below the Kitekite Falls (NZ Herald, July 13) proposed by Auckland Council's manager of regional parks is a travesty.
People have been crossing this stream for around 100 years and it is part of the enjoyment of the walk that you have to get up close and personal with nature.
But more than that, the proposal is completely contrary to the Regional Parks Management Plan 2010. I chaired the development of this plan and hundreds of people had a say before it was finalised.
It is now the statutory plan governing what happens in our regional parks and there is no mention of a bridge at Kitekite Falls. In fact the plan says that unless a development is explicitly stated within the plan, it must be treated as a variation to the plan and go through a legal process with full public consultation.
The fact that it has been proceeding "under the radar" and was only flushed out when local people saw surveyors at the falls, is not the way to proceed.
The community of Piha and the public of Auckland – our tramping clubs, visitors, and the wider regional public – have a right to have a say.
The wilderness of the Waitākere Ranges is the heritage of Aucklanders – the creation of the park chosen as the official project to celebrate 100 years of the settlement of Auckland - and we must to guard against the incremental sanitising of its natural splendour in some misplaced desire to make the track easier for visitors.
Sandra Coney, Piha.
Denis Satalic (NZ Herald, July 18), and no doubt others, worry about
to power an increase in electric cars.
We could electrify every car in the country for around half of the electricity that the aluminium smelter uses. Like a lot of international companies using our natural resources, the smelter doesn't pay much tax here after using their transfer pricing (tax reduction) mechanisms to get their product offshore to related entities at below market pricing, and they pay very little for their electricity.
NZ Inc would save billions of dollars in avoided transport fuel imports, even after having spent $750m to upgrade the grid north of Manapouri. This is a win-win – moving our transport fuel to a renewable indigenous
energy source, from its current non-renewable sources in corrupt or war-torn regions.
Not to mention the reduction in related respiratory diseases in our cities.
Secondly, the currently consented renewable generation plant that has yet to have been built has a capacity of around 40 per cent greater generation than what our light vehicle fleet would use. Our gentailers are holding this generation back until there is sufficient load to sell it to, in order to keep the wholesale prices up.
Russell Baillie, Mt Eden.
In the US, 127 mayors of cities have adopted electric vehicles as an initiative to start greening their country starting locally.
Maybe New Zealand councils and all government bodies should only buy electric cars and trucks to show eco-solidarity?
The new Hyundai Kona gets 400km on a single charge and, with a little subsidy by a supportive Ministry of Transport, should cost about $35,000 if bought in a bulk order by an eco warrior dealer.
Rob Buchanan, Kerikeri.
I could not agree more with other correspondents, regarding the
who attacked the tourists (NZ Herald, July 11). What on Earth was the judge thinking on just home detention? And fining him as well, how does anyone expect to receive any money from an unemployed yob? I am disgusted with the outcome of this case.
R O'Neill, Te Aroha
The recent revelation from Treasury that the cost of the Auckland City Rail Link project could blow out by a further $600m is of real concern with the likely implication for ratepayers across Auckland.
Auckland Council is already reaching its maximum debt limit, while basic maintenance of the city's infrastructure is not being kept up with dirty graffiti covered trains and roads and footpaths which are crumbling.
Auckland Council needs to reign in the out-of-control Auckland Transport and start reducing wasteful spending on things such as unnecessary new colour schemes on the trains, running empty buses around Pukekohe and trains after 9pm which very few people use (and even fewer pay to use), and the proposal to allow under 16s to ride public transport for free from September.
T Gray, Dannemora.
"Auckland's Unitary Plan defies the doom gloom" by James Kellow (NZ Herald, July 10) was as self-serving an article as possible.
Mr Kellow finances residential development and needs to convince himself that such developments have merit.
Any reasonable person observing the developments around Auckland in new suburbs (Whenuapai, Hobsonville Point) or as developments in isolation in established residential areas will be struck by how ugly they are with little architectural merit. They are what I call shoebox designs stuck together, and often no or very poor amenities – views, light, usable outdoor space and parking and or storage areas.
The Unitary Plan increased the number of such developments and made them uglier than previously, given council planning staff's inability or lack of interest to police modest controls and the lack of consultation by commissioners who rezoned whole areas unbeknown until afterwards by landowners.
Auckland is fast becoming an ugly residential city – all thanks to the Unitary Plan.
Graham Parfitt. Murrays Bay.
Lurking behind the ODI final was an entirely different aspect. The Black Caps are due to meet the Aussies at the hugely popular Boxing Day Test to be held at the MCG - an event that is traditionally attended by around 90,000.
The promoters of this event must have had anxious moments when we lost three ODI games in a row. Further poor ODI performances by our guys would have wounded the Melbourne gate takings. The promoters of the test would have been hoping for good performance by Kane and his talented men. They now have their wish. Game on, and no more nonsense with the rules of this great game.
Vern Walker, Green Bay.
"Bring me your tired, your hungry, your poor" are the words that greeted my immigrant grandparents as they arrived at Ellis Island at the turn of the 20th century. It is a profound covenant that America has kept faith with for more than 100 years.
We are, in large part, a country of immigrants who through sheer hard work helped America achieve economic prosperity and stability. If we were to follow the advice of the president "that if we don't support the US" (code for daring to criticise POTUS) we can go back to where we came from, would make for a very diminished United States. In actual fact, there would be few people left in America.
As supposedly the most powerful and compassionate country in the world, can the America I love, and the America that welcomed my grandparents, not rally and decry these xenophobic and racist comments from a president who belittles anyone who disagrees with him? We need to remember we are a diverse nation that upholds and cherishes the ideals of humanity and tolerance as a cornerstone of our democracy. We forget this at our peril.
Mary Hearn, Glendowie.
How will the Government's
to road safety (NZ Herald, July 18) stop drunk and drugged drivers, people who fall asleep at the wheel and all the thousands of unlicensed drivers who have no concept of the road rules from killing and maiming?
This is just another example of an incompetent government about to spend mega dollars for no result.
Jock MacVicar, Hauraki.
by 40 per cent over the next 10 years, how pathetic. I would hate to one of the 60 per cent that did not make the cut, or worse still one of my family.
The aim should be for a 100 per cent reduction and hopefully we will get a reasonable reduction, maybe 40 per cent.
The problem is that they are blaming the roads not the real culprits, the drivers. The sooner they confiscate the phones of those caught using their phones while driving the better. A driver whom I asked about this penalty thought it was too tough, is that not the point?
Bob Wichman, Botany.
Short & Sweet
Trump was right, each of three of the four women congressional representatives that he tweeted about did come from a country with catastrophic administration "the worst, most corrupt, and inept in the world".
Chris Devereaux, Matakana.
Someone else should take his tweetie toy off him. H E H Perkins, Botany Downs.
Sensible answer: England hold the cup for two years and New Zealand hold it for next two years. The world knows the game was tied. Margaret Campbell, Howick.
Mike Cook is right, the rules were in place prior to the tournament. The problem being the umpires did not follow the rules. Bryan Smith, Mclaren Falls.
Would someone please advise TV presenter John Campbell that using the words "what the hell" and "bugger" is inappropriate/unacceptable on national television. Jan Madden, Kerikeri.
How about someone we can vote for: Coralie van Camp for the Auckland mayoralty?
Jane Margaret Livingstone, Remuera.
The winner of the women's Wimbledon final earned 42,000 pounds a minute and the men's winner won 8000 pounds a minute. So the women are now earning more than the men. Will the men complain?
Dave Miller, Rotorua.
It seems a good idea to swap our criminals (many trained in Australia from childhood) for their banks. Roll it out. D Reid, Cockle Bay.