Mahurangi Matters, 18 July 2018 – Readers Letters

Drowning in poo

Thank you for putting “our plea” in your Off the Record article, “Putting the ‘dump’ back into dumpster” (MM May 30). Alas, the sign has not helped. I am unsure which part of, “Please stop throwing your bags of dog poo in our bin” people don’t understand. Is the sign not clear enough? Is the big blue bin just too tempting for target practice? Are some of the dog walkers in training to be the next Tom Walsh or Valerie Adams? Is it really that hard to carry their pooch’s poo home? Or to dispose of it in the nearest dog poo bin, as provided by the council? The reason the sign was erected was that we were getting anywhere between 15 to 20 bags of pooch poo per week thrown into the bin, and most weekends you could double that amount. Take a moment – I’m sure you can imagine the smell on site. Ninety-five per cent landed on target, but we would arrive early Monday morning to find two or three pooch poo bombs had missed the intended target and exploded on the driveway. We, of course, have to clean this up as it’s a health hazard. This weekend just gone was a busy one for Omaha, fish were biting and the sun was shining. Dog walkers were in abundance. So this morning, as if by magic, we have 8 bags in the bin – yes, we counted. Where do we go from here I wonder? I’m really not sure. Maybe your readers have the answer? Some of your readers may say, “Why not put a cover over the bin to stop it”. We did try that, but they just throw them on top of the cover – little neat poo bombs in a ray of multi-coloured bags glistening and baking in the sun. Or perhaps some might say, “A bin is a bin – at least it’s not on the pavement”. True, but it is on our building site, our owner’s garden. Any help on this matter from your readers would be greatly received.

Nik Sadler, Site Manager, Lindesay Construction

Just lease it

The debate about foreign ownership (MM July 4) seems destined to continue ad infinitum.
New Zealand has very little arable land, yet we continue to deplete our reserves at an alarming rate, with urban sprawl and via overseas “land bankers”. Having lived in Europe for some time, the foreign ownership debate hardly arises because the land cannot be sold to foreign buyers, only leased. This allows locals to feel at ease because their country is not being sold from under them, but still provides the benefits of foreign investment. Why, oh why, don’t we apply the same rules here? Everybody wins.

Sarndra Urwin, Warkworth

Man of the people

I would like to compliment Colin Smith on his recent Viewpoint column (MM June 13) and commend him on being a true advocate of his constituents. No need for extensive and inconclusive polls and surveys, no need for a “Rodney First” ticket and certainly no need for political gain by pleasing the Council hierarchy. Colin, like a finely tuned instrument, has an ear for the people, has his community at heart and, above all else, a lifetime of knowledge of the district and its diversities, along with extensive roading experience. At no time has he indicated or inferred any support of a targeted rate, given the abysmal performance of the Araparera Joint Venture, which saw 7000 ratepayer investors kicked to the kerb! We are now saddled with this targeted transport rate. A very strong message was sent from the Wellsford Ward and obviously fell on deaf ears. We can only admire those three local board representatives who heeded our call.

Brian Mason, Tomarata

Taxing times

Mayor Phil Goff promised pre-election that rates would not rise by more than 2.5 per cent. He also promised to put a cap on staffing and wages, but there was a $36 million overrun last year. We have just received our Watercare (Council subsidiary) invoice and accompanying letter informing us that our water costs will increase, as from July 1, 2018, by 2.5 per cent. However, they conveniently forgot to say that our meter charges would increase by 3.3 per cent and our wastewater volumetric charges by 3.27 per cent. Mayor Goff and the Rodney Local Board can call the increased petrol tax and the targeted transport rate of $150 per year whatever they like, but it’s still a rate rise. If it barks like a dog and looks like a dog, I’m pretty sure it’s a dog. James McNabb, from Wellsford, (MM June 13) is correct when he wants to know how Council expects low income citizens and pensioners to find the extra finances to meet these exorbitant financial demands. Come on Council, set some realistic goals and do what you promised.

Leo Hume, Algies Bay