The Rotorua Chamber of Commerce has announced the finalists for this year's Westpac Rotorua Business Excellence Awards.
“We are particularly impressed with the wide cross section of businesses represented in this year's finalists,” comments Roger Gordon, CEO of the Chamber of Commerce. “The introduction of two new award categories has resulted in opening up the Awards to a whole new group of organisations. It's pleasing to see a number of companies building on their entries from previous years as well as a raft of new entrants obviously striving for excellence in their business performance. It really shows that the Rotorua Business Community is in great heart.”
The finalists were selected by an independent panel of twelve judges. Convenor of Judges, Christa George, said that the standard of entries was high, making the selection process particularly challenging. The judges would like to acknowledge the high level of business excellence and congratulate all those organisations who have achieved the accolade of being announced as a finalist”.
Chamber CEO Roger Gordon has confirmed that the Gala Presentation Dinner on Friday 30 September, will again be held in the Southern Trust Sportsdrome. “Last year the demand for tickets was considerable and justified our move from the Convention Centre. The evening was an incredible occasion reflecting the theme of the acknowledgment of excellence. The feeling of anticipation and then joy as winners were announced, created a great atmosphere. The tables of winners and finalists alike all joined the celebration.”
The Chamber is pleased to have arranged Gary McCormick to be the Master of Ceremonies this year. His professionalism and unique brand of humour will add that 'extra touch to the evening.
Tickets for the gala event are on sale with ticket registration available through the Chamber of Commerce web-site www.rotchamber.co.nz
Peter Guerin - CEO of the Rotorua District Council
Nico Claassen, Council's District Engineer, and I were the Rotorua officers appointed to the JOG that established three working groups: a steering, a network assessment and a funding group. A number of land transport packages were prepared which could then be assessed against the New Zealand Transport Strategy (NZTS) along with potential funding sources. These packages were developed and compared against the status quo (or 'business as usual'. Each package had a different land transport emphasis.
The JOG determined that the region's land transport performance was being undermined because of:
• Increasing congestion in Tauranga city and its strategic corridors, and also in Rotorua during the second five years of the next ten years.
• Externalities of heavy vehicle traffic.
• Limited alternatives for access and mobility e.g. Public Transport requires improvement and increased patronage in both Western BOP and Rotorua.
• The need for better route security in Eastern BOP.
• Road crashes which although low compared with other regions are very severe.
The package with a full mix of benefits was preferred by the
• Two lanes of eastern arterial
• Ngongotaha Road
• State Highway 36
• More public transport
• Walking and cycling
• Traffic demand management
• Transport plan.
The following top priorities for further investment over the next ten years to achieve a better fit with the NZTS were agreed:
• Investment in strategic roading corridors to alleviate congestion and improve access
• Investment in public transport to encourage increased mode share and improve access and mobility
• Optimise use of the existing network through investment in transport demand management, walking and cycling.
• Further investment in strategic roading
All of the priorities above make worthwhile progress against NZTS outcomes, at a total cost of up to $290m.
a) To be part of the JOG was a very interesting exercise for both Nico and me. The Bay of Plenty local authorities concluded that all parties i.e. local government and central government, need to “stretch” if the Bay of Plenty region was to achieve the transport outcomes that are needed for the
high quality of life that is expected by
all who live, work and invest in our
b) The Minister of Transport announced an increase in funding of $150 million toward the land transport investment in the
c) There is a need for Rotorua to increase local road funding if the complete package is to be achieved.
d) The additional central government funding will be directed through Land Transport New
e) Council will need to consider what additional local funding is provided as
part of the 2006/16 Ten Year Plan preparation.
In late August 2003, Chairman Judy Keaney announced the donation. My first impression was that a multi-purpose centre catering for major events such as conventions, conferences, exhibitions, concerts, banquets as well as enhancing the existing indoor sporting and recreation opportunities would have a major impact on and stimulus to Rotorua's social and economic well-being. It would also further enhance the central
A working party was formed which included Judy Keaney, Stuart Burns (Rotorua Energy Charitable Trust), Peter Guerin, and myself (Rotorua District Council) and Malcolm Short (Pukeroa Oruawhata Trust Board). Those who worked in an advisory capacity were Sheryl Kirner, Peter McLeod, Charles Roberts, and Rex Moore from the Rotorua District Council.
