Posts by RJW

  • Radiation: Views of the Week May 23,

    Nice to have your picks back, Fiona!

    Auckland • Since Jul 2008 • 6 posts Report

  • Southerly: How I Became a Grumpy Old…,

    I have so very much missed your posts, and wondered long and hard what became of your house. So it is very exciting to read the latest news and see the marvels you have wrought. Bravo that man. Take pride in your work, and a little time out to enjoy it ....while you revise the list of what remains. And do please keep posting! (and perhaps lease your meadow to some local sheep who will both keep it trimmed and fertilised and generate a little income.

    Auckland • Since Jul 2008 • 6 posts Report

  • Southerly: Now I Am Permitted,

    So happy to hear that you are now able to legally inhabit the moved house -- I have been wondering what happened for such a long time!
    It's great to know your period in limbo is finally ended.

    Auckland • Since Jul 2008 • 6 posts Report

  • Hard News: Auckland City Nights,

    The message that all the improvements aren’t a result of the Cup but that the Cup allows us to see the benefits of them all at once – is clearly a “key message” in the Auckland Council Communications Strategy: Mayor Len Brown cheerfully and heartfeltedly delivered the very same message during his rousing speech which officially opened Q theatre on Friday night. Of course, it’s a good news message, and we can indeed see all the benefits right now…. and the city really is going to rock and be a very entertaining place over the next few weeks. And if you aren’t into rugby, try a show at Q theatre, 305 Queen Street – there’s a great roster of shows coming up from 7 September check shows here. There's a great bar/cafe - Citizen Q -there also, with a resident cocktail artist -- so you might even want to drop by for a drink.

    Auckland • Since Jul 2008 • 6 posts Report

  • Hard News: When the Weather is the News, in reply to BenWilson,

    I have to agree with Ben -- HRV plus proper insulation makes a huge difference to keeping warmth inside the house in cold weather -- and humidity out in hot steamy weather. Well worth the investment -- clean dry air, warmth retained, power bills reduced.

    Auckland • Since Jul 2008 • 6 posts Report

  • Island Life: John Key: ambitious enough…,

    Here is more information from SPARC to clarify further what David has said. This coimes from a letter from Chief Executive Peter Miskimmin.

    1. The Mission On initiative is a cross-government project, and SPARC is only one of the participants -- it is a joint vernture by SPARC, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Youth Development.

    2. The actual budget for Mission On comes from a separate government Budget allocation to the sport and recreation budget.
    There is $5.1 million allocated for 2008/2009 for one of the Mission-On initiatives which targets two age groups – 5-12 year olds and 13-24 year olds. The purpose of this initiative is to invest in technology based concepts that engage these age groups and encourage them to improve nutrition and increase physical activity.
    The breakdown of the $5.1 million is as follows:

    · $1.6 million has been budgeted to the Mission-On website ( This figure includes updating the content using interactive technology, promoting the site and general maintenance costs.

    · $3.5 million has been budgeted for implementing a technology based strategy (concepts still in development) to communicate and encourage 13-24 year olds to improve nutrition and increase physical activity.

    Also to clarify the misleading allegations continaed in John Key's speech re SPARC admin costs (!!!), again quoting Peter Miskimmin:

    It is not correct that $35 million ‘never makes it outside the Wellington office.’

    SPARC’s internal operating costs for 2007/08 are approximately 12% ($12.7 million) of SPARC’s total budget ($105.7 million).

    Since SPARC was established in 2003, administrative costs have decreased as a proportion of expenditure from approximately 18 percent to 12 percent of total expenditure.

    The figure of $35 million being discussed in the media as “internal” or “administrative” costs actually covers the cost of several of SPARC’s programmes that are delivered directly to the sport and recreation sector. This includes $21.2 million that SPARC budgeted to invest in 2007/08 on initiatives such as:

    · Resources for SPARC’s programmes including Sport Fit, Active Movement, Active Schools, CoachForce, SPARC’s volunteers and officials programme, He Oranga Poutama and Green Prescriptions.

    · Push Play. The campaign is complemented by support activities at a local level through regional sports trusts and local authorities.

    · Seminar and leadership programmes for staff in regional and national sport and recreation organisations.

    · Capability resources for sport and recreation organisations and clubs. Eg. Disability Tool Kits, Club Kit – an online resource to help volunteers run their clubs, a range of resources to develop organisational capability, manuals for primary and secondary school sports coordinators.

    Overall, in addition to the $21.2 million, SPARC has budgeted to directly invest over $71 million into the sport and recreation sector for the year ended 30 June 2008.

    There are not 47 people earning over $100,000 at SPARC. The correct number is 38 out of 94 employees for 2007/2008.

    SPARC’s jobs are sized by Hay Group to ensure salaries are consistent with the market rate.

    Auckland • Since Jul 2008 • 6 posts Report