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Minutes from ESAI Annual General Meeting 2021

Annual General Meeting 2021 Ellesmere Sustainable Agriculture Incorporated 

August 4,  7pm, Lakeside Soldiers Memorial Hall, Lakeside.

AGM OFFICERS PRESIDING – Chairperson: Mr Tim Chamberlain; Secretary: Mr Craig Croft; Treasurer: Mr David Birkett


Stuart McPherson, Jo Fearn, Carey Barnett, Johanna Blakely, Janine Alfeld, Nigel Greenwood, Kelvin Coe, May Coe, David Hewson, Lyle McMillian, Val McMillian, Simon McCormick, Kate McCormick, Paul Johnson, Diana Moroney, Tony Moroney, Hamish Millar, Tim Ridgen, Murray Stephens, Garry Lamers, Grant Everest, Stuart McLaughlan, Alastair Barnett, Robin Barnett, Stuart Inwood, Alison Inwood, Tim Schmack, Stuart Stephens, Glenn Smith, Geoff Heslop, Andrew Heslop, Murray Doak, Stuart Macaulay, Simon Osborne, Mike Pullan

Apologies: Jo Benny, Don Chamberlain, Chris Chamberlain, Lindsay Gilbert, Marg McEvedy, Derek McEvedy.

Acceptance of apologies moved: Tim Chamberlain

Seconded:  Stuart Macaulay

Accepted/Carried Unanimously




Welcome to the Ellesmere Sustainable Agriculture 2021 AGM.

Thanks for vacating your warm lounges on this winter’s evening to be here.

My intention is that by the finish of the AGM at 9pm that

  • you have a clear idea of last year’s activities,
  • what is planned for the next year!
  • questions are answered, suggestions are noted.
  • We experience a view of Mike and Gary Pullan’s life as family fishermen on Te Waihora Lake Ellesmere the waterway our streams largely discharge into.

At last July’s AGM we reported on the $1.8m funding we had been allocated from MPI for restoration, biodiversity and employment in the Jobs for Nature program following the March 2020 Covid 19 Lockdown.

The $1.8m we had for the project is now $2.4m to be spent over 3 years in two projects.

  1. The Tinaku Project being our lead activity is essentially a lowland stream restoration venture covering approximately 40 different sites on the 15 lowland spring fed streams in our catchment focusing on minimising nutrient transfer, enhancing Mahinga Kai and biodiversity values.
  1. The Extension project aims to:
  • map unwanted nutrient concentrations in our waterways;
  • work with associated groups where applicable;
  • ensure our farmers have the tools and support for remaining compliant;
  • Compile relevant related data; and
  • Assist the wider public in gaining a better understanding of the positive things happening on farms.

The Tinaku project has employed a team headed by David Hewson as our project manager. David has been involved with farmers over a long period in different ecological enhancement roles in Canterbury, North Otago and Marlborough. I believe we are well served having David lead for us.
Johanna Blakely is project assistant and as a landscape architect, liaises with our farmers, plant nurseries, contractors, designs the plantings and creates the plans.
Diana Moroney is employed in a secretarial and administration position.
Jo Fearn has accepted a role for 2.5 days a week heading the extension project and helping Carey where appropriate.
In June we had 40 people in new and part time roles working on Tinaku.
David and Johanna will, in general business, speak to last year’s work and plans for the upcoming year.

In the tabled Resource Management Report, Carey has detailed the work done over the last year in discussion and submission with the various regularity bodies that affect our farming activities. Carey will outline the work ahead as she sees it in general business.

In the last months ESAI members and family attended cultural and treaty workshops at Te  Taumutu Runanga Ngati Moki marae. For me this was the first time I have been on a Marae. Simon Osbourne will speak to the treaty workshop he and others attended.

Jo Benny and Johanna Blakely have been engaging with our area schools and Johanna will give an outline of outcomes in general business.

Committee members attended an Institute of Directors training workshop along with other groups receiving MPI funding.

Outside the projects we have run a two-day irrigation scheduling course, had members attend Overseer programme training, irrigation water use efficiency and health and safety around irrigation systems.

On behalf of the ESAI members I thank the committee for the creative willing support and energy so freely given over the last year. It’s been fun and you have made it easy. Thank you.


Confirmation of 2020 AGM Minutes: see attached

Matters arising:            Nil                                                       


Acceptance of minutes as true and accurate record moved: Tim Chamberlain

Seconded:        Stuart Macaulay


Accepted/Carried Unanimously

Correspondence: Nil



Two parts

  1. ESAI accounts:
    1. Opening balance           $27042.37
    2. Expenditure                  $13394
    3. Income                         $10500

Workshop incomes paid for the courses

    1. Loss of                          $8342.09
    2. Overall balance of         $18660.20
    3. Three years ago we have a loss of          $950

Two years ago, we had a loss of             $5000

This year we have a loss of                    $8300

Resulting in our reserves dropping below our reserves policy of $20 000

Discussion was had regarding the raising of the annual sub to $150.  Those present supported a suggestion from the floor that $150 was still too cheap and that the amount should be $200.  There was general support for the $200 amount.

David Birkett moved that the annual subs be raised to $200 + GST

Seconded: Tim Schmack

Accepted/Carried Unanimously

  1. Tinaku Balance:
    1. Financial year finishes 30th June.
    2. Operating account                    $255829 .26
    3. Maintenance account                $117438.75.     This is money put aside for

maintenance of projects that have been planted.

    1. Total                                        $373268.01      This was drawn down by end of

June. All reports go back to MPI as well

Move to accept the report and 2020/21 Accounts: David Birkett

Seconded: Simon Osborne

Accepted/Carried Unanimously


  1. Mrs Carey Barnett tabled a report that was emailed prior to the meeting. It was assumed that it had been read. She identified any potential issues on the horizon.
  2. District Plan moving to hearings

ESAI is supporting Horticulture NZ, Federated Farmers, Pork Industry NZ.

