- More pressure needed
- No Roundup please
- Volunteer ranks thin
- Against spraying
- Terrible tailback
- Making an entrance
- Not engaged
- Good luck Silverdale
- Happy fisher
Peter Bishara, Arkles Bay. Published December 16
I would have thought to allow set netting at Arkles Bay in the winter months when there are few people on the beach would have been a reasonable compromise the council has set to conclude the matter. The issue of safety seems to me to be another of those concerns that is overplayed and should be addressed by keeping away from the nets when they are in the water. A little self discipline never hurt any body. The anti-set netting lobby seems to accept no compromise, and wishes Arkles Bay to be the only beach in Auckland and possibly New Zealand to ban set netting completely. We do have fisheries officers in the area most weekends and they are a phone call away if there is a breach of the fishing regulations. They beach area is for all people and activities that are popular and not intrusive. Well done Auckland Council for making the right decision.
Tom Leighton, Hatfields Beach. Published December 16, 2015
The other day I left an appointment in Titan Place and was headed north. My only choice was to go left, turn into Silverdale Village and retrace my steps up past the Silverdale Centre and out at Millwater Parkway. I still had to wait almost ten minutes before I could make that left hand turn. What a joke. I wish the Silverdale business group all the very best with sorting this out. Poor planning and design and too much unchecked growth has not been kind to Silverdale business and residents and their frustration is clear to see (HM December 2). All of us are keen to see what Auckland Transport has to offer as a solution.
John Clements, Orewa. Published December 16, 2015
I read the article (HM December 2) about the Local Board rejecting a move towards transparency and that meetings are held behind closed doors and no proper Minutes are kept. Were the article about how Mr Putin does things, it might not be laughable. But here we are talking about a Local Board made up of local people with, by its own admission, a peanut budget and very limited powers. It’s ludicrous. At election time local board aspirants raved on about how they were going to engage with stakeholders, promote democracy and seek feedback. Really? Last year I tried to ‘engage’ with the Board on two issues. At the first so-called ‘forum’ I said what I wanted to say. There was no discussion. It lasted about eight minutes. I was wished a Happy Christmas and sent on my way. The procedure was pathetic. It was almost as though the Board was scared of what might ensue if proper processes were followed. The media was there. That might explain it. For my next attempt at ‘engaging’ I was imperiously advised to turn up at 7pm and I could speak for five minutes maximum. Needless to say I, not very politely, declined. At that stage I lost faith in the Board. Democracy is not being well served. Ego massaging is. The Board needs a wake up call. Happy Christmas.
Lucy Green, Manly. Published December 16, 2015
I am not a skater, but I am so impressed with the wonderful new skate park (HM December 2) which adds so much to the entry to Orewa. With the new toilet block and the Estuary Arts wing plus the cycle and walkway the entry to Orewa is really taking shape. I only wish that the proposed Gateway to Silverdale, which I think was planned back in the Rodney District Council days had also been brought to reality. It was way more attractive than the rows of big box stores and supermarkets, petrol stations and car yards that now make it easy to drive past and continue on.
Mac Hine, Whangaparaoa (abridged). Published December 16, 2015
Arriving in New Zealand 15 years ago the peninsula seemed the ideal spot to spend our retirement and even those still of working age found that the Estate Agents’ estimate of 30 to 40 minutes from Gulf Harbour to the CBD was fairly accurate. We still find it a good place to spend our retirement, but feel sorry for those still having to work in Auckland City, as more and more houses are thrown up and the tailback of traffic has now reached the point where the daily increase is noticeable. Watching the morning Greville Road tailback, we wonder where motorist now join this slow moving or stationary group of other frustrated drivers. The Park and Ride seems to have made very little difference as new houses with one or two cars are going up faster than parking spots are provided. Drivers still kidding themselves that Penlink is the answer should face facts, no firm start date has been given, and even when it has, it would take at least five years to complete. Where do you estimate you will join the Greville Road tailback by then and how many cars will you have bought that do not like crawling along at snail pace?
Nolene Berger, Whangaparaoa
Thank you for the excellent articles and Opinion on Council’s increased use of glyphosate on our parks and roadsides. I thought readers may be interested to know that there is an online petition that people can sign if they want to let Council and Auckland Transport know they do not support the continued use of glyphosate. Look for Ban the Use of Carcinogenic Chemical on Auckland’s Roads and Parks Now, at toko.org.nz
David Dawick, Executive Officer, Lions Clubs NZ, Orewa. December 2, 2015
Your lead article in the 18 November issue on ‘Orewa Lions calling it quits on the Big Dig’ is just another sign of the growing loss of service club activities both here on the coast and right throughout New Zealand. It is not just Lions Clubs but all service- orientated clubs (including Rotary, Kiwanis and the like) that are now facing an ageing membership and are struggling for a younger membership growth. The average age of the 10,000 plus Lions clubs members in New Zealand is now approaching 70 and no longer can these stalwarts of past community activities undertake them with the same vigour and manpower. Today, these members take on lower profile and ‘softer’ projects where their limbs survive for another day. Hence long established community activities, such as the Big Dig, are almost out-of-bounds. Prospective younger members (under 60!) are still actively working, often 6–7 days a week, contributing to at least one mortgage and have greater demands on their spare time than ever before. Unfortunately governments of the day have often taken the service clubs for granted as for years they have represented an ‘unpaid arm of a non-existent Government portfolio’ and assisted the blind and the elderly, those with disabilities who require property maintenance and the like and provided community network activities demanded by the public but generally ignored by agencies. Here on the Hibiscus Coast there are two Lions Clubs and two Rotary clubs and readers interested in contributing to their Whangaparaoa, Orewa or Silverdale communities should seek them out and volunteer a small part of their spare time to give something back to the place they call home.
Robert Baxter, Stanmore Bay. December 2, 2015
I live in Stanmore Bay and part of my property backs onto a reserve. I would like to go on the No Spray Register as I find the wholesale use of Roundup little short of a criminal act. Could you find out for me whether this would mean that my boundary with the reserve would also not be sprayed with chemicals?
Mark Hannan of Auckland Transport replies: Residents can contact our call centre on 09 301 0101 and ask to go on the No Spray Register. Auckland Transport currently manages the legacy Rodney register, which Stanmore falls under. When someone goes on the legacy Rodney register their boundaries are not sprayed both on the road frontage and also the park boundary. We ask property owners to assist us by keeping the boundary tidy.
Cr Wayne Walker, Manly. December 2, 2015
Thank you to the many people who supported the year round ban on set netting at Arkles Bay. In the week leading up to the committee vote I spoke with more than 500 local residents who were supportive. It was a real boost to meet so many people that care. Against the wishes of your two Auckland Councillors – myself and John Watson, the local board and all but one of the 667 submitters over little more than a week, the majority of councilors voted 6 to 4 in favour of a seasonal ban. The new seasonal ban lasts till Easter. When it comes off, the lack of council monitoring and enforcement means the community will need to be vigilant to respond to set netting nuisance and safety issues. I believe we can yet put a year round ban in place. That will require support, pressure and evidence. Please get in touch to help.