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Saturday, February 11, 2012

Red Cross - Winter Assistance grant

Information on the Winter Assistance grant is now available.

The purpose of the grant is to
... assist vulnerable households living in homes significantly damaged by the earthquakes or who have had to move into damp or hard to heat accommodation.
This grant is for up to $400 in total and will be made up of four monthly payments of $100 which will be paid directly to electricity retailer outlined on the application form should you meet the criteria.
More information is available here, along with a downloadable application form.
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Friday, February 10, 2012

Avonside goes completely Red

Now that we  have joined the Red Zone there are a whole set of new questions about what next and what if.

Information about the announcement is here. Also on that page are downloadable maps of each of the areas affected by the rezoning.

The CERA website has other information as well:

On the financial side, the website www.sorted.org.nz has information for Red Zone residents called the Red zone financial decision guide. This and other information is available from their website here.

The most important information/advice is don't rush into things. Talk it over with someone. Live dangerously - invite people around for a BYO fish, chips and diet coke session.
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Thursday, February 9, 2012

Report on the collapse of the CTV building

The report on the collapse of the CTV building has been released. Media statements from a number of sources have also been released.

The report is here, just over half way down the page.

Click on the name of the person or organisation making a release to be taken to the appropriate site.

A few initial responses to the report (click on the headline):

Three 'critical factors' in CTV failure: The Canterbury Television Building would have had a "much better" chance of staying intact if it had met building codes, says an engineer who worked on an inquiry into its collapse.

CTV designer says the report is inadequate: The head of the engineering company that designed the Canterbury Television building says a report on the building's collapse is ''technically inadequate''.

Police: Charges over CTV collapse not certain: The report is now with police to determine whether a criminal investigation is necessary. Assistant Commissioner Malcolm Burgess told a news conference the case is unprecedented and charges of criminal nuisance or even manslaughter are by no means a given.
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Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Mayor Bob Parker - a clown

Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee is reported by the Press today as describing mayor Bob Parker as a clown. The Press article is here.

The diagnosis was made in the context of responding to mayoral comments made last week. According to Bob, Treasury are looking to the council to raise rates, or sell assets, to recover earthquake costs. The offending part of the mayor's comments reported in the Press on the 1st of February (here) was that
Under the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority Act, the Government could force the city to raise rates to cover costs, or sell off assets, he said.
"CERA has the ability to say this is how you have to meet your costs, and can make us take measures such as raising rates or selling assets."
Mr Parker would not reveal the source of the comments.
As Gerry knew, and Bob obviously did not, the CERA legislation prohibits the Earthquake Recovery Minister from directing councils to set rates. Sadly this little episode has the potential to increase the pressure to have unrepresentative local government implemented in Christchurch.
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Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Jane Bowron's - When immoral uncertainty is our reality

Sometimes a writer puts a few words together and encapsulates what many have struggled to say. Jane Bowron did this for me in her article When immoral uncertainty is our reality in the Press on Saturday (6th). You can read it here.

Giving her opinion on the anti-Tony Marryatt pay-rise protest, and the attempts by some to play down the nature, size, and value of the protest, she looks at who was involved and the backgrounds they represent. Here is part of her view on those who were there and their motives.
However, the mainly grey and white-headed protesters outside the council's Hereford St premises are part of a growing revolution sick and tired of a narcissistic management ruling class that mouths jargon and platitudes instead of providing vision, swift, common sense solutions, and leadership.
Finally, in a way I could never manage, she sums up the mayor as though looking through my eyes:
Mayor Bob Parker, who dresses like a middle-aged escort and was Sideshow Bob and on the way out before the last elections, has been both saved and destroyed by the intervention of the quakes.
Gifted he may be at trotting out coherent and comforting platitudes, but residents are now seeing through his gift of the gab and are disgusted at his desertion of post to leave town for 10 days with his lady wife (he has called her the most beautiful mayoress in the world) to drum up tourism in Asia at a time when the peasants are revolting.
A great read.
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Monday, February 6, 2012

Life in Avonside - Part 2

Again, this is for those outside Christchurch, or who don't read the Press.

Press writers Rachel Young and Ben Heather have articles in today's Press entitled Couple on lonely street after others quit homes (here) and Residents want their lives back (here) respectively. The first article is about the last people remaining in Robson Ave, the second on the difficulties of waiting for rezoning in Cowlishaw Street.
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New Zealand Journal of Geology and Geophysics - Preliminary report on the February 22nd earthquake

The New Zealand Journal of Geology and Geophysics have published a preliminary report on the February 22nd 2011 earthquake. Entitled Mw 6.2 Christchurch earthquake of February 2011: preliminary report it provides an in depth analysis (very technical) of what occurred, and the consequences for land and buildings.

A copy of the report is available as a free download here.
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