Mischievous Mr Penk
In his recent column where he supports the actions of the rural and farming community to oppose the Government’s actions to deal with climate change (MM August 2), local National Party MP Chris Penk berates what he labels as “self-styled greenies” for daring to suggest that the farming community should actually do something to help itself.
He contends that, in fact, they should do more of the same. Dismissing science-based evidence of the effects of climate change (and the evidence all of us can see with our own eyes) as just the rantings of some “greenies” is mischievous. Actually, the group that Mr Penk defends are the ones most at risk from the ill-effects of climate change.
Already the farming community is hard hit economically by excessive droughts, by extreme weather events that inundate their farms with floods, and with climate change adversely affecting their ability to deliver their agricultural products. To fix climate change all of us have to stop saying it is just someone else’s problem.
All of society has to bite the bullet and accept there is a cost.
Neil Anderson, Algies Bay
I have lived in Warkworth for over 30 years, and since Mahurangi Matters has become the main local rag I have enjoyed reading this paper and have developed a high loyalty and respect for what it brings to the district.
However, with your August 2 issue I was very dismayed and deeply disappointed to see that Mahurangi Matters has stooped to a quality of editorial news that is a family matter – that has been so blatantly advertised as front page what I call gossip. This is a classic example of washing dirty linen in public.
To put the headline: Brothers’ dispute threatens boatyard highly illustrates my belief. This is a personal family matter that needs to be resolved within the family and not broadcast to the world. We as the public don’t know the full story of this issue and if it was to become a Mahurangi Matters item, it could have been done in a far more diplomatic and honest way that did not make it a family issue.
If Mahurangi Matters continues down this line of editorials, it is fast joining the ranks of papers like the English tabloid who feed on nothing but family gossip, and I believe you will lose the support and respect of the local residents. Let us together raise the bar for Mahurangi Matters back to where is has been in the past.
Grant Reddell, Warkworth
Editor’s response: While we respect opposing views on the newsworthiness of our stories, we stand by the fact that the possible loss of an important marine business and significant employer in Warkworth is a story worth covering. The brothers’ dispute was reported purely to provide the context for this possible loss.
I agree with the Rodney Local Board that more reserves should allow freedom camping (MM Aug 27). Carparks that are serviced by public toilets, showers and covered seating areas provide all the amenities that non-self-contained vehicles lack. Sunburst Avenue Reserve, in Snells Beach, ticks all the boxes.
Grant McLachlan, Snells Beach
So they spent likely hundreds of thousands widening and resealing parts of Sandspit Road to little benefit to motorists.
Meanwhile, further along, entering the notorious Hill Street intersection, a fraction of the cost could have created an inner lane for traffic to progress into Warkworth. Warkworth Rotary has on a number of occasions deposited trailer loads of metal to obvious benefit to users, yet the authorities are blind to the obvious sense of minimal expenditure to make a substantial contribution to easing the congestion.
And where is our Local Board? Some common sense please. I attach photo of the evidence of desperate use by motorists.
Joe Koppens, Snells Beach
Rodney Local Board deputy chair Beth Houlbrooke responds: Local roads are the responsibility of Auckland Transport (AT) and the local board has no decision making powers over them. When I saw that Rotary had placed some metal at the intersection of Sandspit Road and Matakana Road, I thought, “good job”. We had previously requested AT “shave off” this piece of road but were advised this wasn’t possible. The widening of Sandspit Road at the point pictured in Joe’s photograph was declined by AT due to concerns about safe access for residents of Millstream Place, the speed differential for vehicles on the new left-turn lane, creating an unsafe environment for lane changing, relocation costs for utilities (power pole and underground) and land acquisition, and they believed the additional lane created would only provide relief for around three to four cars. To enter into land acquisition for this tiny strip of land would not make sense to approach independently of the whole project, as more land than needed for this simple fix may end up being required.
Tolls and landfill
The great news of the Government’s decision to not toll on the new section of motorway to Warkworth is certainly a bit of good news that our district truly needs (MM Aug 16).
It does make me wonder why and how they came to this decision so late in the final stages of its construction. Could it have been that our Government was facing two major decisions concerning north Rodney? These being:
This possible tolling of this new section of motorway.
The Chinese/Auckland Council landfill in the Dome Valley.
I’m not too smart, but I’m picking that rather than reject the Chinese/Auckland Council landfill (and thereby upset a major financier of NZ), they found it far easier to appease the local populace by not tolling the new motorway (which is actually giving us our own cash back from the fuel surcharge we’ve been paying for two years).
If they think we will accept the go-ahead of this landfill, then I believe they have another think coming – we’re already seeing signage in our district talking of civil disobedience and one can understand why as this projected landfill, if it were given the green light by our Environment Court, breaks every NZ environmental law and Auckland Council’s own laws concerning the setting up of one of these prehistoric monsters – to put it mildly.
M Purdy, Warkworth