Posts Tagged 'Local Body Elections'

News Update

Kia ora

Check out the latest batch of museum news that has been uploaded today, online here (you need to be logged in to the members’ area to view).

Local council elections lead this week, with lots of museums in the news as well. Some of the election results will have flow-on effects for museums and galleries, and of course we’ll all be watching to see how Auckland Mayor Len Brown, the new Auckland councillors, and multitude of community board members, manage the transition to the new city structure.

Some turn-ups include: Annette Main becoming Mayor of Whanganui District, pipping former Deputy Mayor Dot McKinnon after Michael Laws stepped down; Nelson sitting Mayor Kerry Marshall only made fourth place against local businessman Aldo Miccio, a first-term councillor campaigning on a platform of possible regional amalgamation; Whangarei Mayor Stan Semenoff was ousted by Maurice Cutforth, who promises a more open council that takes more than 10 minutes for its monthly meetings; former TV handyman-presenter Dave Cull tipped out Mayor Peter Chin in Dunedin; in the Far North nothing much changed with Wayne Brown keeping the Mayoralty against a strong challenge split between Sir John Goulter and Laurie Byers; and unsurprisingly Bob Parker was returned as Mayor in Christchurch after gaining high profile in the wake of the Canterbury earthquake. In Wellington we’re waiting until all the special votes are counted to hear if Kerry Prendergast is returned for a 4th term, or ousted by the long-term Greens councillor Celia Wade-Brown.

Last week we had the Paul Henry affair(s), in which neither TV presenters and managers, nor our Prime Minister, read the public mood correctly when responding to politically incorrect statements. And this week the media went the other way, with a storm in a teacup brewing very quickly when the media got hold of Te Papa’s invitation to a behind the scenes collection tour which asked pregnant or menstruating women not to come. The blogosphere went wild, with so many ill-informed and badly written comments that it was just laughable. Check this blog post for one of the more balanced views.

Congratulations to the reopened Navy Museum, sitting pretty in Torpedo Bay, Devonport. There was a very well-received open day on Saturday, and the museum is now open 7 days a week, including a café. See the news coverage in our roundup and visit the museum website here.

We also hear that the NZ Furniture Symposium, hosted by Southland Museum & Art Gallery last week, was a great event. We expect to bring you a report of that in the next Museums Aotearoa Quarterly.

We hope to see many of you at Te Papa next week at the National Digital Forum conference, with guest speakers Michael Edson (Smithsonian, USA), Nick Poole (Collections Trust, UK) and Dan Hill (Arup, UK). It’s not too late to register here.

Back in the office, we’re busy with MA11 conference planning, with 3 international guest speakers expected. As soon as they are confirmed we’ll bring you more details…

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News Update

Kia ora

Check out the latest batch of museum news that has been uploaded today, online here (you need to be logged in to the members’ area to view). This is a slim edition due our special ahead-of-schedule news last week (which now has an index online to view).

The media over the last week has shown us a roller coaster of images and news from Canterbury. We are all extremely relieved that no lives were lost and there was relatively little damage to museum and gallery collections. Serious damage will need to be dealt with at Kaiapoi Museum and the Logie Collection at Canterbury University, and many heritage buildings are damaged or still awaiting assessment. We also feel for all the private owners and collectors whose treasures have been lost.

However, major institutions such as Canterbury Museum, Christchurch Art Gallery and the Air Force Museum have come through almost unscathed. The art gallery staff are this week cleaning up after hosting civil defence HQ, in readiness for reopening to the public along with other Christchurch institutions such as Ballantynes.

There is a huge job to be done to repair and clean up across the affected region, not to mention the emotional and psychological healing that will be required. It is great to see groups such as NZ Conservators of Cultural Materials and NZ Institute of Architects stepping up and offering help, as well as the Canterbury Disaster Salvage team and many other individuals and organisations. National Services Te Paerangi has several useful links and contacts up on their website worth checking out. We wish everyone involved a speedy recovery.

