In December a year ago, the road safety intersection upgrade of Belk Rd/SH29 should have been completed as the fine planning, property purchase and community consultation was completed. It was the very best example of working together with the NZTA and the people.

But before the work could be started a consent was required from the Bay of Plenty Regional Council.

For over a year the regional council stuffed around. They stuffed around just over a metre to be added to an existing culvert, in order to give a safer left-hand turn into Belk Rd.

What a shameful decision consenting process we have endured for a year. Then without telling the community NZTA has thrown in the towel on the pretext of cost and that the road will not be needed in the future.


Not that anyone can give a timeline and, in the meantime, people will continue to risk their lives getting on to and exiting SH29. How on earth can a community have confidence in a system that takes forever to make a decision. I refuse to accept such gross incompetence. It is just not good enough. The community deserves better.

Margaret Murray-Benge

Same property, higher rates

New valuations only mean one thing - a rates increase.

Valuations will be used to calculate the share of rates.

"Improved value to the land or buildings or other structural improvements in the last three months." We haven't done any of these so why has this been increased?

We are paying extra rates for something we haven't done.

How do they know what people have or have not done to their properties? Has anyone been round to check? (Abridged)

Janet Drake

Unsafe highway dividing community

On December 10 (Local News, November 19) new bus services will be introduced for the Western Bay of Plenty.

We desperately need to increase bus patronage as the roads are becoming increasingly congested and our current use of buses is low and declining.

The transport planners at the Bay of Plenty Regional Council have been responding to community requests and trying hard to provide a bus stop for the several thousand residents of Whakamarama and Plummers Pt.

We should be able to catch either the Omokoroa/Tauranga or Katikati/Tauranga bus services, a total of nine buses each way per day.

Unfortunately due to the nature of SH2 it has proved impossible to provide a safe bus stop.

We will be forced to watch the near-empty subsidised buses drive past without stopping.

The highway is not fit for purpose. We can not walk, cycle, catch a bus or safely drive through the SH2 intersections.

The highway divides our community as there is no safe way to cross.

David Riley

The Bay of Plenty Times welcomes letters from readers. Please note the following:

• Letters should not exceed 200 words.

• They should be opinion based on facts or current events.

• If possible, please email.

• No noms-de-plume.

• Letters will be published with names and suburb/city.

• Please include full name, address and contact details for our records only.

• Local letter writers given preference.

• Rejected letters are not normally acknowledged.

• Letters may be edited, abridged, or rejected at the Editor's discretion.

• The Editor's decision on publication is final.

Email or write to the Editor, Bay of Plenty Times, Private Bag, Tauranga