Howarth Asia Pacific were engaged to undertake a feasibility study into the provision of increased indoor space to meet the needs of all current and prospective stakeholders. The report received in February 2004 highlighted the need for a 3000 square metre floor space, retractable seating for at least 2500 spectators, multi- purpose space capable of accommodating 800-1000 people in a theatre style and a further 900 square metres of flexible space for breakout rooms../../function space, lounges and corporate facilities. The working party considered that this needed to be a first class facility and therefore agreed that the opening of the new centre could not coincide with the Rotorua Energy Charitable Trust's 10th Anniversary.
Many hours of development work was put in by the working party which was headed by Community Services director, Charles Roberts. Council staff member Sheryl Kirner in conjunction with Stuart Burns used their skills to ensure all technical aspects were given due consideration. Experience and the use of existing Council facilities were also put into the mix.
The preliminary design concepts were presented by Murilli Basker of Goldsmith Boon and Basker (New Plymouth) in mid- 2004 and these were submitted to all stakeholders. A resource consent was signed off in May 2005.
Early on when the first estimates were tabled, the working party recognised that a funding shortfall was evident. Council put forward $4m initially and other sources would put forward $2m, which totalled $16m for the project.
From the time the first project costs were evaluated, the price index for construction was increasing rapidly. The figure was approx 1.5% per month. The working party estimated the revised cost of the project to be in the vicinity of $25.1m.
To meet the shortfall both Judy Keaney and myself put forward an idea to employ a professional fund manager, and Steve Bramley was employed in that role. Mr Bramley needed to raise a shortfall of $8.6m as Council increased its contribution to the project to $6.5m and the Rotorua Energy Charitable Trust to $12m. To date his work has seen a huge endorsement to the facility. Mayor Kevin Winters and Peter Guerin have held many meetings with project partners which have been a huge success.
As a result of their efforts, there has been unprecedented buyin from the commercial and business community. The Rotorua Partners Programme evolved and the following are a list of the partners to date:
Rotorua Energy Charitable Trust, Rotorua District Council, Bay of Plenty Community Trust, Lion Foundation, The Radioworks/ More FM, Red Stag Timber, The Southern Trust, Unison
The Daily Post, Damar Industries, Opus International Consultants, Sigma Consultants,Star Appliance 100%
Photo Arts, Lockwood, Davys Burton,
To date the above have collectively pledged over $6m and encouraging further partners to come on board is work in progress.
The Rotorua Events Centre is on track for completion in the later part of 2006 and already Council's Events Manager is receiving requests for bookings. This project along with the trans-tasman capability of the
The project has now begun and a drive behind the Sportsdrome will indicate the size of the complex.
Cr Charles Sturt
Working Party Member
Chairman of Finance and Strategic Planning Committee, Rotorua District Council
The internet is a key marketplace for goods and services and with a global audience, increases the likelihood of making contact with your potential customers.
Although you may deal with your existing customers either in person, by telephone or fax, many potential new customers will expect to be able to research you and your business online.
So the first question that you should ask yourself is 'How will a web site help my business?'. The requirements of each type of business will differ. Let's use two examples: Consider a Rotorua B&B. With an ever increasing number of accommodation bookings being made over the Internet, a simple five page online 'brochure' would be an essential, low cost marketing tool, working 24 hours per day allowing your future guests to view your rooms and tariff and then conveniently make an enquiry online. Such simple 'brochure' sites start at around $500 + GST plus an annual domain name and web hosting fee of between $120 and $180 + GST. It will only take a few Internet bookings for such a web site to pay for itself. But we can do more with the Internet.
For our second example, let's look at
one of my own successful enterprises. www.DevonFlag.co.uk is a small online store selling niche products to a global customer base (
However complex your page, it will work as an online 'shop window' for your goods and services 24 hours per day, 365 days per year, working the unsociable hours so you don't have to. The best way to identify the best kind of web site for your business would be to consult an experienced web developer with a solid portfolio. Your foray into the world of online retail will progress from there.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
This is the first in a series of articles. Royston Bartholomew is the Principal of ThisIsMe Web Solutions (www.thisisme.co.nz) with six years experience of developing high-end database driven web applications for private, government and academic clients. As well as overseeing his Rotorua based company, Royston also dedicates a portion of his working week to delivering Diploma and Degree level web design courses at Waiariki Institute of Technology.
Thinking of a new business, have a new idea and wonder what to with it? Let's make it happen!!
The Rotorua Tourism Incubator (RTI) is a new venture and ties in with Rotorua being a fantastic visitor destination, with already established successful tourism operators. There is also excellent business community support through Vision Rotorua, Rotorua District Council Economic Development Unit, Chamber of Commerce, Business Swap, Rotorua Energy Charitable Trust, Tourism Rotorua and the business unit of
The aim is to take those with new and innovative tourism related business ideas and assist them through the critical stages, mentored by Waiariki lecturers and the business community.
