Weekly column by Kāpiti's Greater Wellington Regional Council representative Penny Gaylor.
This week we released the draft Regional Public Transport Plan for public consultation.
The Kapiti Coast's keen interest is not just because this is a growing community, but because of the huge number of locals already using the train and bus links around our district and through in to Wellington and Porirua.
As we passed the draft for release last week at our GWRC Transport Committee meeting, my colleague and deputy chair of the Transport Committee councillor David Lee summarised the significance of this next version of the plan.
"This is history in the making ... it's a significant shift from just providing a safe, efficient, and affordable public transport system, to public transport being a social and economic enabler!
"That is, public transport that is people-centric, that is strong on decarbonisation, and focused on accessibility - resulting in communities that are connected and inclusive."
Public consultation will be open for a month, I encourage people to have their say and share your thoughts and feedback.
As food for thought, I'll also share the proverb that David closed the Transport Committee with; a quote from urban transport guru Todd Litman.
"Motorists only perceive congestion as a problem they face rather than a problem they cause, and they cannot imagine changing their own travel patterns to benefit others."
Also a reminder that GWRC is urging the community to check for LAWA website warnings and alerts, following the emergence of toxic algal blooms in the Waikanae and Ōtaki rivers.
We're cautioning swimmers and asking people to keep their dogs on leashes.
These warning are in addition to amber alert warnings that are already in place along the Waikanae river in Kāpiti, as well as Waipoua River and Waingawa River in the Ruamahanga Catchment.
Algal mats grow on the rocks in the riverbed and form leathery dark green or black mats, which can break off and accumulate at river edges. As the algal mats dry out they can become light brown colour, and have a distinctive deep earthy or musty smell.
Dogs are mostly at risk because they like the smell and taste of toxic algae. Even a small amount – about the size of a 50 cent piece, can be enough to kill a dog.
To check if an area is suitable for swimming see the LAWA website. If you have been in contact with toxic algae and are feeling unwell see you doctor or ring Healthline 0800 611 116.
Seek urgent medical attention for anyone with breathing difficulties or convulsions.
If you think your dog has swallowed toxic algae, take it to the nearest vet immediately.