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International Volunteer Day

Ric Carlyon - Saturday, December 05, 2015

Today is International Volunteer Day (IV Day), a United Nations-led initiative, with the theme this year ‘Transforming Governance’. 

This emphasises the power volunteers have to change the world through leadership and to help achieve the UN’s ‘Sustainable Development Goals’ which rely heavily on the engagement, commitment and hard work of volunteers.

Active and trained Justices of the Peace can claim their contribution to New Zealand’s record, boasting the highest rate of volunteering in the OECD. Kiwis spend an average of 13 minutes a day volunteering compared to the global average of 4 minutes a day. (Better Life Index, 2015)

"On this day we celebrate the power of volunteerism.  Volunteering fosters creativity, draws strength from our passions
 and connects us to those who need us most." 
-Secretary-General, UN, Ban Ki-moon

Volunteers are essential to achieve services to the community and our Association. 

Today, especially, is the day to reflect on this…. 

Remits for Next Conference

Ric Carlyon - Wednesday, December 02, 2015

Delegates will be asked to consider a number of remits at next year’s Annual Conference of the Royal Federation of Justices Associations to be held in Dunedin. They cover a wide range of Justice of the Peace activities and administration. 

Treaty of Waitangi 
The Board of the Federation has proposed that recognition of the Treaty of Waitangi is included in the Federation’s Constitution, given effect by adding ‘Royal Federation of New Zealand Justices Associations Incorporated recognises Te Tiriti O Waitangi, The Treaty of Waitangi, and endeavours to adhere to its principles’. The Board notes “… the constitution is currently silent on both bi-culturalism and multiculturalism, it is appropriate that we initially address our obligation to bi-culturalism, then work towards the recognition of multiculturalism…”.

Machinery Matters
Auckland Association has put in several Remits - one proposes that Federation policies may be amended by Notice of Motion by any member-Association, another that the Communications Grant paid out to Associations is increased, but without affecting capitation fees, and a third seeks an increase in the scope of training activities which qualify for reimbursement. 

Alternative Measure
Auckland is also advocating an “Active and Trained” policy for Justices of the Peace which, it says, provides a non-bureaucratic and measurable way of ensuring Justices are active, available and effective as they serve their communities.

JP Retired 
Bay of Plenty wants the Justice of the Peace Act changed to enable “J.P. Retired” status to be accorded those who have served fewer that 10 years, the minimum qualifying service in present legislation. 

Bay of Plenty, following resolutions at this year’s Rotorua Regional Conference, will move that half-day educational workshops be incorporated into National and Regional Conferences. “Education is increasingly important,” the remit contends, “as we move forward to accreditation, as we educate Justices for new roles, for changes in law and in the training of new Justices”.

Biennial Conferences? 
North Otago Association has a remit proposing that the Federation’s annual national conference is held every two years, with biennial regional conferences in intervening years. The remit says the annual travel, accommodation and fees have become too expensive for smaller associations: every second year would save money for both member-Associations and individuals. 

The conference is in Dunedin 24-28 February 2016.  

Council Briefs

Ric Carlyon - Wednesday, November 11, 2015

From Council’s October Meeting held today…
Looking Ahead
Council has committed to have the final draft of Association’s 5 Year Business Plan completed in the early New Year. Originally researched and drafted last financial year, the document will be up-dated and reported back to Council in February for ratification.

Meeting of Support Group Coordinators
Councillors heard that the date has been confirmed for the next meeting of Support Group Coordinators. It’s 20 February 2016, at the Auckland District Court from 10am to noon. Dawn Jones, who oversees Support Groups on behalf of Council, says there are a number of updates and matters to be discussed, among them the Active and Current policy which all Justices of the Peace are expected to follow, especially those who through Support Groups, serve at Service Desks. 

Service Certificates
Council wants to hear from long-serving Justices who are due their service certificates. “We want to ensure appropriate awards are made to our eligible members”, says President Selwyn Haworth, “particularly those who have served their communities for 30, 40 or 50 years. We realise some awards have not been presented and we want to remedy this”. Justices with long service who have not received appropriate awards should contact the Registrar. 

