Northland Justices of the Peace Association Inc

Incorporating Northern Wairoa and Whangarei Districts

May 2015 - Newsletter

President – Murray Lints

Warmest greetings to all, nga mihi nui ki a koutou,

Early this month your Council held an unscheduled meeting whose main purpose was to draft a strategic plan to guide us through the next three years. A copy of the draft is attached and is accessible on the Northland page of the jpfed website. I invite members to e-mail me () with their comments on the plan before our next Council meeting on Wednesday 20 May.

The plan sets out our goals and objectives under seven headings: service provision, membership, education and training, communication, fellowship, finance and branches.

Of the objectives, arguably the most significant is that seeking greater diversity of our membership in order to better reflect the diversity in our community. Registrar Sue and I have already met with MP’s Kelvin Davis and Shane Reti about this and been well received. We will be meeting again with them (and, we hope, with Winston Peters) in the near future. In the meantime, if you have any suggestions about people who might "fill the bill" drop me an e-mail as above.

One other objective members might like to contact me about is that relating to fellowship. If you have any bright ideas about the sort of social activity, the timing, the venue, you would like to see, let me know.

You will have gathered by now that your Council is grasping the nettle of innovation in the belief that we either move with the times or we become redundant. Please help us with our strategic plan and our mission: "To serve the Northland community efficiently and effectively".

I look forward to seeing you at our next training session, ka kite ano,

Murray Lints, President

Registrar - Sue Farrant

We recently anchored our boat at Marsden Cross and I found myself wandering around Rangihoua which has such significance in the history of our organisation. Whilst it was a beautiful day one can only imagine how desolate and isolated it was when Thomas Kendall arrived. The area has now been turned into a memorial of that first mission settlement. With road access and the building of the open air, architecturally interesting chapel at the top of the hill, the public is able to enjoy a panoramic view of the Bay of Islands at the same time enjoying a pictorial history lesson as they make their way down to the beach.


We are very keen to have as much input as possible from members. Please take the time to read the draft and contact any member of the Executive with your ideas.


Please remember you are able to change any of your personal details by going into Go to the Member Services page and click on ‘My Account’. You can change your password here as well.

Your details are then automatically updated on the Royal Federation websitepage ‘Find a JP’ which is important both for the public and our association.

If you are not sure how to do this please call me and I will talk you through the process.


"The Changing Skyline of Justice" was the theme of this year’s Conference which the four of us who attended found stimulating and thought provoking as we came to realise that the skyline is changing throughout New Zealand, not just in Auckland. Rachael O’Grady our Northern Regional representative has written a comprehensive Conference Report which can be read on the Royal Federation website. I would like to encourage you all to read it and for those who do not have a computer I have decided to include the Remits section in this Newsletter.


Mai Chen, the Plenary Speaker on Saturday morning urged us to stop selling ourselves short by calling ourselves JPs. She believes we will become more visible if we always refer to ourselves as Justices of the Peace. Let’s all practice doing just that.

Sue Farrant


This will be held in Rotorua, on August29th/30th 2015

From the Treasurer – Phiona Wilson


All those who have not yet paid their JP subscription have either been contacted directly by the Treasurer (Phi Wilson) or had a message left for them indicating their current status.

The fiscal year is three-quarters through and if you are one of those that still need to pay, please either direct credit to our account:

12-3099-0559464-00 or post a cheque to: Northland JP Association, c/- P Wilson, 10 Kopipi Crescent, R.D. 3, Whangarei.

Thanking you in anticipation.

Phi Wilson


The response to our January computer training sessions suggested that the preferred option for meetings is a week day. Two further dates have been set for this year in June and September.
On both occasions the meeting will be held at North Tec Campus in Raumunga Valley Road. This venue has been chosen for its ease of parking, relaxed environment and facilities that will enable us to commence each meeting with a 30 minute mix and mingle afternoon tea.
We hope as many of you as possible will take the opportunity to share the fellowship of other Justices of the Peace in our Association.
The topic/topics for discussion will be sent out with reminder notices closer to the dates. If you wish to request a particular topic please reply by return mail.

