In May 2017 we went to Golden Bay, Tasman, about an hour’s drive from Nelson, for our Annual General Meeting and Conference. With local expert Rainer Frederick and his helpers we were able to not only get down to business but also enjoy one of the most beautiful places in New Zealand.  We held a public forum – a first – at the Pohara Boat Club on Friday evening, 26 May, followed by the AGM and conference 27 May.  On Sunday 28th we visited the local region, what an experience.

Committee in 2017: Wilhelm Lehmberg (Chair), Angela d'Aquaro Law (Membership Secretary), Damian Nowak (Financial Officer), Lu Tyree (subsequently accepted Association Secretary position), Ordinary committee members - Ben Saunders, Kirsten Roedsgaard-Mathieson (assistance with secretarial) John Wellington and Colin Mairs.

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Highlights from the conference mentioned were

• Public forum with a good attendance from the sparse population of Golden Bay. MC was Abbie Langford from the Tasman District Council - Golden Bay Community Board.  Andrew Lammerton, General Manager, Department of Conservation spoke about the issues facing the small community with regards to visitors – the good and bad aspects of free independent tourists and the challenges they place on the community.  Matthias Schellhorn, ProGuides member, talked about tourism development, status and predictions plus a proposal for a universal tourist levy to be introduced. The latter found resonance from the floor

The speakers:
• Annette Baxter, Assessment Manager for Worksafe (Dept of Labour Health & Safety in the Workplace) on the Implications of Health & Safety Legislation;
• Hon Damien O’Connor, Tourism Spokesperson as MP for Westland / Tasman
• Sue Walke, ProGuides Member from Hawkes Bay talking about conflict management. Catering was courtesy of the Pohara Boat Club social team, thank you for yummy morning tea and of course a real home cooked road lamb dinner at the end of a hard day’s night. Thank you!!!

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Achievement / Goals

• Ongoing communication with DOC's compliance team and Cher Knights looking at concession holders in the tourism industry.
• For three years we have run the association under the revised Constitution and the Operations Manual. Issues which arise from time to time have highlighted the need to review the Consitution. The Constitution is to be reviewed in the 2016-2017 year.

Sunday Post Conference Event:

Thanks to our competent driver - Hans Werner Lehr who was the sober driver and chauffeur for the whole weekend, a super big thank you to Hans Werner for also ferrying people from and to Nelson Airport!
In the course of the day, we visited Wainui Inlet, the historic Abel Tasman memorial, walked through The Grove with its amazing native forest, ancient trees and history.

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