Meanwhile, the wheels of government continue to turn. We notice there have been significant changes made to the LEOTC funding model this year, and it will be interesting to see what this looks like for the museum sector in both the short and long term. The most obvious change is a move away from annual tender rounds based on specific ‘learning areas’ of the curriculum, allowing proposals for any learning area to be submitted. The other notable change appears to be a greater regional emphasis in the selection process. Also any new contracts entered into over the next two years will have an end date of June 2013 to bring all contracts into the same cycle and ” to pave the way for the new contracting environment”. There is information about these changes on the LEOTC website here, and the current tender document (number 30798) is available on the government electronic tendering service website here, for download.

And in Auckland the framework for the new Auckland City is now in place, ready for the new council to take up the reins following the October elections. The Board for Regional Facilities Auckland, the new ‘super-CCO’ group responsible for Auckland Art Gallery alongside the zoo and various stadia and events centres, has been announced, Appointees include Sir Don McKinnon as Chair, with Dame Jenny Gibbs as Deputy Chair. Regional Facilities Auckland is expected in future to also be responsible for the Auckland Museum and MOTAT, as well as Voyager Maritime Museum and others currently under the Auckland Regional Amenities Act, further details are available online here.

There have been Mayoral debates in several cities, and some interesting statements by candidates. So keep in touch with goings-on in local politics and make sure you vote for your local councillors who actively support arts, culture and heritage. Many candidates have profiles on the national election website or visit www.localgovt.co.nz for links to all local councils as well as news and other useful links.

Best wishes to all, especially our friends in Canterbury,

ka kite,

Phillipa and Sophie

News Update

Kia ora

Check out the latest batch of museum news that has been uploaded today, online here (you need to be logged in to the members’ area to view).

Today’s news includes lots of south island stories of funding for education programmes in South Canterbury, Canterbury Museum’s Antarctic exhibitions, and controversies over trees and artworks in Nelson, as well as news of Te Papa’s next European art blockbuster.

The Museums Aotearoa Board had such a friendly welcome in Nelson that we’re really looking forward to getting the programme together for MA11 next April. Peter and Julie and their staff at Nelson Provincial Museum and The Suter were great hosts – and they arranged glorious sunshine all the time we were there! It was lovely to meet people from some of the other museums in the region, and hear about their activities and plans. We’ll definitely need to stay in the area for an extra couple of days around the conference so we can visit the great museums and galleries in Golden Bay, Murchison, Motueka, Collingwood, Picton and Blenheim as well…

Next up Phillipa is visiting Northland, to join the Northland Museum Association meeting on 24/25 September. Other guests include local and national politicians, so there is sure to be some lively discussion. And I have to admit that I didn’t know there was a mercury mine at Ngawha, which will be very interesting to visit.

While we’re out and about, we’re noticing the campaign billboards springing up along our highways. The local elections may bring significant changes in direction in some places. We’re all watching to see how the mayoral race for the Auckland super-city plays out among 22 contenders. In other areas there are likely to be shifts of power as well. Michael Laws is doing a ‘Putin’ in Wanganui, stepping aside from the mayoralty but hoping to retain a place – and presumably influence – on council. Christchurch may well get a new mayor, with high profilers Bob Parker and Jim Anderton slugging it out with 12 other hopefuls. Voting papers for the postal ballot will be sent out after 17 September, and must be returned by 9 October. Local Government On Line has created a website for profiles of all candidates, just enter your address at www.elections2010.co.nz and see who you can vote for (although not all candidates have put up info). You can also look on your local council website, select from the list at lgnz.co.nz/lg-sector/maps/index.html

And while you’re online, tomorrow is international ‘ask a curator’ day on Twitter. Several NZ museums are participating: City Gallery, Voyager, Waikato Museum, Fresh Gallery Otara, Auckland Museum, Wallace Arts Centre, Christchurch and Auckland Art Galleries – well done for getting involved. So prepare your questions and be part of the action tomorrow! Check the official website for details: www.askacurator.com

ka kite,

Phillipa and Sophie


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