Home' The Mirror Central Otago : January 9th 2013 Contents 9.1.13
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Time on the job could mean pay rise
By JESSICA MADDOCK
Central Otago's mayor hopes a
nationwide survey of local gov-
ernment politicians' workloads
will lead to fairer pay for the
district's community board
Councillors throughout the
country have been asked to
provide the Remuneration Auth-
ority, which sets their salary and
fees, with information about how
much time they spend on the job.
Central Otago District Council
Mayor Tony Lepper said that
until now elected members'
remuneration had been based on
the capital values of properties in
the area they represented, and the
The authority now recognised
this was an inaccurate way of
determining elected representa-
tives' salaries, he said.
While community board work-
loads were not being scrutinised
at this stage, he had asked them to
also provide information to the
He hoped it would strengthen the
council's case for ''fair compen-
sation'' for the district's com-
munity board members.
They had a great deal more
decision-making power and res-
ponsibility than community
board members in other areas.
When local government through-
out the country was restructured
in 1989, the Central Otago District
Council chose to give its com-
munity boards the power to make
important decisions for their
communities, including water
and wastewater services.
This meant Central Otago com-
munity boards had responsibility
for millions of dollars of ratepayer
funds, while in most other areas
community boards dealt with
only thousands of dollars.
Mr Lepper said the council
planned to seek the highest salary
possible for board members from
the Remuneration Authority.
The survey of councillors' work-
loads showed they spent an
average of 13 hours on the job a
At present Central Otago's mayor
was paid $76,295 a year and
councillors earned $6147. Vincent
and Cromwell community board
members were paid $6723 and the
chairperson $7683 on top of that.
Community board members in
Maniototo and Roxburgh earned
$3361 and the chairperson an
Music work keeps
By GRANT BRYANT
Class act: Joe Cowie (left) works the mic while
brother Caleb works the decks. The duo have a
multitude of music projects on the go, and are
preparing for a US and Canadian tour next year.
multitasker Joe Cowie
has had a year of
ing widespread inter-
net acclaim, perform-
ing to huge crowds and
preparing for a tour of
the United States and
Canada this year.
Cowie has a string of
music projects but the
most prominent is
Blackplanet, a breaks
and drum 'n bass duo
consisting of Joe and
his Wellington-based brother
Blackplanet's releases have
gained decent sales on iTunes, but
playing live is the real thrill.
''Playing live is where everything
comes out,'' Cowie said.
''All those hours and days spent in
the studio perfecting a track
means that you can really unleash
it all in front of a crowd and really
get them them moving, and seeing
a room full of people dancing to
your music is a real thrill.''
However, Blackplanet is only one
part of the Cowie brothers', and
Joe's, prodigious musical output.
K-Lab is primarily Caleb's
vehicle, but as Analogue MC Joe
forms a vital vocal backbone to
the act, although other MCs and
vocalists are used.
Caleb toured K-Lab in Canada and
the fans gained through a
constant stream of releases, and
the live tour, means both brothers
are prepping for a Canadian and
US tour in 2013. ''It looks like it'll
be an eight to 10 week tour of both
Canada and the United States,
which should be an awesome
experience, and help raise our
Joe's band, Pass The Sauce, will
also be hitting the live circuit
again, after a year's hiatus.
''It's definitely time to bring the
live vibe back to Queenstown
after a year off, and we'll be
hitting World Bar's balcony for a
series of live sets throughout the
Joe's solo project Lil Massive, a
sample-based hip-hop act featur-
ing live musicians, made its live
debut at the Summerlands festival
at the Lake Hawea Hotel, where
K-Lab also played a set.
Toilets flush with extra funds
Next up: Toilet beautification project manager Sally Smith gives an indication of
which way the canopy will look when the next stage of the project is done.
Photo: BARBARA WITHINGTON
By BARBARA WITHINGTON
Twelve months after new public
toilets opened in Roxburgh,
sufficient funds have been found
to ''beautify'' the amenity.
Beautification work project man-
ager Sally Smith said it had
already been a three-year project
and she was looking forward to
seeing it completed.
''When we saw the first design it
was definitely a bloke's thing,
very bland, and we thought we
should be able to come up with
something better than that,'' she
Mrs Smith, joined by Toni Birtles,
Janet McDonald, Brigitte Pater-
son and Linda Moir, let their
imaginations fly and were very
pleased with the result, which will
see a ''living wall'' of plants along
the front fac¸ ade of the toilets, a
winged canopy roof to protect
those waiting from the elements,
and a water feature by local artist
''People are already taking photos
of our toilets, looking as good as
they do with the flower boxes in
front, so when all the work is done
they will just love it.''
It is hoped contractors will start
the structure after the holidays,
with the plants for the wall and
the art work taking perhaps six
months to complete.
The project cost more than $80,000
and has been funded by donations
and grants from Central Lakes
Trust, Transpower Community
Care, Otago Community Trust
and local providers.
''With the cycle trails almost fin-
ished, we'll see a lot more people
stopping to use the toilets, now we
just need the community board or
the plan group to come up with
bike stands,'' Mrs Smith said.
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