28 December 2018

Media: Rotorua Daily Post
Topic: GLO Festival

Enquiry

I'm working on a preview story for the GLO Festival and I understand we need to get comments from the organiser through council?

Would it be possible to get a few new comments to the following questions?

- What are you looking forward to about the entertainment line-up for this year's event?

- Why do you think this will be a great event overall for families?

- Why do you think it's important to have a community event like this available for New Year's Eve?

Also just checking I have this right for the event's schedule?

4.30pm: Music and food trucks

6pm: Coco – movie on big screen

8pm: Live music continues

9.30pm: Fireworks spectacular

9.45pm: Evening concludes

Response

From event organiser Alia Ryan of Boost Fundraising and Events Limited:

"I am looking forward to seeing some of our youth on stage again this year, it’s so exciting to see young talent developing, and the 15 minute fireworks display at 930pm is always amazing"

"The priority for the Glo Festival is to deliver a safe, family-friendly, free event for our community and everything we’ve organised is focussed on that. We keep the festival smoke-free and alcohol-free. People are also asked to not bring gazebos or tents so that everyone has a great view of the movie and stage."

"Community events bring people together, GLO festival provides a safe, free evening for families, visitors and locals to celebrate the end of the year."

Schedule is correct, you could ad that the Rotorua Mega Fun carnival will be open for the evening too

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Media: Rotorua Daily Post
Topic: Roadside mowing on state highway at Rotoiti

Enquiry

We received a call from a Lake Rotoma homeowner about the height of grass on the verges and berms. He says in some places it is 1m and when he tried to get someone to fix it he was simply passed from business to business.

He tells me he rang lakes council who told them it was Higgins' problem as contractor. Higgins told him they only did work in areas with 80 km/h speed limits and the stretch concerned is a 70 km/h and referred him to another business I missed the name of. Then he was referred to Fulton Hogan who then referred him back to the council. He was then told it was the responsibility of Farm Smart Vegetation (I think) then finally NZTA.

After being passed around he's come to us in frustration.

So I was wondering if you can find out for me whose responsibility is it to mow the berms and verges at Lake Rotoma on SH30? The man I spoke to has concerns of safety as the grass is so long it's affecting visibility and leaving nowhere for pedestrians to walk. Is this a concern for the council too?

I'm also told the Lakes Community Board is involved and aware of the situation.

Following request for further details reporter clarified that she had spoken to the person who called for only a few minutes by phone the previous week and was yet to call him back to discuss further.

Response

From Infrastructure General Manager Stavros Michael:

Safety issues along state highways, including vegetation that may impact visibility, is the responsibility of the New Zealand Transport Agency but we are working together to resolve any issues that arise and cause concern for our communities.

We acknowledge there is some confusion. The matter has been brought to our attention and we understand that in the past a local mowed the area but has since moved away and now people are noticing the grass is getting longer. We are working with Rotorua Lakes Community Board and New Zealand Transport Agency to resolve the matter, including identifying any other areas in the district where this may be happening.

In recent years there have been similar issues at Okere and Mourea where State Highways dissect semi-urban communities. After discussions with Rotorua Lakes Community Board and Council, the Transport Agency has agreed to have its contractor mow these areas.

NOTE: Reporter subsequently advised that, having been out at Rotoiti and seen the road verges she would at this stage not be pursuing a story

Page reviewed: 05 Jan 2019 6:07pm