Can­cel­la­tion of fes­ti­val ‘heart-break­ing’

Kapi-Mana News - - FRONT PAGE -

Af­ter 25 years, the Fes­ti­val of the El­e­ments has been can­celled. The vol­un­teer group that runs the event say the year-round work in ap­ply­ing for grants and funds is just too much to con­tinue with. Porirua coun­cil says there will still be a Wai­tangi Day cel­e­bra­tion but doesn’t have any de­tails yet. We asked Neigh­bourly users how they felt about it all.

AN­TO­NIA ALLUM, PAPAKOWHAI

This is heart-break­ing! It is such a won­der­ful day that brings the whole com­mu­nity to­gether; all cul­tures, all ages. And what a great way to com­mem­o­rate Wai­tangi Day with some­thing pos­i­tive, in­clu­sive and for­ward­look­ing. Let’s not let it slip away.

MACE CHONGNEE, TAWA

Wow sad to hear that. Went to it when they first started when my chil­dren were young.

NIKKYWINCHESTER FROM PUKERUA BAY

It’s al­ways been a great fam­i­lyfriendly event. Though the last one didn’t seem to have quite as much go­ing on as pre­vi­ously. Still, it is a lot of hard work to pull to­gether such a big event.

AN­GELA BOWYER, CAN­NONS CREEK

Sad news, we love this day. Ladi6 was awe­some this year, al­though the kids were dis­ap­pointed there wasn’t any car­ni­val rides - my wal­let was happy though. I’m sure our Mayor can come up with some­thing great to re­place it.

DAWN HALL, WHITBY

It has al­ways been a won­der­ful event for fam­i­lies. I felt that it cel­e­brated New Zealand and all of its cul­tures. Such a shame.

MICHELLE GREEN, AS­COT PARK

Sad to see such an iconic event for Porirua and the peo­ple to cel­e­brate this im­por­tant day go. Thank you to all the un­sung vol­un­teers whose pre­cious time and com­mit­ment bought this event to­gether ev­ery year.

HOUSE RATES IN­CREAS­ING

The pro­posed rates in­creases for Porirua show yet again the fu­til­ity of vot­ing and why peo­ple should not be de­prived of their birthright - cit­i­zen­ship as wished for by ex-politi­cians - if they do not. Per­son­nel changed but other­wise it is business as usual. 4.9 per cent of the ap­prox­i­mately $2,500 rates bill I pay is 21⁄ times as much as 4.9 per cent of the lessthan $1000 I had to pay when I first chose to live here. And we are get­ting fewer ser­vices for that ex­or­bi­tant amount. No an­nual solid waste col­lec­tion, no free ratepayer trips to the dump, no rub­bish bags in­cluded in the rates and so-on. The can­di­date I voted for made a big deal out of telling us that rates were not rent. Some of us res­i­dents don’t even get a liv­ing wage these days, yet we are ex­pected to fund salary in­creases for coun­cil­lors.

Fi­nally, who­ever pro­posed 4.9 per cent is in­sult­ing the in­tel­li­gence of the un­for­tu­nate cap­tive ratepay­ers. Be hon­est and call it 5 per cent. (Abridged)

Mal­colm Watts,

Ti­tahi Bay

COM­MER­CIAL RATES

In re­gard to the Porirua City Coun­cil pro­posed changes to the Rev­enue and Fi­nanc­ing Pol­icy. I have a fun­da­men­tal ob­jec­tion to dif­fer­en­tial rat­ing. My his­tory as a com­mer­cial ratepayer dates back to 1990 when I bought my first com­mer­cial prop­erty in Porirua City to set up and op­er­ate a business. Due to my naivety at the time I did not check up on the rates com­po­nent of my out­go­ings and was blown away by the 365 per cent rat­ing dif­fer­en­tial be­tween com­mer­cial and res­i­den­tial prop­er­ties at the time. I strug­gled for many years to cover my costs and re­mem­ber many de­bates about how un­fair this dif­fer­en­tial was.

Now I look into the crys­tal ball and see business be­ing desta­bilised due to tech­no­log­i­cal up­heaval, oner­ous - to the small business - work­place safety re­quire­ments and con­tin­ual change that is mak­ing it a far more dif­fi­cult en­vi­ron­ment to op­er­ate in. Sure we are in a buoy­ant pe­riod in our econ­omy but I do feel that it is false and purely be­ing driven by im­mi­gra­tion and in­fras­truc­tural spend and will not last.

As a com­mer­cial land­lord I see first-hand how dif­fi­cult it is to at­tract ten­ants to my build­ings. I see costs to main­tain them go­ing through the roof. I see costs for com­pli­ance go­ing through the roof.

In my world I can clearly see why com­mer­cial build­ing cap­i­tal val­ues have not in­creased at the rate of res­i­den­tial cap­i­tal val­ues.

I have lived all my life in this city and own my own home and other res­i­den­tial rental prop­erty so I feel that I have a bal­anced viewpoint. One of my com­mer­cial prop­er­ties has a rates bur­den of in ex­cess of 20k p.a. Is this not enough? (Abridged)

WHAT YOU SAY

Cliff Mac­don­ald,

Els­don

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