Kapi-Mana News : August 30th 2011
8 KAPI-MANA NEWS, AUGUST 30, 2011 OPINION 3214052AA LETTERS EKERS' WEEK Editor, So much for the mayor claiming a rates increase of 5.2 per cent for the 2011-2012 year. The Porirua City Council rates assessment for our Whitby property has increased by 8.6 per cent yet the capital value has reduced by $20,000. Greater Wellington Regional Council s portion of the rates increased by 7.95 per cent! Sorry, but these sorts of increases are totally unsustainable for the average homeowner. How many households do you know of that are achieving 8 to 9 per cent annual increases in their income to offset these additional living costs, and how come neighbouring suburbs under the jurisdiction of other councils can provide the same services as Porirua for so much less? If the reason is down to the volume of households and shortage of businesses in Porirua, then surely amalgamation is the only way forward as there is only so much juice in the lemon. PETE JENKINS, Whitby. Perform first Editor, I find it incredible that Liz Kelly deems that she can don the hat of councillor when she feels like it and that she thinks there are times when she is not a councillor. Sadly Liz Kelly s actions seem to be all for Liz Kelly and not the people of Porirua area, and have for quite some time now. I remember when at the first meeting of the council at the last tenure  she requested that councillors got a pay rise. To Ms Kelly, I say perform first before you ask for such a thing, and this latest tirade of yours certainly tells me you don t deserve a councillor s pay rise. Remember the nickname you have in council ranks Ms Kelly, 3-vote Kelly . Remember also you serve the people at your choice -- nobody asked you to be a councillor. You can always quit if it doesn t suit your needs.WAYNE FLINT, Titahi Bay. Hole hearted thanks Editor, On Sunday, August 21, my husband and I (along with many others) took a walk along Plimmerton Beach in the lovely winter sunshine. While walking along Sunset Parade we saw cane chairs put on their sides on the footpath and a few people milling around. As we got closer we discovered these chairs and people were protecting pedestrians from falling into a deep hole in the footpath. The hole was about half a metre in diameter and we could see the beach through it. We were told the wash out was about two to three metres long under the footpath. Obviously the tides have eroded the stone wall and broken down the footpath structure. We continued our walk and on our return found one man standing guard, waiting on the PCC workmen to come to make the area safe. I could go on about the dangers that hole in the footpath could have caused -- we can all imagine the consequences. But I want to say thank-you to the gentleman who gave up part of his Sunday afternoon to warn people of the hole. Thank-you kind gentleman, we certainly appreciated your efforts. ANNE KAVANAGH, Papakowhai. Taxis need parks Editor, There was an article recently about the person who parked his vehicle on the taxi stand at Countdown Porirua, resulting in a verbal exchange between two Porirua taxi operators and the person concerned. I see it has been brought up again by Jennifer Sutcliffe of Tawa. This is not an isolated incident as taxi operators have to daily contend with motorists who stop on or park on a taxi stand and are abusive when signalled to move off, and in some cases, have parked their vehicle, locked it, and gone about their business in the city without a thought of the inconvenience it causes to the taxis when they drive on to or attempt to occupy the stand, whereby they can conduct their business of transporting customers. The use of the taxi stands in this manner has occurred on the Countdown stand as stated prior, but has also happened at the stand in front of the Porirua New World. It is also becoming prevalent on the taxi stand on the eastern side of the railway station where, despite there being an abundance of vacant public parking spaces, taxis are unable to gain access to the stand because people have parked there and will not shift, even though they are aware of the taxis presence. In this vein I have formed the following opinion in that these motorists cannot understand the words Taxi Stand (or they cannot read). To you all I say, being a taxi operator is a difficult enough business without having to contend with ignorant yokels who persist in parking on the stands wherein we conduct our business. We need access to the stands as a large number of our customers are the elderly, those with disabilities, young mothers and their children, most of whom have no vehicle of their own or are unable to drive for one reason or another. Stay off the taxi stands -- they are for taxis after all. TIEKI KAA, Waitangirua. Help of strangers Editor, I wish to say a huge thank-you to two guys. On June 19 my bike brakes failed downhill and I lay in the gutter. One guy picked me and the bike up. When I found the bike chain was off, further down the road, another guy put it back on, and I rode home with no brakes. All this in pouring rain. God bless you both. MIRIAM BAKER, Tawa. Students impress Editor, Last Friday evening, somewhat begrudgingly, I went to the Tawa College production of Standing Ovation 2. Wow! The talent, costumes, voices, dancing, musical arrangement, was outstanding. Such energy from 80-odd young people is a joy to behold -- especially when teens reportedly are difficult. Whoever choreographed and dreamt up Mac Arthur Park, filmed at North City plaza, has huge vision and imagination. That for me was a highlight. Stunning. Well done to Tawa College. RON BRENARD, Tawa. Gully costs Editor, The letter to editor from Carole Naylor (KMN, August 23), asks, I trust the council is not giving any significant funding towards this project (Transmission Gully) . In PCC s current 10-year plan, there is an amount of $97m towards the cost of Transmission Gully link roads. That s more than PCC has spent on road maintenance in the past 50 years, although given the state of our roads, most drivers and passengers won t be surprised. The good news (not really), is the council will borrow the money. The bad news is we can all look forward to more rate rises in excess of inflation, as can our children and grandchildren. If you live near the proposed route of the road, drop a line to our mayor and chief executive, as they are always on the lookout for new multimillion-dollar reserves. ANDREW WELLUM, Camborne. PCC Asset Management and Operations general manager Peter Bailey responds: Mr Wellum is wrong. As outlined on page 56 of the 2009-2019 Long Term Plan, the $97.9 million is the full cost of the Transmission Gully link roads. The council has planned in the LTP that Porirua ratepayers will contribute 5 per cent ($4 million) of the total cost once subsidies from the New Zealand Transport Agency are taken into account. 'Great investment' banners no bargain Editor, What a bargain we got with those banners our city council invested $30,000 in not quite a year ago. A great investment, we were told, because they would give visitors a taste of what they could expect in our city. Shoddy, short-term rubbish doesn t seem to me the ideal portrayal of our city. Did we get any guarantees with these things? MIKE DUNCAN, Titahi Bay. PCC communications and marketing manager Barbara Bercic responds: The damage to the two banners is a result of harsh weather and their position on the bridge where they cop the full intensity of the wind. As they were all in line for replacement with Rugby World Cup banners this week (the timing strictly determined by RWC 2011), it was not economic for us to pay for traffic management contractors to come out twice in close in succession.
August 23rd 2011
September 6th 2011