“This is an excellent example of co- operation and collaboration between business and education to support economic growth in the region”, says Cecile Hoods the newly appointed Incubator Manager.
Interested or want more information? Contact Cecile on 346 8671 or email Cecile.email@example.com
Destination Rotorua logo
Rotorua is vying to become the destination of choice for British immigrants and expats looking for new careers and lifestyles.
The city is to take part in the highly regarded 'Opportunities NZ Expo' in the
Destination Rotorua Economic Development, through its involvement with the Employment Skills Project, is working to help alleviate the local skilled labour shortage by coordinating participation of Rotorua businesses at the expo.
Mark Rawson, general manager of Destination Rotorua Economic Development, said the 'Opportunities NZ Expo' is the only event in the UK dedicated to attracting highly skilled people wanting to work and live in NZ - whether returning home or migrating. He says the expo has been running for five years and attracts more than 60 exhibitors and 8000 visitors over a two day period.
“Being part of this promotion is a real opportunity for any business wanting to recruit skilled staff from the
Employment Skills co-ordinator, Jo Gargiulo, says there is a very real and immediate demand for middle management and other highly skilled people.
“Rotorua employers are struggling to fill these positions due to a lack of skills nationally. In these times of record low unemployment in
“Even though we can train and 'up skill' our young people and our new and existing staff, we have a pressing need right now to assist in growing the workforce capability for our core small to medium companies. We are getting involved in the Opportunities New Zealand Expo to provide the region's employers with another practical avenue for their staff recruitment campaigns, ” says Ms Gargiulo.
Further information about the 'Opportunities NZ Expo' is available from the Employment Skills section of the website
or from Destination Rotorua Economic Development's employment skills
co-ordinator, Jo Gargiulo, on 348-4199 extn 8543.
Pic to go with each person
Christa George is Director of Support Services at Waiariki Institute of Technology. She moved to Rotorua in 1980 and has worked for the last fifteen years in business lecturing and management roles. Her experiences are in small business ownership and in the health and education sectors in
Jeremy Mihaka-Dyer CEO of Taupo Primary Health Organisation. Until recently he was the Population Health Manager for Rotorua General Practice Group, winner of the 2003 Rotorua Service Provider Business Award. He is an experienced health sector manager and was instrumental in establishing Health Rotorua Primary Health Organisation. Jeremy currently sits on the Rotorua Chamber of Commerce Executive and the Business Awards Organising Committee. He is the founder and current Chair of Boost the young managers' network for Rotorua. At a national level he represents general practice and primary health organisations through the Independent Practitioners Association Council. Jeremy is married to Tina and father of two wonderful children: Karrick (5) and Bethany (4).
Don Gunn was appointed as General Manager of Tourism Rotorua in October 2003. He has been involved in the tourism industry for 23 years and has worked for major inbound tour operators, Guthreys Tours and Newmans Tours, and as Executive Director of General Travel NZ. While developing business from the key Asian markets,
Terri Foley is the Managing Director of Jabiru Business
& Marketing Consultants in Taupo, a company that offers specialist business and marketing advice to new and existing businesses to
develop their direction or to investigate new projects.
Terri has worked with a number of businesses in the
Gerard Kennedy (BHSc, NZDMDI) and his wife Tina are owners of Brumby's Bakery, the current
title holders of Rotorua's “Retailer of the Year” and the premier title “Business of the Year”. Gerard opened Brumby's Bakery in June 2002 and is a proud dad to
Frank Graham has experience as a manager and owner of small to medium sized business enterprises for over 40 years. After 20 years farming, Frank spent 10 years in export related activities before moving into man-agement consultancy and merchant banking, particularly working with startup enterprises. Frank moved to Rotorua nine years ago and has acted as a business advisor and finance broker. A strong advocate of stimulating regional growth through good business, Frank sees the Rotorua Business Awards as advancing that cause. Frank was a judge in the 2002 and 2003 Rotorua Business Awards. He served as a member of the Executive of the Rotorua Chamber of Commerce and of the Business Awards Organising Committee in 2003.
Jill Wilkinson Fuller
Jill Wilkinson Fuller
Life is not about the number of breaths that you take but the moments in life that takes your breath away and for Jill winning Retail and Business of the Year in 2001 certainly was one of those moments. In the last 15 years, Jill has been extremely fortunate to fulfill her passion for travel by choosing a career in the travel industry. Jill has had a variety of roles in the travel industry but for the last seven years, she has been in partnership with House of Travel, Rotorua. She continues to enjoy all facets of owning her own business and working with extremely talented people who share the same goals and vision for the company. There is a saying that describes what travel and the business means to Jill - choose a job you love and you will not have to work a single day of your life.
