An update on Council news and activity information…
The access track that provides beach access to the Flower Pot at the road end of Tokopapa Street has slipped away. Due to the unstable nature of the bank and the potential safety risk to the public, WDC has temporarily closed this track until an appropriate solution can be found. An assessment has been carried out on all the tracks and work will begin soon to tidy up the remaining tracks and install new signage. 1_20170117_112638_resized_1
The Long Term Plan 2015-25 included a project to improve the Te Kuiti pedestrian bridge. Due to the complicated nature of the work involved in this project, we are considering various design and construction options. As a temporary safety measure, we have extended the barriers on the Rora Street side of the bridge off-ramp.
A project to provide new public toilet facilities in Benneydale, was included in the 2015-25 Long Term Plan. We have now worked through the design and tender process, and anticipate that the new prefabricated facility will arrive onsite within the next four months. We are considering the options for possibly utilising the existing concrete facility.
The condition of local roads changes over time, at different rates due to the environment, design, engineering of the road, and the types and frequency of vehicles using them. To understand and manage for these changes better, we undertake annual evaluations of local roads to prepare a long-term maintenance strategy for the roads, and the estimated cost to complete each project. Our total Capital Budget for this financial year’s Road Pavement Rehabilitation projects is $1,400,000. One local road that has underlying pavement issues made evident through potholes and depressions is Totoro Road, south of Piopio that is used as a bypass for State Highway 3. This road has many sharp bends which make it difficult for heavy vehicles to manoeuvre. We will be carrying out pavement rehabilitation work to approximately 3kms of this road from February through to April. The scope of the works includes a re-designed and stronger pavement structure, improved alignment and drainage, and retreating into the embankment to avoid issues with retaining structures. Maraeroa Road Work is now underway to extend the seal on Maraeroa Road to improve the access to the Pureora Timber Trail route. The expected cost for this project is $811,000. Footpath access In addition to our inspections, we receive service requests about potential access issues on footpaths. We are now doing repairs to identified footpaths, with a focus to improve the ease of access from the footpath onto the road. Work was completed just prior to Christmas on the footpath exiting the Ward Street railway crossing/intersection onto Rora Street (opposite the New World supermarket).
Saturday 1st April 2017. 10 am to 4 pm – Rora Street Te Kuiti. Crowds will flock to our annual event for a taste of rural life in the vibrant King Country. The Great New Zealand Muster is a fun family festival, which includes a sheep run event, and is held on the final day of the New Zealand Shearing Championships. The Muster attracts thousands of people to Te Kuiti with musical acts, creative demonstrations, amazing exhibits and of course the fabulous local craft stalls. This provides an ideal opportunity to fundraise or promote your local products and business to visitors and residents. You can download a stall/exhibitor registration form from our website or find out more by contacting our friendly customer services team on 0800 932 4357. Demand for sites is high, so we recommend you register early. Stall Registration forms and payment must be received before your site can be allocated.

