When Manukau City Council recognised how significant Ihumātao is to Māori, it imposed several "planning instruments" which effectively "locked-up" the land and prevented its use for urban forms of development.
These included a Notice of Requirement, so the land could be included in the Otuataua
Stonefields Reserve as public open space.
The result was that the land owners could only get a very low price for their properties, the only possible buyer would be the council as no one else could do anything with the land.
All land should have an intrinsic value based on its natural features and amenities, no
matter what side of the road it is on, and the land on the other side of the road was able to be developed so essentially all the land should have a similar value.
The council was imposing unreasonable limitations on the property owners and the Environment Court decision recognised this. If the council had offered the landowners a fair market price, willing buyer/willing seller, this situation would never have escalated the way it has.
If the council had not mishandled this so badly, the land would be part of the Stonefields Reserve as public open space, no protests, and the ratepayer would not be having to find considerably more money to right the wrong of 150 years ago.
Dudley Barton, Māngere.
What an excellent article by Prue Kapua about the role of the 2012 Environment Court decision which set aside the original designation of Ihumātao as open space, leading to Auckland Council fast-tracking plans for urban development.
Conservation, heritage and taonga are the big casualties in recent years under the RMA, Unitary plan and Auckland Council. A 400-year-old healthy kauri will be removed in Titirangi as the unitary plan does not consider the area to be a "significant ecological area". Watercare is building an industrial complex the size of a Westfield mall in the small forested community of Woodlands Park and removing healthy kauri and other natives in the process. This will take place in a community protected by the Waitakere Ranges Heritage Act which recognises the area's unique conservation value.
My European visitors are amazed by these types of decisions that obliterate our heritage, as are many New Zealanders.
J Vink, Titirangi.
I'm an immigrant, a Kiwi Muslim and I am appalled by the comments from this Wellington constituent (NZ Herald, August 14).
I'd like to know what the constituent means by "people who will change our communities and refuse to follow NZ law/customs". As a New Zealander and practising Muslim, do I want Shariah to rule New Zealand? No. The Qur'an clearly says "there is no compulsion in religion". Furthermore, Shariah obliges Muslims to be loyal to their nation of residence. Therefore, Kiwi Muslims must adhere to New Zealand law as the supreme law of the land.
Christchurch was only one tragedy on a long list of acts of white supremacist terrorism in the West. White supremacy terrorism remains a far greater threat to New Zealand values and customs than any immigrant or religious group.
This is a time where we all need to stand united. We ask you to recognise that there is a need to root out white supremacy extremism. It's not enough to simply not be racist; you must be anti-racist.
Our job isn't to sit in mosques and be shot. Rather, our job is to be patriotic citizens and valuable contributors to New Zealand society. And this can only be achieved through understanding and collaboration.
Mohamed Anas Raheem, Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama'at New Zealand
Fran O'Sullivan's article on CEOs (NZ Herald, August 15) got me thinking about a suggestion I heard some years ago, namely that applicants for CEO positions should be required to tender for their salaries. This would allow boards to consider skills, experience and cost as a total package and appoint the "best" candidate according to a combination of all three. For example, a keen candidate may be willing to accept a lower salary package on appointment in order to demonstrate his or her potential, allowing future payments to be awarded on a performance basis. It would also allow the perceived wisdom that "you have to pay top salaries to attract top people" to be properly tested.
Howard Edwards, Coatesville.
Game or sport?
Video game competitions should not be considered sports. They should be called E Games. Sport is "an activity involving physical exertion". If we want to continue New Zealand's proud tradition of high achievement in both Olympics and Commonwealth Games we need our young people to play sport. This is activity that involves running, jumping or throwing. Not sitting on a chair twiddling a few knobs. Oh, and by the way, I don't consider darts to be a sport either. It is a game like pool or Monopoly.
Glen Stanton, Mairangi Bay.
Brian Rudman (NZ Herald, August 14) is correct, it is appalling that the installation of all these cameras and all this technology to support them and (let's be honest) facial recognition in the next breath, could possibly happen without any political decision and without any chance for the public to take part in the debate.
In more senses than one, we are beyond 1984. This is yet another example of people in positions of power disregarding the sanctity of human individuality.
It is time to take a leaf out of Hong Kong's book and protest at the threatened loss of our freedom.