Training dates:

Friday 5June: 2.00 - 3.30pm Room C 350
Friday 4 September: 2.00 - 3.30pm Room C 350

Service Centre News

The Court Service Desk is continuing to operate well with some days busy and others slow, but we are definitely providing a very valued service.

The popularity of the Library Service Desk means that we have had people lined up when we arrive at 10 am. If these clients require Residency applications to be processed this takes time and others are waiting for extended periods. So following on from the recommendation of the last Executive Meeting we have asked the duty Justice of the Peace to arrive at an unadvertised earlier time of 9 am. We are hoping that this will be all that is needed rather than getting a second JP in to help for an hour, as it definitely tapers off after 11am.

Thanks everyone for making the Rosters run so smoothly.

Note: Stephanie McMillan will be looking after the service desks for the next few months. If you are unable to contact Stephanie please call the Registrar.

Dianne Broughton, Roster Coordinator

Mental Health Witnessing

In the month of February we had only one call out, so things were very quiet. To date in the month of March we have only had two call outs, so again things are very quiet. However I do wish to thank those Justices who are on call twenty four seven and are ready to move when called. Parking at the hospital has been a problem but after a lot of coming and going it has been decided that any J.P. on a Mental Health callout anywhere at the base hospital will be able to park in the enclosed parking area at the Mental Health Unit.

Graham Withers

Membership Matters


We are delighted to welcome Wendy Howard, fromKaiwakaas a Justice of the Peace. Wendy was sworn in by Judge John MacDonald at the Whangarei District Court on

19 March 2015.

We are also pleased to welcome Mrs Marvyn Smith from Waipu Cove and Mr Adrian De Laat from West Auckland. They both bring many years of service to our Association.


Congratulations were sent to our two members who received New Year Honours. Mrs Colleen Ulrich of Dargaville became an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit. Mr Craig Brown of Whangarei became a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit

Obituary - Stuart McLaggan,known as Stu, passed away on 22 January

I wish to pay tribute to Stuart McLaggan who died in January after a brave battle with cancer. Stu was appointed a Justice of the Peace in May 1995 and spent many years as a Judicial Justice and a rostered Search Warrant Justice, as well as undertaking his Ministerial duties with care. Stuart was very conscientious and prepared well for the Court work he undertook. I enjoyed sitting with Stu, as he kept me on my toes and his attention to detail was great. Stuart was the Association Trainer for some time and his dedication to this position meant we all benefited from his knowledge and experience.

The NZ Police members from the Whangarei Station presented Stuart with a plaque and certificate, when his illness precluded him from becoming an Issuing Officer, in recognition of his Search Warrant work. Stu was very touched by this gesture and very proud to receive the delegation of Police who visited him at home.

I wish to acknowledge Janet’s support of Stuart over his time as a Justice of the Peace. Janet never complained at being woken from a sound sleep when the phone rang at all hours for a Search Warrant application to be considered, spent hours typing Stuart’s assignments when he was studying (being a builder, writing wasn’t high on Stu’s list of priorities!) and welcomed the many people who visited their home for Ministerial matters.

Stuart is missed by the Judicial Team and will always be fondly remembered.

Judicial Report

I attended a Judicial Training Session in Wellington on the 21st March. All Associations were represented and the focus of the day was the Alcohol related legislation which came into force on 1 December 2014. It is always beneficial to meet with Trainers as the opportunity to discuss local Judicial matters and concerns with others is very helpful. There are 23 Justices of the Peace enrolled in this year’s Judicial course but sadly no one from our Northland Association.

We are fortunate to have people of the calibre of Sarah Loftus as the National Trainer and Rachael O’Grady as our Northern Regional Representative. Both have a background in education and Sarah a Law Degree, so our needs are well met.

