final days of the local body elections, and come Saturday afternoon (12 October) Ashburton District residents will have their first indication of who their representatives around the Council table will be for the next three years.
Last week, the Council announced a major upgrade to Ashburton's wastewater infrastructure will soon begin. The $7 million Ashburton River Crossing and Pump Station project will see a new, larger wastewater pipe installed under the Ashburton River from Milton Road South and connected to a pump station that will be built next the wastewater treatment plant in Tinwald.
Once every three years, an important occasion rolls around for communities across the country that determines the priorities, decisions, and outcomes that will affect local people.
The Rakaia Salmon site – with its landmark replica salmon sculpture, is undoubtedly one of the Ashburton District's most iconic features, attracting a lot of interest from tourists and passing travelers.
Visit any business around the Ashburton District or even look around your own workplace and you'll likely discover that there is no shortage of diversity around our local workforce. No matter the industry or profession, our district attracts people from all walks of life to live and work here.
New Zealand will celebrate Māori Language Week, an occasion that has been on the nation's calendar every year since 1975. In recent months, the Council has been taking active steps to increase our own cultural competence and understanding of our country's indigenous language.
Next month, Ashburton is holding a new event specially designed to bring employers and job-seekers together to connect, train and gain valuable insight from industry professionals.