Tina Toschi is the Executive Director of Toschi International, a company specialising in Management Development and Professional Development Assessment Centres throughout
Lloyd Upston is Senior Business Manager for the Westpac Bank covering Rotorua, Whakatane and Taupo. He has 26 years experience in the banking industry, for the past 13 years based in Rotorua. His role at the Bank involves leading and coaching a team of business staff and working closely with business customers in this region. Throughout his time in the Bank he has gained an invaluable knowledge of the local business environment and developed specialised business banking expertise. Lloyd gains the greatest satisfaction working alongside, providing support and adding value to business customers, through high service standards and offering practical financial solutions. It is always great to experience in their success.
Cecile Hoods has been working at Waiariki Institute of Technology for just over four years tutoring Business Finance, Economics, Quantitative Business Methods and Management Information Systems. As a supplement to her business skills, she has developed capabilities in the area of funding applications for Tertiary Education Commission as well as research. Cecile's previous experience includes over 17 years in the health and finance industries. She co - published research on “Knowledge Management SRM and CRM in disguise?” at the Applied Management Conference in 2003. Flexible learning and utilizing Moodle (Modular Object Orientated Dynamic Learning Environment) were co - presented at an International Conference in Rotorua in February, 2005. Cecile is currently enrolled in a PhD (Technology in Education) through
Debra Bell has lived in Rotorua for 40 years. She has developed extensive networks in the business and voluntary com-munities. Her background is in the financial industry as a bank manager and financial adviser. Chris and Debra own Rotorua Precision Dental Laboratory Limited which won the Rotorua Chamber of Commerce 'Best Customer Service Related Business of the Year' Award in 2000. Debra is a business coach and workshop facilitator for the Enterprise Training Programme, an initiative of Trade and Enterprise New
Mike is a Director of Highbury Investments Limited which has business interests in the
Despite this, the core drivers of business, large or small, remain the same. Growing revenues, decreasing operating costs and hiring and keeping skilled employees are as important today as they were 30 years ago, or as they will be in another 30.
What is changing though is the pace of business and the nature of servicing customers. Driven by technology, customers are increasingly demanding. They are not restricted to shopping within their own town, city or even country borders. They shop, compare and buy online. They are mobile. They are 24/7 and they want you to communicate with them in the way they choose.
If you don't, someone else will.
Most businesses are aware of this yet few are prepared. Fortunately, as technology has empowered customers, it has also created opportunities for businesses to grow and operate more efficiently with the change.
IP (short for Internet-Protocol) Telephony is one such technology. IP Telephony combines computer hardware and software to enable people and businesses to do things like call a customer or partner with the click of a mouse, turn a voice call into a video call or bring up customer details and purchasing history as you phone them.
It also may enable you to see when a person is available and what their preferred method for contact is. You could also organise your voice calls alongside and with the related e-mails.
The potential for businesses and customer service is very exciting indeed!
Manage Change with One Office
Telecom's One Office can help a business unlock that potential. One Office provides businesses with a managed IP infrastructure to handle all a business' communications, from Internet access and IP Telephony to more advanced services including video conferencing, online booking systems and interactive technologies. The capabilities of an IP-based communications infrastructure could open up entirely new possibilities for your business.
IP is also intelligent, with options to allow a company to prioritise traffic on the network to maximise the performance and speed of important applications. For instance, it won't slow down a video conference call simply to handle a large e-mail. With three service options and a multitude of capabilities, One Office provides the flexibility to meet current and future needs for business. They're all managed by Telecom, which may further free up your in-house IT resources and leave you to focus on your core business.
PSIS banks on One Office
PSIS started out in 1928 as a cooperative business providing New Zealanders working in the public service with low-cost financial services. PSIS now offers its services to all New Zealanders and, as a cooperative company, all decisions are based on what is best for customers.
With competition strong in the finance industry, especially from new banks also targeting customers dissatisfied with the main banks, PSIS needed to make people aware of how much more it can offer in an increasingly crowded marketplace. Another challenge was being able to interact with customers in the ways customers want, and providing services to fit their busy lives.
PSIS saw Telecom's One Office IP technology as an answer to these challenges.
“We chose Telecom and their One Office solution because they had a sound understanding of our business and the supporting One Office technologies were entirely appropriate for the type of interaction we need to have with our customers,” PSIS Technical Services Manager Allan Dorne said.