Stall Fees Stall space fee, if paid by 10th March 2017

3m wide space: $60.00

6m wide space: $90.00

vans/trucks: $110.00

The following funding rounds take place this year. You can find out more information about the types of grants available on our website or by contacting our friendly Customer Services Team on (07) 878 0800.
March: Discretionary Grant funding applications close 1/03/17
April: No funding round
May: Creative Communities Grant applications close 19/05/17
June: Discretionary Grant funding applications close 1/06/17
July: DC Tynan Trust funding applications close 21/07/17
August: No funding round
September: Discretionary Grant funding applications close 1/09/17
October: Sport NZ Rural Travel Fund applications close 27/10/17
November: Community Partnership Fund applications close 10/11/17 and Creative Communities Grant applications close 17/11/17
December: Discretionary Grant funding applications close 1/12/17
The Community Partnership Fund aims to ensure that residents of the Waitomo District have opportunities to contribute to the community they live, work and play in. This fund aims to ‘help our community help itself’ by offering access to funding and support to groups working on community initiatives. Council discussed and agreed to the 2016 Community Partnership Funding allocation of $25,000 to the following applicants:
Applicant and Grant Amount
Mokau Museum and Art Gallery (Tainui Historical Society) $5,000 +gst. Towards the upgrade cost for their building.
Piopio Primary School $3,600.00 +gst. Towards Upgrades to their Multi-Purpose Room.
Te Piruru Papakainga Marae $1,800.00. Towards upgrades to the Marae bathroom facilities.
Benneydale Hall Incorporated $4,700.00. Towards a heating system for the hall.
Piopio Playcentre $1,000.00. Towards the creation of a mud play area.
Te Kuiti and District Historical Society Incorporated $8,900.00. Towards remedial building restoration and Conservation products for perishable exhibits.  
Total: $25,000.00 (plus GST where applicable)    
We are excited to announce that the ‘Balloons over Waikato’ festival will once again make an appearance in Te Kuiti. Families will enjoy getting up close to some amazing hot-air balloons. So mark the calendar and bring the family out for a very special evening, bought to you by Waitomo District Council in conjunction with Balloons over Waikato. The event will be held on Friday 24th March, 6.00pm – 8.00pm at the Te Kuiti Domain.
There are a number of projects taking place (or recently completed), to tidy up areas in the main street and revitalise our public gardens.
  • Bollards have been placed at the Te Kumi Road rest area and the gardens were tidied up prior to the holiday break.
  • Minor work was completed outside of the Japanese Gardens to improve the area.
  • The public gardens located around the Shearer Statue and carpark are being revamped as part of our ongoing garden maintenance programme.
  • The Railway Station platform was concreted recently, providing a smooth walking surface and a tidier appearance to the overall area.
Central Government has announced they are rolling out faster internet to more than 150 additional towns as part of the second phase of the Ultra-Fast Broadband (UFB) programme. Around 423,000 New Zealander’s in both rural and urban areas, will benefit from improved connectivity. Council had made an application on behalf of our towns for UFB to be brought here. Te Kuiti and Piopio are amongst the towns included in the Waikato region for the UFB installations (to be completed by 2024). Residents and businesses will have access to world-class broadband, adding to the value of our economy and ensuring the district is a vibrant place to live, work and visit.
We provide a level of service to ensure our playground environment and equipment are safe for children to play on. The equipment is maintained and in some instances renewed when old equipment is no longer safe or fulfilling its purpose. Overall WDC’s playgrounds received a 93% compliance rating with the New Zealand safety standards in the 2016 audit completed by Park Central Consultants. Group Manager Community Services Helen Beever is delighted with the result which ranks WDC number one out of the Council’s included in the audit process. “The excellent rating confirms the great work that we are doing to improve and maintain our District’s playgrounds,” says Mrs. Beever. The purpose of the audit is to inspect the playgrounds, rate their condition and to measure how well we are complying with New Zealand Safety Standards.
The Library was busy over the holiday period with many visitors and library members borrowing books and making the most of our services, and 25 children enjoyed taking part in our Summer Reading Programme. We have made some changes to our children’s area to make it more inviting and easier for younger library members to access appropriate reading material for their age. The new classics collection includes many wonderful titles including Little House on the Prairie, Peter Pan, Robinson Crusoe and Harriet the Spy. In January we hosted two special events at the Library. Stu Duval joined us for a display of his cartoon drawing and storytelling. Trevor Sills of Simply Magic (pictured below) thrilled the audience with his impressive magic tricks. We look forward to hosting more of these types of events in the future. We now