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Friends of the Otaki River - Newsletter
May 2013

More Business Support Joining Us
It is with pleasure that I use this first FOTOR newsletter to update members on the activities and projects that are being carried out by this active and progressive group. The Otaki River is in a good condition, and we continue our strong partnership with Greater Wellington Regional Council to oversee the maintenance of the river. The Otaki Flood Plain Management Plan is to be updated, but has been delayed till 2014 while further research is carried out. All flood protection work is considered to be in good repair.
The drought, however, has caused moisture stress levels within many of our plants, and some died over the dry months. Thanks to the staff of Greater Wellington Regional Council, an irrigation programme was carried out on the more recent plantings.
The annual River Walkover conducted by GWRC continues to attract excellent numbers, 125 last year. This September event gives FOTOR members and general public an opportunity to view works carried out on the river by way of general maintainance and implementation of the Flood Plain Management Plan.
The active Wednesday Volunteer Group enjoys excellent attendance, which is reflected by the 5000 seedlings in the nursery, these are all of superior quality and ready for planting out this season. A special thank you to our industrious secretary, Trevor Wylie, who has produced this newsletter.
Chairman Max Lutz
Membership Now Numbers 225

FOTOR membership numbers are 225 currently. Our members have almost doubled in the past two years. The Executive Committee numbers eighteen consisting of elected representatives from the
membership at the Annual General meeting and appointed representatives from various groups and local authorities. The current Executive is:
Max Lutz, Chairman, Eric Matthews, Vice Chairman, Trevor Wylie, Secretary, Peter Pope, Treasurer, Ron Clouston, Barry Cole, Ted Gimblett, Pat Hakaraia, Alan Jones, Barry Mansell, Christine Papps, Dr Cathy Strong, Peter Wareing, Leonore Winterburn, Margaret Bayston (Keep Otaki Beautiful) Mike Cardiff (KCDC) Penny Gaylor (Otaki Community Board) Margaret Niven (Royal Forest & Bird) Carl Lutz (Riparian Owners) Rupene Waaka (Iwi) Nigel Wilson (GWRC) and Graeme Winterburn GWRC Works)
The Executive meet five times a year, in February, April, June, August and November. The Annual General Meeting is in October. Any matters that members wish to raise can be discussed with members of the Executive at any time.

Tree Planting Programme - Winter Season 2013

Now that the dry season is ended there are lots of trees to be planted. We have been fotunate in gaining funding to purchase seedlings that our trusty Wednesday group have nurtured to the stage they can now be planted out.
Currently FOTOR has approximately 5000 potted plants in the Riverbank Road nursery in preparation for the winter planting programme. 780 of these have been prepared by the students of Waitohu School, Otaki. Three planting days are programmed, you are welcome to join any or all of them.
Diary these dates now. The holes will be pre-dug. Just bring yourself, your friends, a spade and sturdy footwear for heeling in the plants. Tea and coffee are available at the end of each planting session.

  • Saturday 18 May 10am
    Quin supplied materials to cover our nursery, making it more practical for winters. Everyone is invited to come and help plant 900 native plants at the Otaki River estuary. Meet at the estuary viewing platform at the southern end of Kapiti Lane.

  • Wednesday 5 June 10am (Arbor Day)
    Fonterra has provided the funding for Waitohu School to nurture and plant out 780 native plants. Come join Fonterrra, Waitohu students, parents and local dairy farmers. Meet at the entrance to the Chrystall's Bend walkway, east of the bridges.

  • Sunday 30 June 10am
    Honda has financed seedlings for us over the past many years. Meet at the entrance to Chrystall's Bend walkway to help plant out 1000 natives.

    Has Your Address Changed?

    With the assistance of Greater Wellington RC staff we endeavour to keep our membership addresses
    and information up to date. If your address has changed, our information is incorrect, you prefer communication by email or you no longer wish to be a member, please be in contact with the secretary.
    Trevor Wylie: Tel. 06 3648918 or email

    We Are Now A Charitable Organisation
    Last year FOTOR applied for registration as a Charitable Organisation. Charities Commission required a change to our 'Winding Up' rule in our founding constitutional rules. The change required being to recognise the Charities Act 2005 and this was done at the AGM October 2012. The rule change was notified to the Registrar of Incorporated Societies and the Charities Commission granted Charitable Organisation status in January 2013. Number CC48694.

    With this status any cash donations made to FOTOR are eligible for a 33% rebate from an individuals
    income tax commitment. It also gives FOTOR a greater credible status when applying for funding from
    various sources.

    School, Business, Fotor, Partnerships

    Fonterra and Waitohu Primary School. Later this year is the 50th jubilee of the school, where many FOTOR members, including our Chair, were educated in the early days. Fonterra has generously sponsored $4,900 for purchasing and ongoing care for the trees being planted June 5. This project has encompassed the ideals of Fonterra for the restoration and water care of the river, as well as a conservation educational programme for the pupils of Waitohu School.

    Otaki Rotary. A similar successful programme was conducted last year where the Otaki Rotary funded Te Horo Primary School nurturing and planting out 450 trees on the southern side of the river. The trees have been in the ground for just about a year, and the students will make a class visit to the site later this year.

    Honda TreeFund. From new car sales, Honda New Zealand, through Honda Kapiti, have provided 13 trees for every new car sold. FOTOR have benefited from this programme for a number of years. Last year we received $1250 and in the current year we received $1500, which has been spent on nurturing trees for our ongoing restoration programme.

    Quin Buildings. Having our own nursery has allowed us to grow quality native plants from seedlings, which means we pay one-third the cost of trees that would be ready to plant out. Our intrepid Wednesday Group of volunteers work in the nursery every week, but it is difficult in winter. Quin supplied materials to make the potting area weather proof and more comfortable for the volunteers.

    The Philipp Family Foundation. They have agreed in principle to finance 1000 trees for the Otaki Primary School to nurture and plant out. This project is programmed for the 2014 planting season. This foundation is very supportive of our current programmes to meld the educational aspect and environmental conservation.

    Reprint of FOTOR rules
    Two changes were made to our Rules at the last AGM. It updated the list of organisations that have representatives on the Executive Committee, and also amended the "Winding Up" rule. It is intended to reprint the Rules incorporating the changes by the end of July. These will be available to all members on request. An electronic version will be available.

    We trust this newsletter has been informative. The next communication will be advice of the River Walkover (drive over actually) early September then the Annual Report. Looking forward to meeting with you at the planting days.
    Max Lutz

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