One Office's scalability supports PSIS' recent growth in transaction volumes and will also support additional applications PSIS will be deploying in the future. PSIS is also planning to implement a distributed contact centre in the near future using One Office Voice over IP and the Quality of Service feature.
“PSIS needed the ability for staff to be able work from anywhere at anytime, whether it be via dial-up, Xtra Broadband or Telecom's T3G Mobile Broadband,” he says.
The flexibility One Office offers is also vital for decision-making according to Allan Dorne.
“One Office will give us the capability to provide our customers with more choices on how they wish to interact with us for their financial needs. This could be through a distributed contact centre using skills-based routing of calls, branch-to-branch video conferencing for customers to talk with product specialists at another branch or by extending our current IVR, Internet and SMS txt channels that PSIS already have in place.”
PSIS' network had limited support whereas One Office provides specialist support 24x7 from a dedicated managed service desk. One Office also provides PSIS with a large number of options around the size and mix of bandwidth so scalability is no longer a problem. “Provision of additional bandwidth is now like a utility supply,” Allan Dorne says. “It's quite simple to turn the tap on further or reduce the flow as your requirements change.”
On the issue of reliability Allan Dorne notes: “Telecom has put a large amount of work into the core network underpinning the One Office offering. This is evidenced by the service level targets and associated service credits if targets are not met. In other words Telecom is prepared to put their money where their mouth is.”
Telecom is a preferred supplier of telecommunications services to PSIS and has a long established track record which includes the provision of their past two networks.
“Because of our working relationship with Telecom we knew well in advance about One Office and that the features would suit our current and future requirements. We also wanted to work with a company that is prepared to work alongside other companies we have an established relationship with. A good example of this is that Telecom is working closely with IBM to assist us in transitioning to the new IP network.”
One Office for your business
With a Telecom expert, you can design and deploy a simple and complete solution to best fit your business. With the right One Office solution, a business can manage its core drivers while also staying flexible to manage change and prosper.
For more information, please go to http://www.telecom.co.nz/content/0,3900,204590-201144,00.html.
A: Getting ripped off and looking stupid to their mates and peers.
In this context I am often asked, “How can I tell if the person I am dealing with has honesty and integrity? Of course, this is a difficult call even when the other person is a New Zealander and you hold many values in common. One doesn't need to travel to another country to get one’s fingers burnt in a business deal.
“Man's mind”, says Confucius, “is more treacherous than mountains and rivers, and more difficult to know than the sky. For with the sky you know what to expect in respect of the coming of the seasons and the alternation of day and night. But man hides his character behind an inscrutable appearance.”
One measure of the likelihood of this happening may be found in the Transparency International Index. Ranked second out of 145 countries with a score of 9.6 out of 10 (2004 figures),
However, Chinese who engage in what Kiwis would consider corrupt practices do not think of their behaviour as dishonest or unethical. They have a different value system and a different understanding of “virtue” that trumps fairness every time. They also have criteria for evaluating relationships that is more than 2000 years old, and is as valid today as it was when it was posited by Confucius.
“Therefore, a gentleman sends a man to a distant mission in order to test his loyalty. He employs him nearby in order to observe his manners. He gives him a lot to do in order to judge his ability. He suddenly puts a question to him in order to test his knowledge, and makes a commitment with him under difficult circumstances to test his ability to live up to his word. He trusts him with money in order to test his heart, and announces to him the coming of a crisis to test his integrity. He makes him drunk in order to see the inside of his character, and puts him in female company to see his attitude toward women. Submitted to these nine tests, a fool always reveals himself.” (Analects 8:14)
Although today's Chinese businessman may have different criteria from Confucius, they nonetheless utilise tests of character, particularly when developing cross-cultural relationships. The Chinese are keen observers, and details of behaviour are noticed. A Chinese venture capitalist once told me, "When I meet someone who appears to have potential, I throw out some useful information, like a piece of candy. If I don't get anything back, I throw out some more. If they don't see the value, it is no use; if they see it and don't reciprocate, I don't deal with that person any further. I want to work with people who have both vision and cultural sensitivity, who understand the value of what I have to offer and are willing to give as well as take."
Relationship first, business later is the rule in
Matters that need to be addressed before suppliers allow customers to incur debt are:
• the identity of the debtor;
• obtaining security/guarantees;
• establishing a contact for the debtor;
• binding the customer to the supplier's terms of trade;
• the amount of the debt.
Overlooking or ignoring these matters not only complicates the recovery of debts, but may also make otherwise potentially recoverable debts irrecoverable.
