Home' Northern Outlook : April 6th 2013 Contents 12 April, 2013
CENTRAL SOUTH ISLAND FARMER
COUNCIL SUPPORT: National president of the Rural Delivery Contractors
Association, Gavin Free, addressed the council -- which led to the submission.
Council speaks out
over cut to deliveries
By MAT KERMEEN
SELWYN DISTRICT Council has put its weight
behind stopping New Zealand Post dropping daily
After being addressed by national president of
the Rural Delivery Contractors Association, Gavin
Free, councillors approved a submission to recom-
mend New Zealand Post maintain a minimum six-
day-a-week delivery, particularly in rural areas.
In a submission to New Zealand Post -- signed
by Selwyn mayor Kelvin Coe -- the council outlined
its concerns over a drop in rural mail frequency
and urban areas that were formally rural and do
not have post shop facilities. The current deed of
understanding between New Zealand Post and the
Government stipulates a minimum of no less than
five days a week for 95 per cent of New Zealand.
But the deed, set in 1998, is up for renewal, with
a proposed change to a minimum delivery rate of
just three days per week.
New Zealand Post is seeking flexibility for the
future, and said it had no immediate plans to
reduce delivery frequency -- but the future of daily
mail is uncertain.
Mr Free said five-day-a-week delivery would
hurt'', but was probably viable'', although any-
thing under five-day delivery would not be.
The council is concerned the changes will nega-
tively impact many members of its community
who rely on rural contractors for newspapers,
courier parcels, community fliers and notices,
machinery parts, medicines, bread and milk.
Mr Free was concerned about the social loss. He
said mail contractors were the eyes and ears of a
community like Selwyn -- checking on elderly,
keeping an eye on someone's house when they
were away and delivering community notices at no
The council emphasised that many rural house-
holds did not have broadband and struggled to
manage tasks online, so relied heavily on mail.
Its submission raised the safety aspect of mail
contractors being forced to deliver their current
volumes in three days, meaning working longer
hours -- which could become dangerous.
Ultimately the council feared a reduction to
three-day-a-week service would mean fewer peo-
ple choosing to use the postal service, which would
lead to further reductions in frequency.
New Zealand Post has ruled out a receiver-pays
rural delivery fee for basic postal services.
Submissions are being reviewed by the Ministry
of Business, Innovation and Employment.
TWENTY EXCITING and innovative businesses
are in the lineup for the Rural Women New Zea-
land Enterprising Rural Women Awards 2013.
The judges face the challenging task of choosing
finalists in the four entry categories: Love of the
Land (sponsored by Agrisea), Help I Need Some-
body (sponsored by Telecom), Making it in Rural
(sponsored by Fly Buys) and Stay, Play, Rural
(sponsored by Access Homehealth).
The category winners will compete for the title
of supreme winner.
This is the fifth year we've run the awards,''
Rural Women national president Liz Evans said.
Each year it's rewarding to see the diversity of
businesses successfully run by women in rural
areas and the significant inputs they make into
the wider economy.
Through these awards Rural Women New Zea-
land aims to celebrate their success and raise
awareness of women's entrepreneurship, which
helps to grow dynamic rural communities.''
Entries in this year's Love of the Land category
include a fresh produce and gourmet food busi-
ness, a combined sheep and beef, orchard and
farm forestry operation, a native tree nursery, a
blueberry grower and product retailer, and a
In the Help I Need Somebody section there is a
butchery and deli, a hair and beauty salon, a skin
and sun protection product company, a workplace
health and safety service, and an online Kiwiana
Competing in the Making it in Rural is a merino
fashion designer and retailer, a children's book
author and illustrator, an exporter of animal
products for the supplements market, a glass art-
ist, a soap and massage oils business, and a natu-
ral pet care products manufacturer.
Stay, Play Rural entrants have plenty to offer
with farmstay and homestay businesses in the
running, as well as an astronomy tourism venture
and a luxury lake cruise enterprise.
Award winners will be announced on opening
night of the Rural Women New Zealand national
conference in Christchurch on May 23.
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