Home' Advocate Communications : Fiordland Advocate 5 November 2015 Contents PAGE XX
5 November, 2015
We’re all about the south
60 years of
Two recent grants have put the
Fiordland Trails Trust about 90
percent of the way to its first
The $520,000 first stage of the Te
Anau-Manapouri Cycle Trail should
be under way in early 2016,
buoyed by continued success with
major grant applications. The trust
received the proceeds from the Te
Anau Lions’ 45th annual Steptoe
Auction at Labour Weekend, as
well as a substantial grant from
Meridian Energy late last month.
Meridian Energy already gave
$54,000 to the trust for the first
leg of stage one – from the DOC
Visitor Centre to the Control Gates.
After further investigation the
first leg was revised to $97,000,
allowing wheelchair and buggy
access with a wider trail.
Trust fundraising coordinator
Rachel Cockburn said the Lions
donation was greatly appreciated,
and following Meridian’s previous
grant for the trail’s first leg, the
trustees were “absolutely blown
away for them to come back and
say they’ll fund the whole thing”.
“Our plan is to start in the New
Year. But we need some Christmas
presents from our community.”
Most major grant avenues had
been exhausted, and now it was
hoped the $53,000 shortfall
would be made up by supportive
members of the community.
Significant donors will be
engraved at the trail start, on
the southern shore of Lake Te
Anau. Donations can be made
Trails Trust approaches goal
Sunset on the Waiau River, site of the planned Te Anau-Manapouri cycle trail.
PHOTO: Kimball Chen / Kea Photography
Changes to immigration policy for
regional New Zealand is hoped to
streamline seasonal employment
for hospitality employers.
Immigration Minister Michael
Woodhouse announced on
Sunday that more residency
points would be awarded for
applications outside Auckland,
and a streamlining of the labour
market test would make it easier
for employers to hire migrants.
“While there will be more
incentives for skilled migrants
to move to the regions, they will
now need to stay there for a
minimum of 12 months,” he said.
“Streamlining the labour market
test, which has already been
rolled out in Queenstown, allows
employers to check directly with
Work and Income before lodging a
migrant visa application.”
Previously employers were not
involved in the Work and Income
checks on the availability of New
Zealanders for skilled jobs, and
these checks were not made until
a visa application was lodged. Now
employers would be able to seek
Approval in Principle ahead of the
busy seasons, clearing the way for
faster hiring of migrants.
A meeting was held in Te Anau
by business owners on Monday
morning, attended by Immigration
staff and Clutha-Southland MP
Mr Barclay said the changes
addressed many of the issues
faced by hospitality employers in
Te Anau, where the labour market
was unique and migrant workers
were essential in the peak season.
“Te Anau is sort of a special
case, when it comes to some of
those tourism roles,” he said.
“There are some outstanding
concerns which I’m going to go
away and talk with Work and
Income and Immigration about.”
Fiordland could benefit from
systems in place in Queenstown,
where employers were not
required to prioritise hiring New
Zealanders for certain roles.
Ideally, if the uniqueness of Te
Anau’s labour market could be
demonstrated, a similar exemption
list could be created to bypass
the labour market test, Mr Barclay
“That’s what we’ve got to do. I’m
going to be talking to Immigration
and to Work and Income about
whether or not they can do that.”
At this stage, employers should
establish ongoing working
relationships with Work and
Income ahead of their busiest
hiring times, he said.
“They know when their seasons
are, they know when they’re going
to need staff.”
Immigration New Zealand
Queenstown manager Neill
Rhodes said most visa processing
time was taken up dealing with
police certificates and medicals,
and this would be difficult to
But with a projected 46 percent
increase in tourism labour supply
over the next 10 years, there
would be further changes that
needed to be explored.
Internal discussions had covered
the potential for one visa to cover
multiple jobs that made up a total
of 30 hours or more per week,
Mr Rhodes said.
The Village Inn owner Richard
Wason said currently migrant
workers had to get a special
variation to work multiple jobs,
and secondary tax was another
barrier in the same scenario.
“I think it would be an advantage
for people to be able to work for
multiple employers without having
to get a variation.”
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