Identifying the Debtor
The supplier receives an order for $5,000 worth of goods from Jim. When asked, Jim informs the supplier that he works for “The Good Guys” and tells the supplier to send the bill to them at
A customer is usually either an actual person or a limited liability company and in the above example “The Good Guys” is merely a trading name. If “The Good Guys” was a limited liability company ie: “The Good Guys Limited”, then it would be a legally recognised entity that could more effectively be sued and any resulting judgement made more readily enforced. Likewise, Trusts (unless they are incorporated, and most are not) are not separate legal entities. They cannot incur debts or enter into legal obligations. Suppliers should therefore not enter into contracts where the other party is simply “XYZ Trust”. When someone contracts with a trust the contract is with the trustees personally. Any contract documents should therefore have, as customer, the names of the trustees.
One means that can be used by a supplier for protection is to take a personal guarantee. The supplier should have the guarantee in place before supplying goods on credit to the customer. Obtaining a guarantee in its simplest form means having someone sign a clause stating that in consideration of the supplier continuing to supply the customer they personally guarantee all of the customer's obligations to the supplier, both present and future, and indemnify the supplier against all losses of any kind. It is useful and practical to include the guarantee in the terms of trade which can then be signed by both the customer and the guarantor.
Establishing a Contact for the Debtor
When a customer gives an address, it is important that the supplier obtains not only a postal address, but also a physical address. A supplier should know where his customer/future debtor is located and where its business is being operated from. A physical address is particularly important if legal action has to be taken and documents have to be served on the customer.
Terms of Trade
This is something that is often overlooked. Given a widespread opinion that customers who fail to pay their accounts on time should pay interest, it is surprising how many suppliers fail to draw this important requirement to the attention of their customers. The same thing happens with costs. Suppliers tend to believe that if they are put to the expense of instructing a lawyer to recover a debt from a customer, then that customer should have to reimburse them for those expenses.
A customer does not have to pay interest on overdue accounts or the supplier's costs of debt recovery unless the customer has either expressly or impliedly agreed to pay them. A customer expressly agrees when they sign a document, such as terms of trade, containing such provisions. Some suppliers choose to insert a clause at the bottom of their invoices stating that interest will be charged on overdue accounts (“an Interest Clause”). Where the supplier can establish a history of sending accounts with such an interest clause to a customer that will usually support a claim for interest at the rate stated. That is on the basis that the customer, knowing that the supplier expected to charge it interest if the accounts were not paid on time, impliedly agreed to pay interest by continuing to order goods. This would not apply if it was the first time that an account had been sent to a customer with the interest clause. It is important that suppliers ensure that customers sign their terms of trade before goods are supplied and debt incurred.
The Personal Property Securities Act 1999
This Act gives suppliers the means to take security in support of their debt. The terms of trade must create what is known as a Purchase Money Security Interest, or a PMSI. This can be publicly registered under the registry created by the Act, which will give protection on a liquidation, and in other circumstances. This is a technical process, and legal advice at setting up stage is essential.
Managing the Amount of the Debt
Debt collection usually involves instructing a lawyer and going to court. It may be an expensive and prolonged exercise that requires spending money to recover money. Many people think that once they get a judgement against a person they will get their money. That is often not the case. A judgement is merely legal recognition that one person is entitled to a specified amount of money from another person. Actually recovering the money often involves returning to court or filing more documents to enforce the judgement against the debtor or its assets. The simple rule here is for suppliers to monitor customer debts and to try not to let customers incur more debt than the supplier believes they can service.
The New Zealand Chambers of Commerce and Industry have no political allegiance. One of our strengths over our 150 year history is New Zealand is that we bring a practical and pragmatic view to political issues, particularly those of direct interest to our 22,000 members in 31 Chambers of Commerce operating throughout New Zealand.
The New Zealand Chamber of Commerce has prepared a booklet to assist all candidates and parties address these issues. The following is a summary of the key points in that booklet.
• Future economic growth is going to depend on a major improvement in productivity growth. Issues such as transport infrastructure, telecom-munications infrastructure, education, the take up by business of technology, and research and development expenditure are all critical to the country's productivity performance.
• The Chambers of Commerce and Industry will be looking to Government to lift immigration quotas for skilled and business migrants and the means by which increased levels of skilled migration can be facilitated.
IMPROVING EXPORT PERFORMANCE:
• The Chambers of Commerce would like to see Government review all programmes currently in place to ensure that they are appropriately targeted and that they are designed to attract the widest possible expansion in export interest.
SIZE OF GOVERNMENT:
• To achieve this, the Chambers have been arguing that Government should restrict its annual growth to 1% a year lower than the growth in the wider economy. The lack of scrutiny given to the growth in local government, and the quality of local government expenditure, is another issue that should be on the agenda of central government in the years ahead.
