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The Latest Southland District Council News

Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ) has honoured former Southland Mayor Frana Cardno with the Skills Organisation Outstanding Contribution to Local Government award in the inaugural LGNZ EXCELLENCE Awards.

Mrs Cardno was one of New Zealand’s longest serving mayors, leading Southland District from 1992 to 2013, and is the longest serving female mayor the country has ever had.

LGNZ President Lawrence Yule says Mrs Cardno, formerly a member of LGNZ’s National Council, had an exceptionally strong commitment to her local community.

“A truly outstanding mayor, Mrs Cardno was always the champion for community boards and social issues. She was an excellent lobbyist who seemed to have open access to all ministerial officers,” Mr Yule says.

“The Southland community and wider local government sector benefitted hugely from Mrs Cardno’s work and her legacy continues to be appreciated within her community.”

Her commitment to local government and the community was recognised shortly after her retirement from more than two decades of service as mayor, when she was appointed a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to local government.

Mrs Cardno fought for equal access to libraries for everyone in Southland when she began her local government career. She was one of the leaders in the development of the Hump Ridge Track at Tuatapere which brought communities together as many volunteers pitched in and also was at the forefront of efforts to take a more collaborative approach amongst Southland councils. This led to the formation of the Shared Services Forum, where all southern councils collaborate.

After her 2013 retirement from local politics, Mrs Cardno stayed committed to local issues and was an active member of the Fiordland Conservation Trust and Save Fiordland.

Mrs Cardno was a strong champion for the involvement of women in local government. She was the first female councillor and then mayor in her district. She received a number of awards while in office, including the Jean Harris Award for the development and progress of women in society, the United Nations Certificate as an outstanding woman in local government. The Award, designed to recognise one or more individuals who have made an outstanding contribution to local government, was judged by LGNZ’s National Council.

Mrs Cardno said the award is a great honour and she is delighted.

“I have always been passionate about local government and grassroots democracy in New Zealand and I am proud to have played a role in its development, both at a local and a national level,” she said.

“It was a real honour and privilege being the mayor of Southland District and the support and friendship I received from the people of Southland have played a part in my commitment to the district.

“I am very proud to receive this award from Local Government New Zealand and I would like to thank everyone for this recognition,” Mrs Cardno said.


*This media release was provided by Local Government New Zealand

The Latest Southland District Council News

Open Spaces lightbox

Draft Significance & Engagement Policy

How Council engages with our communities and on what issues is being considered as part of a new policy being developed.

The draft Significance and Engagement Policy is open for public consultation from 20 September to 13 October. It determines the significance of issues in the district, and how to align Council’s communication with the public based on the issue’s significance.

The policy exists to:

  • inform the public about what to expect from Council regarding community engagement and the ways you can influence and participate in decision-making.
  • to help Council assess significance during decision-making. This provides direction on community views and the level of community engagement that might be desirable to enable Council to develop a clearer understanding of community views and preferences.

Determining Significance

In considering whether any issue, proposal, decision or other matter is of significance under this policy Council will look at:

-       The degree to which the issue affects the district

-       The degree to which it affects the community

-       The degree to which the issue affects the level of service of a significant activity

-       The degree to which the issue has a financial impact on Council or the rating levels of its communities

-       The degree to which the issue has cultural relevance

A matter will be considered significant when one or more of the above criteria are met.

Other matters to take into account can include the reversibility of the decision; the degree to which it promotes the vision, mission and values of Council; and the impact on rates and debt.

Download the draft policy [PDF, 518 KB]

     Make a submission




Draft Significance & Engagement Policy

Get Ready Week Web6

If Disaster Struck Now What Would You Do?


If a disaster struck right now what would you do?

Emergencies like earthquakes, tsunami, floods and storms can strike at any time, sometimes without warning. All emergencies have the potential to cause disruption, damage property and take lives. So it is vital that you prepare now to protect yourself, your family, home, business and community.

Get Ready Week is being held nationally from September 21-27 to help you to be prepared.

Something important you should include in your emergency kit is documents such as birth and marriage certificates and passports. Our libraries will scan these to USB sticks for you during Get Ready Week. Staff from Emergency Management Southland will also visit libraries during the week to offer advice.

Visit the Get Ready Get Thru website for help to get prepared (external link)

If Disaster Struck Now What Would You Do?


Southland District Road Works & Closures

19 September


The Ohai-Clifden Highway, between the Twinlaw Road and Scotts Gap Feldwick Road intersections is closed because of a slip – a detour is in place. Work is anticipated to start in the week beginning 22 September. 

Walker Road, Woodlands, between Waihopai Downs Rd and Fleming Rd, is closed until further notice due to a collapsed culvert/bridge.

Road Works

Avondale Road Rehabilitation – Works are underway on the site. Temporary traffic management is in place with speed limit restrictions in place until mid-October.

Roadside Drainage Improvements

Work is being undertaken at the following sites, with temporary traffic management and speed limits in place.

- Looney Road
- York Road, Riversdale
- Flora Road East
- Otautau Drummond Road
- Otautau Nightcaps Road
- Otautau Tuatapere Road
- Fairfax Isla Bank Road
- Hundred Line West Road
- Company Road, Nightcaps

Slip Repairs

Golden Bay Road – Construction of the slip repair is complete however uneven road surface remains. Take care when travelling through the site.

Horseshoe Bay Road – Construction of the slip repair is complete however uneven road surface remains. Please take care when travelling through the site. Temporary warning signs are in place.

Thule Road – Construction of the slip repair is complete however uneven road surface remains. Please take care when travelling through the site. Temporary warning signs are in place.

Southland District Road Works & Closures