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New Harbourmaster appointed

24 May 2004

New Harbourmaster appointed

The Auckland Regional Council today oficially appointed John Lee-Richards as Auckland’s new Harbourmaster and Regional On-Scene Commander

Mr Lee-Richards comes to the ARC from the Maritime Safety Authority (MSA), where he has served five years in a variety of senior roles including National On-Scene Commander for oil spill response.

He has also worked as Deputy Harbourmaster and Regional On-scene commander for Northland Regional Council and served in the Merchant Navy.

ARC Chair Gwen Bull says Mr Lee-Richards’ background makes him an ideal person to tackle a number of priorities for the ARC’s maritime operations team.

“The new ARC Harbourmaster and his team will be responsible for enhancing the region’s capability for oil spill response and coastal pollution,” Cr Bull says.

“We also want to work towards more co-ordinated maritime management together with the Police, Coastguard, MSA and the Navy.”

AS ARC Harbourmaster Mr Lee-Richards will also have key roles in the area of water safety education, risk management and responding to a new Ports and Harbour Safety Code, which MSA is in the process of developing.

Cr Bull says with Ports of Auckland Limited coming under the Auckland Regional Holdings umbrella from July 1, the Harbourmaster will have a key role in maintaining a transparent relationship between the ARC and Ports of Auckland in terms of ARC’s statutory role to manage navigation and safety.

Mr Lee-Richards’ appointment, made under the provisions of the Local Government Act and the Maritime Transport Act, was formalised at a meeting of the ARC full Council today.

Mr Lee-Richards takes up his position on June 14 replacing former NATO Commander James McPetrie who has retired after 15 years as ARC Harbourmaster.

ENDS

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