• Tax cuts particularly well targeted tax cuts aimed at improving productivity would not necessarily increase interest rates
INVESTMENT IN INFRASTRUCTURE:
• A substantial increase in roading expenditure over the next ten years above that already programmed is going to be essential if we are going to turn this situation around. The expenditure also needs to be prioritised so that the particular problems being faced by
ENSURING CERTAINTY OF SUPPLY FOR ELECTRICITY
• Failure of any important projects because of the Resource Management Act process will lead to renewed focus on the effectiveness of the RMA.
• Again, the New Zealand Chambers of Commerce and Industry are looking to Government at Central and Local level to ensure that the RMA is used as intended, and that unnecessary obstacles are not put in the way of key decisions. It is essential that the principle of national interest is recognised in these processes and given due consideration.
• The Chambers welcome the creation of an industry regulator the Electricity Commission, and wish to see the Commission continue in this role following the General Election.
• We oppose the carbon tax because we don't believe it is the right instrument. If it is introduced the extra revenue raised by the carbon tax from electricity must be reinvested in measures which increase the efficiency and security of supply and which focus on making electricity usage by industry and the general consumer more efficient.
• The Chambers of Commerce and Industry want to know how this problem has developed, and we need to make sure that Government gets better advice in the future. Poor public policy and poor analysis are dangerous ingredients in any democracy. We also need to assure ourselves that the Kyoto Protocol is the best vehicle to achieve the worthy policy aim of reducing greenhouse gas emissions. If we conclude that the Protocol is not the best way forward then we should exercise our right to withdraw.
RESTORING FAITH IN OUR EDUCATION SYSTEM
• Believe the buck must stop with the Ministry of Education and the New Zealand Qualification Authority. Recent administrative and corrective processes at NZQA are a step in the right direction, but we don't see any accountability yet from the Ministry of Education.
• Government must play a leadership role in assisting the education sector to ensure the delivery of high standard education by all
A copy of this booklet has been sent to the local candidates for Rotorua. It is also available for review at the Chamber offices.
Depreciation changes announced in the Budget 2005 were aimed at improving the efficiency of business investment and reducing compliance costs. The thought behind the changes was that depreciation claims on a fixed asset should mirror the diminution in the asset’s value. Current depreciation rates were not achieving this outcome and had the potential to distort investment decisions.
The changes proposed
Essentially a shift in rates to write off assets in the manner more closely aligned with the reduction in their economic value i.e. most business will be able to claim larger depreciation deductions earlier in the asset’s life. However the changes fall short as an encouragement to invest because the full claim for depreciation does not crystallise until the asset is sold.
The changes are:
i. A reduction in the rates applying to 'buildings' (to 2% using the straight line method)
ii. An increase in the rates applicable to other depreciable assets.
The following table shows a summary of some current and proposed rates for assets other than buildings.
Estimated Useful Life Current Depreciation Rate Proposed Depreciation Rate
(Years) % (DV) % (DDB)
1 100 100
2 63.5 100
5 33 40
10 18 20
20 19.5 10
50 4 4
100 2 2
DV = Diminishing Value Method
DDB = Double-declining Balance Method
iii. The low value asset threshold is going to increase from $200 to $500.
Will the changes be of benefit?
In a nutshell yes they are positive but, and I suppose there will always be 'buts' in legislation changes.
a) There were two changes in the original issues paper, but they failed to materialise in the bill.
i. To apply a graduated loading to depreciation rates to not only get tax depreciation rates as correct as possible but also counter the effects of inflation (inflation incentivises investment in assets with longer lives).
ii. The elimination of the distinction between new and second hand assets (the former being eligible for a 20% loading on the standard depreciation rate).
b) When the low threshold concession was introduced it was supposed to help cut compliance cost. Low value assets by their nature have a short useful life and under the proposal on estimated useful life of two years or less is written off in full. The 'cost' of increasing the threshold is supposedly the interest forgone on the Tax Revenue lost in one year, but it would seem to make more sense to set the threshold at a level which would reduce compliance cost to business and increase the interest on the Tax Revenue gained.
When do the new rates apply?
The new rates for plant and equipment will apply from the 2005-2006 income year for assets acquired after
The verdict on what's in it for your business
• Compliance costs will not noticeably reduce.
• The changes do not represent an incentive to encourage investment.
• The anomaly that the 20% loading applies only to new assets remains.
• Yes, there is an increase in depreciation rates for most assets which is welcome, but the proposals do not really provide encouragement to invest in capital as a catalyst for generating economic growth.
