Make only what's needed
I note one school has already opted out of free meals in schools as the cost of revamping the school kitchen would be far too great.
Why do all the children in the school need to be fed when there are only a certain number of children in schools or kindergartens that require lunch?
I help make sandwiches with other volunteers four days a week which St Vincent de Paul delivers to some schools and kindergartens. But we only make the numbers required for children who bring nothing. This does not take too much time.
The number required is provided by each place.
Surely this could be done elsewhere without having to upgrade kitchens.
The Government rushed this idea without properly looking into it first.
Tackling voter apathy
Deputy mayor Dave Donaldson (News, October 15) blames voter apathy and the dysfunctional postal system but neither factor justifies his call for four-year terms or changing to an online system.
The technical limitations of online voting in a Trump-era are as legion as postal voting and highlight the comparative reliability and security of manual voting (with identification on a polling day with scrutineers).
The strong rise in hand delivery and special votes reported by electoral officer Warwick Lampp suggests a growing preference for manual participation - voters taking matters into their own hands.
His argument that candidates should do more to promote engagement is sound, especially as expensive PR campaigns make no difference to voter turnout. If voting is learned behaviour reflecting the perceived legitimacy of political engagement, then inauthentic consultations, defaulting to secret decision making and playing favourites with stakeholder groups must be recognised as part of the causal story of disengagement.
This suggests that - contrary to Chamber of Commerce chief executive Bryce Heard's view that apathy is caused by the prolonged postal voting process - the level of voluntary turnout should be regarded as a performance indicator of local government.
Requiring councils to build the capacity of mana whenua to participate in local government decision making should be extended to the whole community.
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