Is this hanging over your home?
Today’s new local body buzz-phrase: ‘‘Urban Airshed’’.
You will hear plenty about the term if the latest not-so-super-city fetish gets off the ground and some woodburners are banned.
Reader Aidan Crabtree fired literary warning shots in this column last week.
‘‘The proposed bylaw has been put on hold yet again; is the hope that if it is put off enough times it may get to slip through unnoticed? Why has this idea not been scrapped altogether by now; are they hoping the protest will die down?’’
Council spokesman Colin Craig replied: ‘‘The proposed bylaw on open fire and woodburners in urban areas of Auckland, at some time in the future, has been put on hold for a few months while the council considers its effects on the community.
‘‘If the council wants to proceed with the bylaw in whatever form it takes there will be an extensive public consultation process.’’ There had better be. Crabtree wrote again and Craig’s reply included a section from a master map of the mysterious ‘‘Urban Airshed’’ which includes Crabtree’s own Westridge Rd – and perhaps your street too.
Did you know about the Urban Airshed and its relationship to your home, even up to when you try to sell it? From Craig’s reply: ‘‘Westridge Rd is included in the Auckland Urban Airshed.
‘‘The council has not yet made a final decision on what will be included in the proposed Air Quality Bylaw before it is notified for public submission – this decision may be made in April or May.
‘‘I understand, however, that the point of sale rule may remain so that if you are in the Auckland Urban Airshed and you sell your house, you would be required to disable an indoor open fire if you have one or dispose of any pre-2005 woodburners in the house, prior to the sale of the house.’’
Now you know.
From Paul Gillespie, Windsor Park: ‘‘Taking over public road space paid for mainly by motorists and turning it into cycle lanes for cyclists who haven’t contributed anything to the cost, must be questioned.
‘‘Private citizens own one or more home trailers, boat trailers, caravans, cars, station wagons, SUVs, utes, campervans, motor cycles, quad bikes, etc.
‘‘People using these on a public road are legally required to have a user’s licence to prove they (a) know the road rules, (b) are mature enough to use public roads, (c) are capable of using the vehicle/s they own on public roads.
‘‘They legally need to (1) pay a 12-month registration fee for each type of vehicle they own in spite of only being able to use two types of vehicle at the most on the road at any one time, (2) pay ACC levies for each vehicle, (3) have a warrant of fitness for each vehicle owned to prove it is road worthy.
‘‘Now what are cycle owners cur- rently required to do to before they use publicly funded roading for their cycles? ‘‘Absolutely nothing. ‘‘Cyclists have no age restrictions, pay no ACC levies, have no licence to show capability, have no WOF to show their cycles are safe to use among fast-moving traffic, make no financial contribution to the expensive cycle lanes and off-road areas provided for them, have no registration to identify the many cyclists who frequently run red lights and give way signs, etc, endangering other road users.
‘‘This freebee mentality most cyclists seem to expect must be challenged in this day and age of user pays.
‘‘What right do these people have to assume they should not (1) contribute to the expense of the services provided for them, (2) have an age limit for people cycling on the same public roads used by all manner of vehicles with other drivers who must be at least 15 years of age, (3) have a road worthy certificate for their cycle, as required for other road user vehicles, (4) have a rider’s licence to show they have a knowledge of road rules, and (5) have registration for their cycle as a means of identification?’’
User pays: ‘‘This freebee mentality most cyclists seem to expect must be challenged.’’