This article was submitted for the interest of members by Stuart King of Nairn Fisher Limited, Chartered Accountants. It should be used as a guide only and it is recommended that you consult with your tax advisor or Nairn Fisher Limited before acting on any of the information contained in the article.
These health and safety reps meet monthly on both Rotorua and Taupo sites with Joyce Wilkinson, the Health and Safety Consultant for Lakes DHB. These staff members receive comprehensive training in health and safety issues, and play an important link between the Health and Safety team and all the different areas of the organisation.
Joyce is very experienced in the health and safety sector, having worked in health and safety since the early 1980s, and in the health sector in the health and safety area since 1990. She is passionate about health and safety, and with advisor Yvonne Winefield and Manual Training Advisor Jane Pierce, heads a formidable team of health and safety conscious staff.
Lakes DHB joined the ACC Partnership Programme in 2004, and early that year gained secondary status under the Partnership Programme. This March the organisation took part in the survey and this time achieved tertiary level accreditation. The DHB works closely with ACC and with Occupational Health and Safety (OSH), and has found strong sponsorship and support from the two organisations, along with a shared commitment to improving outcomes for health and safety.
Safety NZ Week was marked earlier this month (7-13 August) and as part of this week, all Lakes DHB staff received information about safety at home and road safety messages with their payslips. Joyce Wilkinson says attaching useful information to the payslips is a means of getting information out to some staff, whose partners or families are involved in ventures where there could be improvements made in health and safety.
Later this year, Lakes DHB will hold its second Health and Safety Week (17-21 October 2005), with an organisational-wide focus on health and safety at work, at home, and all points in between. Staff will be offered a series of workshops or displays about different issues, and the idea is that they will have something useful to consider and take away from the sessions.
A good health and safety system, according to Joyce Wilkinson, is one that minimises the risks and demonstrates a commitment to caring for the staff. Of course it also includes all the legislative requirements around health and safety which are also covered as part of the ACC Partnership Programme's critical elements:
• Employer commitment to health and safety, as assessed through organi-sational policies and systems
• Planning and delivery of health and safety education for key staff, including the 52 health and safety representatives across Lakes DHB
• Hazard identification assessment and management
• Information and training
• Recording and investigating reported incidents
• Employer-employee participation
• Emergency planning
• Protection of employees from on-site work done by contractors
Joyce says a good health and safety system, when it is working well, also helps develop healthy systems and relationships in a much broader sense, which can flow into general benefits for the community.
CEO Cathy Cooney says Lakes DHB intends to continue to grow its commitment to providing “healthy work environments” which help facilitate health and safety in action.
“The achievement of tertiary status in the ACC Partnership Programme shows how many excellent systems are already in place and all staff are to be congratulated on this achievement.”
The old Sportsmans Hotel is being refurbished with the building stripped to its bare structure and receiving a complete internal and external remodel. The old hotel will be turned into a modern two level office building with a café/bar on the southern end of the ground floor. The hotel's thermal pool and BBQ area will be retained and upgraded for the use of tenants. The building will have a shared reception area with full time reception staff servicing the offices. There will be a separate conference/board room for up to 16 people and an interview or meeting room big enough for four people. The building will have a central atrium which will provide natural light to its interior. There will be a central social core and waiting area where display space will be made available to businesses located in the building. The café/bar is expected to provide light catering services for the building's tenants and visitors.
The building's new owners, Principal Holdings Ltd, in partnership with the Chamber and EDU have developed the concept of a one stop regional development shop to be located on the ground floor which represents an exciting opportunity for potential tenants. One component of the development is to supply office capacity for out of town businesses and organisations who wish to have a base while in the city.
The top floor of the building has been leased to APR Consultants and Power Solutions Ltd.
Office Space Available
There are four offices available in the ground floor, which will have:
• Access to and use of the conference and meeting rooms.
• Reception and user-pays photocopying services.
• Phone and Internet access.
• Access to all other building services, (i.e. ground floor kitchenette and toilets/showers).
• Signage at the main entrance to the building.
Each of these four units has an area of approximately 25 square metres.
There is an exciting opportunity to establish a high quality cafe/bar on the ground floor. It is essential that any such establishment will be compatible with the professional offices that occupy the building and neighbouring businesses.
Some of the café/bar's clients are likely to be staff located in the building - Rotorua District Council staff and staff from other offices on
Principal Holdings looks forward to a long and beneficial association with the tenants in the building.
For further information please contact Deryck Shaw, on behalf of
Principal Holdings Ltd on 348 5528 (w),
0274 771 072 (m).