Peter Newfield, Takapuna.
It is disturbing to read of the letter, co-authored by Dr Johnston (NZ Herald, August 14), in which the Coroner's report on the death of Sapphire Williams is questioned - on the grounds of scientific accuracy. Is it perhaps to condone alcohol consumption when pregnant, particularly of the amount mentioned?
Rather more importantly, pregnancy and alcohol do not mix and should never be encouraged. This is not being PC but simply sensible.
Premature infant and neo-natal deaths are too high now, as is the incidence of foetal-alcohol syndrome.
Dr Williams and her colleagues have not done obstetrics any service. I question why such a letter was written; might it have been better sent privately?
Dr Bryan Frost, Morrinsville.
The latest generation of rental e-scooters appearing in Auckland are largely dark coloured, making them difficult to see and a danger in poor light conditions.
When parked, they often blow/fall over, their protruding handlebars worsening the collision hazard for passersby.
It should be compulsory for rental bikes and scooters to have mostly reflective colours, especially at their extremities, such as handlebars.
Matt McLean, Grey Lynn.
The minimum requirements for a valid contract are; there must be an offer by one party and acceptance by another and there must be consideration involved (usually some form of monetary value).
Time does not a feature in these minimums and yet it is one of the most important elements of many contracts.
A contract may be either in a written form or verbally and the verbal ones are causing the most grief for a lot of people due to excessive break costs being imposed. We have telephone and door-to-door salespeople establishing contracts for phone, electricity and other key services by cold calling people at home.
These are, in essence, verbal contracts and the discussion forms the basis of an individual's understanding but is very difficult to prove later if things go wrong or a person wants to cancel.
In my view, where a contract is established by phone or door-to-door and the organisation provides services based on a monthly cycle, the notice period for exiting the contract should be no longer than one month without penalty.
I also believe that if banks can alter their interest rates in mortgage contracts by giving a period of notice, then the customer should also be allowed the same period to cancel their contract if required, without penalty.
Bill Cromwell, Welcome Bay.
Carrying a full load of broken fencing and hedge clippings from the bach at Whangapoua on a large double-axle trailer last Thursday, we decided to give the Thames tip a go. Imagine our surprise when the attendant said "that will be $15".
There was a constant flow of vans and cars while we were there and the usual heavy equipment to deal with it. As an example of the Thames Council's enterprise, unwanted but still usable goods were sold (recycled) in a warehouse on the same grounds.
If you lived in South Auckland, you could take the same load to the Thames tip and return home still well ahead in the wallet department.
Something has to be rotten in the state of Denmark for Auckland Council to charge $120. Even accounting for a larger-scale operation, $120 is exorbitant and one can only conclude fleece gathering, and I once thought the council were not allowed profiteering of ratepayers' hard-earned cash.
Gary Hollis, Mellons Bay.
Letters: Census, child arrests, prison voters, investments and Fonterra
Letters: Gun buy-back, OCR, consumerism, rugby, the homeless and Peter Thiel
Letters: Interest rates, child health, call centres and the All Blacks
Short & Sweet
The felons are locked up for anti-social behaviour so why should they enjoy any benefit of society's rights and privileges? The furore over this nonsense defies belief.
Rob Paterson, Mt Maunganui.
If you want to be able to vote, keep out of prison. Quite simple really. Brenda Barnes, St Heliers.
It looks like a two-horse race for mayor and things have got off to a fiery start. Keep it clean, guys, and may the best man win. Barry Wood, Cockle Bay.
Message to the All Blacks: The AIG on your jerseys stands for "A*** Into Gear". Ian Cotter, Mt Maunganui
The latest cut in the OCR to 1 per cent is no joke. How can this rate be lower than inflation at 1.5 per cent? Steve Lincoln, Botany Downs.
Denis Glover's famous poetic line is actually "Quardle oodle ardle wardle doodle". The magpies say. John L R Allum, Thames.
Way to go Shane Jones, telling it the way it is with Fonterra and their big fat executive ongoing payments. Why are the cow cockies not revolting against this massive injustice?
Marie Kaire, Whangārei.
Following the recent stabbings in the Sydney CBD, forget the lasers and just give our police force a plastic crate and two chairs. Rae McGregor, Mt Eden.