Bold, positive and fearless leadership isn't normally associated with local government.
Many councils, in my view, suffer from leaders more focused on maintaining power over doing what is right for the future of their cities or districts, at great cost to future generations.
Fortunately, in Rotorua, we have the great privilege of being a smart city which for three straight elections has elected a mayor who has been bold and acted with vision to do what's right.
When local rednecks said no to honouring the founding document of our country, she showed leadership and did the right thing by partnering with Te Arawa for the betterment of all. When those lacking vision opposed investing in our city through partnership with central government, she saw the benefit to locals and visitors alike and forged ahead with the lakefront development along with a myriad of other projects across the city.
That's not to say we're now a utopia. As with the rest of New Zealand, the housing market is broken, and new land is desperately needed for housing over the next decade to meet supply.
This will require an equally bold leader who is unafraid of a loud minority to do what is right for all.
With a Rolodex of contacts from his time as an MP and a strong local background to match early contender, Fletcher Tabuteau shows great promise on picking up the mantle. I look forward to seeing his vision for Rotorua, and hope other contenders bring ideas instead of negativity to the debate.
Troublemakers shouldn't deprive the good students
I read again that troublemakers in our schools should not be excluded from school (Opinion, July 29)
Again, the rights of those who can't behave are taking the rights off the ones who do.
There are only so many teacher minutes per day per student and why should troublemakers deprive other students of them?
Teachers should not be expected to control them either and it equally unfair on them to go to work under sufferance to deal with it.
You always remove the rotten fruit from the bowl.
We need to get tougher on those who know they are doing wrong, and who know they can get away with it, further proving sugar-coating doesn't work.
Can see the benefits
Merepeka Raukawa-Tait's column (Opinion, July 28) is right on.
Having personally stayed overnight on a marae and also attending a beautiful wedding ceremony at Parawai Marae, I can see the benefits of what Raukawa-Tait is trying to achieve.
So much love and welcoming was evident on my two visits. Raukawa-Tait has my support.
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