have a kit collection available to hire. You can get your sewing skills on point with the sewing machine, or keep the kids entertained on long journeys with our Travel kit (contains two portable DVD players, Rubik’s cube, headphones, Magna doodle and travel game books). Get the family together for a competitive game of Giant Connect Four, also ideal for birthday parties and other events. We also have an unplugged family fun kit – these are an excellent way to encourage everyone to turn off their devices and to get active. This kit contains a rugby ball, cricket set, and other outdoor fun activities. Library members can borrow these kits for $5.00 for three days to one week. The next time you visit the Library, check out our range of games and dvds. Games are $5.00 for one week, console games are $6.00 for one week, and dvd’s range from $3.20 to $5.50 and vary from three days to one week hireage. We also have jigsaw puzzles and board games that will provide hours of fun for the whole family. Are you looking for resources to assist with your study or homework? We provide access to thousands of high-quality electronic publications including Britannica Library Edition, journal articles, and genealogical resource Ancestry.com. To use EPIC Databases, you will need internet access and your Library Card. Visit the Library web page www.waitomo.govt.nz/library. If you require further assistance, we have a helpful guide available online, or alternatively you can phone the friendly Library team on (07) 878-1028. We are open Monday to Friday 10 am to 5 pm, and Saturday 9.30 am to 12.30 pm.
Quick tips for water conservation outdoors. All of the water that flows into homes connected to the town water supply, is good enough to drink. That’s right – the water in your toilet, washing machine, hose and faucet all comes from the same place, the Water Treatment Plant. It has been treated and tested to be clean and safe for human consumption. The next time you turn on the tap, flush the toilet or run a household appliance, remember that all the water you use is precious. Do your best to use it sparingly.
  • Use a broom to sweep sidewalks and paved areas. Add what you sweep up to a compost heap.
  • When washing the car, use a bucket. Limit the use of the hose to a quick spray at the start to loosen dirt and grime and when you’re done to rinse off soapy water. If you can, wash the car on a lawn to soak up the run-off water.
  • A swimming pool cover can cut evaporation by as much as 90%, reducing the need for top-ups.
  • To check for swimming pool leaks, mark the water level at the skimmer. Check the mark 24 hours later to see if it’s gone down.
  • Mow your lawn less often, or at a higher level. Taller grass shades the soil keeping it cooler.
  • Use mulch on your garden to discourage weed growth, reduce the need for herbicides, pesticides, and fertilisers. Mulch can reduce evaporation by as much as 70 percent!
Every effort you make to conserve water will make a big difference. For more quick tips visit www.waitomo.govt.nz/waterconservation
The filter renewal phase of the Te Kuiti Water Treatment Plant upgrade is on track for completion. The final concrete filter has been demolished and the floor prepared for the installation of the fourth stainless steel filter (currently undergoing final assembly). Water supply levels are acceptable and there are currently no concerns in regard to the level of consumption across the four water supplies in the District. Mokau, Piopio and Benneydale are on Level 1 – Conservation: Use sprinklers between 6am – 8am and 6pm – 8pm. Hand-held hosing is allowed anytime. Te Kuiti is on Level 3 – Restrictions: No sprinklers allowed. Hand-held hosing only. 1_IMG_4570
Microchipping has proven to be very successful in tracing owners of lost dogs all around New Zealand, helping to reunite dogs with their owners. Under the Dog Control Act 1996, the following dogs must be microchipped:
  • dogs registered for the first time after 1 July 2006
  • unregistered dogs impounded after 1 July 2006
  • registered dogs impounded twice after 1 July 2006
  • dogs classified as ‘menacing’ or ‘dangerous’ after 1 December 2003
There is a one-off cost of $20.00 to microchip your dog at the Clinic. Your dogs microchipping certificate will be recorded in the National Dog Database (which includes registration information) helping to provide a permanent way to identify a dog and link it to its owner. To find out more please contact us on 0800 932 4357 or email info@waitomo.govt.nz.
We undertake a bird control programme at the Te Kuiti Wastewater Treatment Plant (TKWWTP) as part of the Resource Consent. Although the ponds continue to prove popular for a large population of waterfowl, they are an undesirable habitat because of the immediate risk to bird health from avian botulism, and the risk of disease transmittal to other nesting or feeding areas. The feeding pattern of the bird population at the TKWWTP also has a negative impact on neighbouring farms. Our programme runs through to March and includes monitoring and reporting of the waterfowl population to Waikato Regional Council. We use an acoustic deterrent device to discourage the ducks and swans from populating the pond. The loud bang created by the device may be heard randomly but should not cause concern, as it is harmless. The device is not used overnight and on weekends.