An­other rea­son?

The Northland Age - - Opinion -

Is this yet an­other rea­son why Far North District Coun­cil’s roads go ne­glected?

I re­ceived an email dated Oc­to­ber 4, 2017, in re­sponse to a ques­tion re­lat­ing to main­te­nance of a par­tic­u­lar por­tion of road coun­cil ob­tained via Gazette No­tice in 1996 /1997.

The re­sponse from coun­cil’s le­gal ser­vices man­ager is very re­veal­ing, I quote: ‘How­ever, as a mat­ter of le­gal in­ter­est, I note that the New Zealand lo­cal au­thor­i­ties are un­der no le­gal obli­ga­tion to main­tain coun­cil -owned formed roads in the case of a pa­per road, which ex­ists on pa­per but which has not been con­structed, there is no le­gal obli­ga­tion to con­struct formed roads. And in the case of roads that have been con­structed, coun­cils are not legally re­quired to main­tain those roads to a par­tic­u­lar stan­dard.

‘In some cases in ru­ral ar­eas formed roads were not con­structed by the coun­cils but by pri­vate land own­ers. Coun­cil can even de­cide to dis­con­tinue main­te­nance of formed roads. This is legally known as non­fea­sance.

Safety obli­ga­tions re­main, how­ever, and warn­ing signs may have to be erected. ‘For ex­am­ple, I re­call some years ago a South Is­land coun­cil an­nounced that is was go­ing to dis­con­tinue main­te­nance on one of its ru­ral roads be­cause it could not af­ford the on­go­ing costs.

‘Any­way, the point I am mak­ing in an ef­fort to make use­ful clar­i­fi­ca­tion, is that un­less there are other fac­tors of which I’m not aware, the coun­cil is un­der no le­gal obli­ga­tion to main­tain the por­tion of coun­cil-owned le­gal road, i.e the formed road­way to which you ap­pear to re­fer.’

This state­ment does raise a num­ber of ques­tions re­gard­ing the fail­ure of

main­te­nance on coun­cil roads / ru­ral roads.

(1) Coun­cil col­lects a rate in re­la­tion to road­ing in the Far North, which ap­pears goes into one big bucket. Is this cor­rect? (2) What is the to­tal amount col­lected from this road rate for the last five years? Please pro­vide fac­tual in­for­ma­tion .

(3) How much of this road­ing rate was spent in Kerik­eri for each of the past five years?

(4) Is the state­ment made by this staff mem­ber cor­rect?

(5) If this state­ment is cor­rect, is this the rea­son for non-main­te­nance in the Real Far North, Hokianga, Kaikohe, Te Ha­pua , Te Koe and Horeke, Pe­ria? Please sup­ply a fac­tual break­down of all road­ing main­te­nance for the above-men­tioned ar­eas for each year of the last five years. (6) How many roads con­structed by pri­vate land own­ers are be­ing rated? Please sup­ply the ac­tual true facts and not the usual spin and de­nial, af­ter all it’s our ratepayer funds that are be­ing used, or abused, in my opin­ion.

DES MA­HONEY

RD1 Kaitaia

Dunedin is get­ting a hospi­tal up­grade, Ran­furly’s Ma­ni­a­toto Base hospi­tal got a re­de­vel­op­ment, and now North­land is at the be­gin­ning of its jour­ney.

I at­tended the pub­lic open day for the pro­posed Whangarei Hospi­tal re­zon­ing.To my sur­prise, I found out it is cur­rently zoned res­i­den­tial. The North­land District Health Board is work­ing to change the zon­ing to a spe­cial pur­pose hospi­tal zone. If, or when, this is per­mit­ted, it will be the start of a whole new de­vel­op­ment as sadly our 60-year-old con­crete land­mark is well past its use-by­date.

As most of you are aware, our DHB has been un­der ex­treme fi­nan­cial pres­sure for a va­ri­ety of rea­sons. Firstly, we have the old­est pop­u­la­tion in the coun­try, and se­condly, we have the high­est num­ber of va­cant houses in New Zealand.

There are sev­eral rea­sons be­hind this, but two ma­jor con­tribut­ing fac­tors are the pop­u­lar­ity of our east coast beaches, and, when it comes to cen­sus night, nor­mally con­ducted in the chilly months, most peo­ple have re­turned to their Auck­land homes. Then when sum­mer re­turns, our pop­u­la­tion sky­rock­ets, and so does the de­mand, but the pop­u­la­tion boom re­mains un­ac­counted for when it comes to the dish­ing out of funds for items such as health.