Dunedin Conference
Preparations are well underway for Auckland's delegation to attend the annual conference of the Royal Federation of Justices Associations in Dunedin, 26th -28th February.  Work has begun on several remits that Auckland plans to advocate and the decision’s firming about those Councillors who will be attending. Observers are welcome at the Conference - perhaps other Auckland members might like to spend some time in Dunedin worked around a holiday in Otago.

New Registrar
Peter Montgomery, the Auckland Association's new Registrar was welcomed this morning at the first Council meeting he has attended since his appointment. New Treasurer, Geoff Pownall, as earlier advised, is on a long-planned overseas trip: he will meet members of Council around the table at their next meeting in December. 

Registrar Brookes Bows Out

Ric Carlyon - Tuesday, November 03, 2015

Retiring Registrar Roger Bookes, JP, in a farewell message to members of the Auckland Association has advised that Peter Montgomery (new Registrar) and Geoff Pownall (Treasurer) have commenced duties. 

“Our Association”, Roger says, “promises to prosper and benefit greatly from the extensive and relevant experience Peter and Geoff bring to our administration”.

“As I bow out I express thanks for the support, goodwill, trust and friendship that have been extended to me in the past 11½ years. Over this time I have been privileged to work with 7 Presidents, 12 Councils, several regional reps, trainers and support group coordinators whose efforts for the benefit of fellow members and the public cannot be commended highly enough”.

“The collective work of all our members is also very impressive; 35% of all New Zealanders obtain their JP services from our Association's members”.

 “I thank you for the satisfaction I have experienced from my direct and indirect involvement with all members and I wish you the very best in the future”.

 Roger will continue community work as Justice of the Peace and will retain close contact with the Association's work - he has agreed to be the liaison point -of-contact to help and advise Support Groups in Auckland’s Central and Western Districts. 

Bill Mudgway Remembered

Ric Carlyon - Monday, November 02, 2015

Many Justices of the Peace were in the congregation to farewell Bill Mudgway during his funeral at Howick this afternoon.

William George Mudgway, QSM, JP died last week aged 93. He was a long-time Justice of the Peace, serving for a time on the Council of the Auckland Justices of the Peace Association. 

Those at his well-attended service learned of the string of many other community services Bill contributed… including to Grey Power, Local Community Board, District Health Board Committee and numerous Howick organisations, on top of which he was also a Marriage Celebrant. Bill was much better known to a wider public for his commentating of wrestling matches from the Auckland Town Hall and, more recently,  for his “Eye In The Sky” traffic reports which he gave mornings and evenings for many years, relayed from a Cessna plane and broadcast over Radio i. Bill was also the voice of the Speedway for nearly 45 years, first at Newmarket and then at Western Springs Stadium where his voice was synonymous with the sport for several generations of drivers and fans.

Review of Communications

Ric Carlyon - Saturday, October 31, 2015

The recent nation-wide communications survey among Justices of the Peace has been a great success. 40 per cent of those canvassed answered the questionnaire.

The survey sought information from 5,844 individual Justices and the 29 Regional Associations, asking how they currently receive communications and their preferences for the future.

It’s the first survey undertaken of the total membership across the country, a combination of on-line email and hard-copy, attempting to gauge “grass roots” opinion and views.   

Questions centred on information exchange with the Royal Federation of Justices Association and Regional Associations, including the magazine “Justices’ Quarterly”, websites, email and hard copy.

The Review Committee says the pleasing response to the survey justifies the effort and expense and has provided invaluable information which will result in meaningful recommendations to the Royal Federation’s Board. The survey is part of an ongoing review of communications being undertaken by the Board as it updates its Strategic Plan 2015-20.

Results of the survey will be published in the Summer edition of “Justices’ Quarterly”. 

New Registrar - and Treasurer

Ric Carlyon - Thursday, October 29, 2015

The Association has a new Registrar… and a new Treasurer.

Peter Montgomery, JP, has been appointed Registrar, while the office of Treasurer has gone to Geoff Pownall, JP.

The two are filling part-time positions following the recent resignation of Roger Brookes. Association President, Selwyn Haworth, says it has been decided to split the duties traditionally managed by the Registrar alone, as the two new roles reflect the quite different responsibilities, particularly with our Association’s new computer programmes and recent legislative changes. 