  1. ESAI gives grassroots information at regional level and also local “on the ground” voice.
  2. Ministry of Environment is reviewing Overseer. Therefore, there is a hold on FEP audits

Move to accept the report: Carey Barnett

Seconded: Stuart McPherson

Accepted/Carried Unanimously 



Nigel Greenwood conducted the election of chairman for the Society:


Nominated:  Tim Chamberlain

Nomination from: Simon Osborne

Seconded: Stuart McPherson

Tim Chamberlain was elected as Chairperson of the ESAI.

The chairperson conducted the election of the Vice Chairperson.

  • Vice Chairperson:

Nominated: Nigel Greenwood

Nomination from: David Birkett

Seconded: Simon Osborne

Nigel Greenwood was elected as Vice-Chairperson of the ESAI.

Chairperson conducted the election of officers:

  • Secretary:

Nominated: Craig Croft

Nomination from: Carey Barnett

Seconded: Nigel Greenwood

Craig Croft was elected as Secretary of the ESAI.

  • Treasurer:

Nominated: David Birkett

Nomination from: Simon Osborne

Seconded: Stuart Macaulay

David Birkett was elected as Treasurer of the ESAI.

  • Committee: Ms Jo Jermyn Benny, Mr Stuart McPherson, Mr Stuart Macaulay, Mr Simon Osborne.
  • Nominated by: David Birkett
  • Seconded: Craig Croft

Accepted/Carried Unanimously

  • Are there any other nominations?
  • Nominated: May Coe
  • Nominated by: Nigel Greenwood
  • Seconded: David Birkett

Accepted/Carried Unanimously

  • Accountant: Lay Associates
  • Nominated by: David Birkett
  • Seconded: Stuart Macaulay

Accepted/Carried Unanimously

  • Authority to second new Committee Member/s during 2021/22 term:
  • Moved by: Tim Chamberlain
  • Seconded: Simon Osborne

Accepted/Carried Unanimously                                  

  • Authority for the ESAI committee to seek environmental, legal, cultural, financial and or scientific advice as necessary in order to meet the needs of EASI. Such advice may be in the form of a professional consultant or suitably qualified person considered by the committee to be able to provide a sufficient level of service on an as required basis.
  • Moved by: Tim Chamberlain
  • Seconded: Simon Osborne

Accepted/Carried Unanimously

Local fisherman Mike Pullan addresses the ESAI members during the AGM.


  1. Guest Speaker: Mike Pullan on the health of Te Waihora Lake Ellesmere

Mike spoke about the current health of the lake as well as the numerous species that live in and around the lake.

2. Nigel Greenwood

a. The Tinaku project employs Contractors for the maintenance of the planted areas. These contractors are available to carry out similar work on members farms at the cost of the individual farmers.

b Certified handler course.

A number of members will have Grow Safe and Certified Handlers’ certificates due to expire. The society is looking to organise a course for members to get their certificate renewed.

                  In both cases above, register your interest with Nigel Greenwood.

3. Simon Osborne – Cultural workshop

The local Runanga has been running two workshops based at the local Marae – Te Taumutu. A number of members have been to both courses that the Marae runs, and all have found the courses very thought provoking, enlightening and beneficial. Members were encouraged to consider going to these courses.

4. Website launch.

a. Website for ESAI is It is used so that we can get our message, our progress and our good news stories to the members of the public.

b. Logo is also part of the website. The aim is to get the society more widely recognised as we are operating at both a local, regional, and national level.

Background to the logo: Windmill is a traditional symbol of family farming and areas traditionally known for their agricultural use.  It symbolises environmental care through re-newable energy use and the connection to water use in the area over a long period of time.  The spinning of the wheel and directional changes signifies the nature of the group that is always changing and working in different ways to deal with the many changes that the ‘wind’ blows through.  The symbol itself and the way it is set out cuts a dominant and commanding figure that makes a statement without the need for words.

5. Tinaku report – David and Johanna

    1. The Tinaku project comes from funding gained from the “Jobs for nature” and MPI
    2. It started mid-October
    3. Purpose is to create jobs while enhancing Ellesmere’s environment, waterways and biodiversity.
    4. By June Tinaku project had:

a. Created 49 jobs, with 15 FTE.

b. Employment and training with DoC’s Weed Strike Force.

c. Opportunity to establish weed control and plant maintenance contracting businesses.

d. Full-time horticulture and eco-contracting apprentice employed by Wai-Ora Group

e. PhD student employed for groundwater study.


5. If a farmer has an area they want to have assistance in restoring then the process is as follows:

a. Site visit:

b. Prioritise and select restoration sites against Tinaku criteria.

c. Develop planting plan, cross sections and detailed plant lists

d. Confirm plans with landowners.

e. Order plants and oversee contractors.


6. Second project within the Tinaku project is also funded through MPI and aims to initiate:

a. Water Quality Project focusing on

    1. Baseline water sampling of 10 sites along three streams in Ellesmere. Macroinvertebrate and fish biodiversity monitoring.
    2. Ground water sampling.

b. Establish better communication through a website of the good news stories from the rural sector

c. Run workshops and field days to upskill members and improve understanding around regulatory changes.


6. Murray Stephens spoke about “Selwyn Sustainable” which was a group started in the 1980’s which has not been active for the last ten years. It has existing funds (approx. $30 000) that is wishes to transfer to ESAI as it is a similar group with similar goals. The desire from Selwyn Sustainable is for this money to be used for a special project.


CLOSING ADDRESS: Tim Chamberlain thanked everyone for their attendance.



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