Bev Weber from the Far North Association attended our Whangarei List Day on the 9th April. Bev has completed the Judicial course and is waiting to attend the Practicum in July along with Mark Farnsworth. Bev came to gain experience of Judge Alone Trials and we were very happy to accommodate her wish. My thanks to Carla Campbell, Criminal Section Manager, who so readily agreed to the visit.

Fay Colthurst

Other news…..


The Advisory Group started off the year considering the Council’s long-term plan. We have had speakers regarding the Public Transport Plan, followed by the WDC Property Manager and Officer discussing the assets management and pensioner housing, and more recently, we welcomed Alan Adcock from the Senior Management Team and Sheryl Gavin, the WDC Strategic Planning Coordinator.

It is proposed increasing pensioner housing rents from the current rate of 22-24% of superannuation to 28-30% in order to cover necessary improvements, such as insulation and security. We were then told that if tenants meet the criteria they can always apply for an accommodation supplement. In other words, Council is just passing on charges to the government instead, which I pointed out to them, and received little comment on that!

It was interesting to hear speakers from the library’s Housebound Service. They will deliver books to people who cannot leave their homes for physical reasons, or other circumstances such as no transport, no helpers etc. It is only a small service at present but if you know of anyone who needs such a service, you can phone the central library.

The Advisory Group decided to prepare a submission to the Council’s Draft Regional Public Transport Plan. As Chairperson, I was therefore nominated to attend the Hearing and speak for a maximum of ten minutes on our submission which dealt mainly on suggested improvements to bus services – new routes taking in outlying areas such as Okara, Porowini Avenue, Hikurangi and Ruakaka. We also recommended that greater accountability be introduced for taxis and vans operating the Total Mobility Scheme – this resulted from bad reports having been received regarding no-show and overdue taxis and mobility vans causing much stress to senior citizens. John Bain, a fellow Justice of the Peace, was the chairman at the Hearing, which smoothed the path for me!

Our next meeting will involve preparing a submission on the Long Term Plan and discussion on Whangarei’s commemoration for Anzac Day, so a busy time ahead.

Stephanie McMillan, Chairman

Upcoming Events

May 20th 2015 / Executive meeting, 7:30pm Whangarei Courthouse
Information & Training Meeting / Friday 5 June 2:00–3:30pm
Room C350 North Tec Campus
August 19th 2015 / Judicial Training, 1–2pm Whangarei Courthouse
August 29th/30th 2015 / Northern Regional Conference, Rotorua
Information & Training Meeting / Friday 4th September 2:00-3:30pm
Room C350 North Tec Campus
October 17th 2015 / Northland Association
November 18th 2015 / Executive Meeting, 7:30pm, Dargaville Courthouse

Northland JP Assn – Draft Strategic Plan, Goals and Objectives, 2015-17

Service Provision

Objectives / Activities / Timeline / Leader / Resources / Expected Outcomes
Explore further options for service desks / Assess member availability
Contact library manager
Identify other possible venues / Aug 15 / Registrar / Manuals
Laptops? / Two extra desks per year
Extend courthouse roster hours / Consult court staff, assess need
Advertise new hours / June 15 / Rosterer / Greater usage of court service
Manage courts panel / Identify future JJPs
Provide training support, mentorship / Ongoing / JJP Convenor / Easier rostering of JJPs


Objectives / Activities / Timeline / Leader / Resources / Expected Outcomes
Ensure appropriate geographical spread of JPs / Create location map
Consult with MPs / Aug 15 / President / E- map, / Better coverage of district
Have membership reflect the diversity of the community / Seek more Maori appointments
Seek greater representation of component ethnicities
Consult with MPs / Ongoing / President/
Registrar / Percentages of JPs approach community percentages
Ensure competent leadership of the association / Identify skills required
Review membership for potential council members / Ongoing / President / Association improves support for members and RF
Support members opting for JP (Retired) status / Advise members of the option
Ensure acknowledgement of retirees service / Ongoing / Registrar

Education and Training