With pay rises in the wind for councillors it's got to be said that it would be a great idea.

With better pay structures the opportunity to attract potential councillors will be wonderful.

We might also be swamped with common sense and greater business acumen.

Keep pay rates low and we may as well visit the farm and round up some more sheep for next time.


Kingsley Ridings

Tax landlords
New Zealand doesn't need landlords, instead it needs a government that will actually govern.

Winston Peters threw his lot in with Labour on the basis that something had to be done about the exploitative nature of rich-NZ. Well, Winston, do something. It's notable that a lot of NZ First's support is from retired people that likely have homeless millennial children or grandchildren (or are semi-homeless themselves).

In my view, a tax on second residential properties would be a start: 40 per cent a year would do. The second residences would belong to any of the family group or trust, I suppose, to avoid the wealthy passing them on to their spouses and at-home kids.

Then they might be allowed to avoid the tax by selling to non-related first-home buyer within the first year. Corporations ought to be prohibited from renting houses out. (Abridged)

GJ Philip

Who's paying?
It is great to see that the repair of the museum has a start time but I'm still puzzled by who's paying for the job (Local News, September 7).

Of the estimated $30.5 million, $500,000 is to be spent in the first year followed by $15m in the following two years.

Council "assumes about half of the project could be funded externally". Does that mean that ratepayers have to front up with the other half? Odd.

Why does it need about $15m funded externally and a similar amount from us when the museum had material damage / natural disaster insurance for $56m, the excess being 10 per cent (LGOIMA)?

Why wasn't any insurance contribution mentioned in Stewart Brown's report at the operation and monitoring committee meeting?

If everything was as it should have been, ratepayers would be looking for only about $3m (10 per cent of the estimated cost), insurance covering most of the remainder. We need a clear explanation.

Paddi Hodgkiss