The DHB has three main plans go­ing for­ward, with a green field ap­proach be­ing the pop­u­lar op­tion, which is ba­si­cally start­ing again on a new part of the grounds. Fund­ing of this project is the huge chal­lenge, but with a record num­ber of MPs liv­ing in this catch area, the tim­ing is right.

In ad­di­tion, Whangarei has just seen one of New Zealand’s high­est in­creases in house prices, which sup­ports the ex­pected high pop­u­la­tion growth over the next decade in North­land.

I would en­cour­age you all to take an in­ter­est and give feed­back on the pro­posed plan change. This can be done on­line by vis­it­ing the North­land DHB’s

web­site. Look for the item called Whangarei Hospi­tal Plan (Zone) Change Ap­pli­ca­tion.

The more the pub­lic takes part in the con­sul­ta­tion the bet­ter-in­formed pol­icy mak­ers are, the more likely we are to end up with a health ser­vice that caters for all of the com­mu­nity, but you must take part to make sure your voice is heard. You can’t rely on some­one in­ter­pret­ing your si­lence as a call for ac­tion on cer­tain mat­ters.

North­land Fed­er­ated Farm­ers is in sup­port of the plan change, and looks for­ward with in­ter­est to see­ing this am­bi­tious but over­due project take shape over the next 15 years.

JOHN BLACKWELL

Pres­i­dent Fed­er­ated Farm­ers North­land Ms Ardern has floated many red her­rings to dis­guise her in­abil­ity to gov­ern or even con­trol Cab­i­net, or to grasp sim­ple eco­nomic con­cepts and pro­duce a vi­able fis­cal bud­get.

We have new taxes on petrol etc, wage deals with nurses and po­lice, plus im­mi­nent deals with mid­wives and strik­ing an­tag­o­nis­tic mil­i­tant teach­ers, who de­spite EPA rec­om­men­da­tions won’t ac­cept any deal. Com­mit­tees have been set up on all top­ics by the score to cover up the cracks, yet noth­ing will come of these.

Inane ‘com­mis­sions’ on his­toric abuse ($80 mil­lon) men­tal health, cap­i­tal gains taxes, en­quiries into oil com­pa­nies, banks, su­per­mar­kets and elec­tric­ity in­dus­try, plus Lit­tle’s jus­tice fo­rum for of­fend­ers (ex­clud­ing vic­tims), bud­geted at $750,000 yet cost­ing $1.5 mil­lion.

Ki­wibuild is a sham­bles, with rules changed willy nilly, en­cour­ag­ing rort­ing, and it doesn’t even ad­dress per­ceived/ imag­i­nary hous­ing short­ages at all.

Oh, and don’t over­look the PGFund forestry fi­asco.

The Sroubek de­ba­cle won’t go away; this of­fender needs de­port­ing and LeesGal­loway needs to re­sign. On the bright side, the Czechs look to be seek­ing ex­tra­di­tion, and hope­fully will do the job for us.

Then of course we have Ms Ardern’s pet hobby horses, child poverty, men­tal ill­ness, and even the Ratana Church, a $3 mil­lion-plus hand­out with over­tones of re­li­gion race and pol­i­tics, the Aussie on­go­ing asy­lum seek­ers saga, and the Pike River re-en­try ab­sur­dity, cost­ing $35 mil­lion-plus. Two min­is­ters have al­ready bit­ten the dust, and an­other cou­ple look sure to fol­low.

All this non­sense is just the tip of the ice­berg, and fits per­fectly into the so­cial­ist/left­ist phi­los­o­phy of envy, fail­ure, ar­ro­gance, ig­no­rance, and the equal shar­ing of mis­eries by ev­ery­one — ac­com­pa­nied by the in­evitable credo of no open­ness, trans­parency, hon­esty or ac­count­abil­ity tick­ing all the wrong boxes in just one year.

Stop Press: United Na­tions Global Com­pact on Im­mi­gra­tion projects 59,000,000 im­mi­grants (most il­le­gal) world­wide by 2025. This UN mi­grant pact is a death sen­tence on all West­ern na­tions, so re­ject it now. Sig­na­ture date is De­cem­ber 10, 2018, and Ardern’s coali­tion govern­ment must not sign be­cause mi­gra­tion can­not be dic­tated by an in­ter­na­tional body, par­tic­u­larly not the dys­func­tional dis­cred­ited and delu­sional United Na­tions.

See Janet Atkin­son UK on You tube and NZCPR.com for de­tails.

Politi­cians will learn to their cost they can’t get in­side or fix peo­ple’s heads, or ad­dress or com­pen­sate for per­ceived his­toric griev­ances of any sort, or con­trol the world. ROB PATERSON Mount Maun­ganui

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