It's not a case of asking: When did you last use a reserve? We keep getting told Rotorua is growing fast, so why sell reserves for housing when the population here is growing? Residents fighting to preserve green spaces are not just doing it for themselves or ratepayers, they are fighting for those who are too young to speak for themselves. People who will need our reserves for more years than we will, to play, relax and have fun. Once they are sold and filled with housing, where will the council find spaces for reserves when they are needed even more? Obviously not in areas where they will be needed. There will be no green spaces left. Keep the reserves - not just for this generation but for the future generations of Rotorua.
It is difficult not to notice the new addition to the Redwoods, and very nice it is too. However, this is not the time for the council to be spending money on items that will not immediately improve the quality of life for the city's residents, and it will not do that much to attract more visitors. Yes, we need tourists, however tourists do not add anything to the welfare of the residents, they merely put money in the pockets of the council and the tourist attraction owners. That is why we need a tax on tourism, just a small percentage - eight or 10 per cent would greatly alleviate the strain on rates and the misery thus caused to the ratepayers.
Decision on abortion in US has no bearing on New Zealand
Even in New Zealand, the reaction to the American court decision on abortion rights has been highly emotive, with little regard for the facts. In essence, the Supreme Court said abortion was not mentioned in the US constitution and it was not proper for that court to try and make the law. It said US laws should only be made by the elected representatives of the people and the role of their court is to uphold the law unless there is something in the US constitution that overrides it. Abortion law in New Zealand has been made by Members of Parliament who were elected by the people. Consequently, the decision made by a US court has no bearing on the rights of people within New Zealand.
D A McPherson