Peter Montgomery is a member of three Institutes - Chartered Accountants, Secretaries and Corporate Managers - as well as other professional groups and he is an accountancy consultant working across a wide range of commercial undertakings including not-for-profit entities. He has been a Justice of the Peace since 1995.

Geoff Pownall is also a member of the Chartered Accountants’ Institute, owns a consulting company providing compliance and administration services to individuals and charities and holds office in several professional bodies. Geoff was appointed Justice of the Peace in 1992.

“The appointment of Peter and Geoff will assist our Association,” Selwyn Haworth says, “to meet the ongoing changing needs of our Council and members for now and the future“

Obtaining the Ministerial Manual

Ric Carlyon - Monday, October 26, 2015

The updated Ministerial Manual is being distributed to all Justices of the Peace.

The distribution of the first tranche of the revised Manual occurred at the recent Auckland Conference where hundreds of copies were collected by those attending. 

“Delivery’s going smoothly” says Registrar, Roger Brookes, “and the next step is distribution through Support Groups, rather than via the Association’s office. We want to deliver “in bulk” instead of individually so Support Group Coordinators will obtain sufficient number of copies for dispersal at the next meeting of their members. Accordingly, Justices of the Peace should plan to attend their next Support Group meeting to uplift their Manuals.

Details of all Support Groups, their coordinators and date/time/place of meetings are available on the Members’ Pages on the website - Support Groups. 

More than 60 Years' Service Honoured

Ric Carlyon - Monday, October 19, 2015

A South Auckland Justice of the Peace has been recognised for his remarkable long service to the community.

George Henry Mills Green, QSM, JP, known by everyone as Jerry Green, has been presented with a Certificate of Service for 61 years’ service as a Justice of the Peace. 

Jerry is in his mid-nineties and described as “bright as a button” and, in addition to Justice of the Peace duties, he serves on the Management Committee of Age Concern for Counties Manukau. 

His certificate was presented during Age Concern’s Annual General Meeting at Cambria Park Homestead in Papatoetoe, appropriately decked out with material to celebrate International Day of the Older Person, promoting awareness of elders. For Jerry, a ninety-something year old, the messages on the wall, “Remember When”, must have been especially appropriate, particularly perhaps recalling some of the intrigue about his duties over six decades as Justice of the Peace!     

Jerry has been a stalwart of Papatoetoe: he was Town Clerk of the local Council and has a street named after him in Wiri. He is the only Justice of the Peace who is an Honorary Member of the Auckland Justices of the Peace Association.

Below: Jerry Green is presented with his Certificate by Pat Taylor, JP, coordinator of the local Justices' Support Group

Council Briefs

Ric Carlyon - Wednesday, October 14, 2015

From Council’s October Meeting held today…

President Selwyn Haworth reported that with the date for Expressions of Interest having closed, the process is well underway towards appointing a new Registrar/Treasurer or, probably preferred, a Registrar and a Treasurer.

Subscriptions Catch-up
Following long hours of manual work tidying the Association’s database, those who sought Invoices for their subscriptions-in-arrears have now been billed for the 2014/15 year. And in a few weeks the up-to-date database will be used to send out invoices to all members for the 2015/16 year at the slightly higher subscription rate. The dues for Justices of the Peace, Retired, will continue to be $18. 

Service Desks Statistics
Ian Marshall says there’ll be a big push on Service Desks to furnish monthly statistics so that the Association is aware of the work all Justices are putting in across Greater Auckland.

Active and Current
Dawn Jones, who oversees Support Groups, suggested Auckland’s “Active and Trained” competency scheme be changed to “Active and Current” to better reflect expectations of all Justices of the Peace to be up-to-date.  Council members agreed. “The word ‘current’ better reflects the structure we want”, says Dawn, “which means no one will be able to opt out because they consider themselves ‘already trained’, even though their last training session was some time ago. ‘Active’ means being regularly available to carry out duties while ‘Current’ means having up to date knowledge of all JP services” 

Midwinter Luncheon
Sherryl Wilson, as chair of Fellowship/Social Committee, suggested a Members’ event, a luncheon probably on a Sunday in July next year. Wanting to give advance warning, Sherryl says full details will be announced in good time for Members’ diaries. 

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