There have been some interesting articles and letters in the paper recently about stray cats in our city. As you read this article, please do not think I am a cat hater, because I am not. I think cats make great pets for many people.
However, what really annoys me about cats is that they roam the neighbourhood at will. I do not own a cat, because I love the bird life and encourage birds to come on to my property. Unfortunately, so do the neighbour's cats.
These cats hunt the birds, poo in my garden and on my lawn. They also come in at night and roam all over my outdoor chairs. I cannot leave the nice, comfortable squabs on the chairs, as the cats leave hair, mud and other debris on them.
If this problem was a dog, I could get the dog ranger to take the dog away. But what do you do about stray cats? If I shoot them with a slug gun I can get in trouble, even though the cats are trespassing on my private property.
I thoroughly agree with Gareth Morgan about this problem. If people choose to own a cat they must retain it on their own property. Yes, it can be done with proper fencing, and cats can be trained to be on a leash.
In the meantime, I have purchased off Trade Me a gadget called a "Dog Dazer". This is a little electronic device made for repelling dogs. I have found it works really well on cats, too. It gives a high pitch noise that they do not like. They soon realise that it is best to stay away.
I would prefer to see government legislation introduced to control cats. Perhaps I should ask Kingmaker Winston!
Would you believe yet again our mayor gives verbal praise for overseeing an average rates rise of 2 per cent, initially 1.9 per cent (and councillor Vinsen said we should be over the moon) for the 2017-18 year (Chronicle, October 8).
I rendered my displeasure (October 10) at his additional comment that ratepayers in Springvale and St John's Hill "will pay more". Well, it came to fruition; my increase is 4.7 per cent and Horizons 5.6 per cent, my rates payment to the WDC is the price of a loaf of bread short of several thousand dollars. Why am I paying 135 per cent more than the average?
So I have a question to the new mayor, to the new CEO, to the new finance manager and finally to the new councillors and the other bureaucrats in the ivory tower: Where, within the boundary of the WDC's control, is this utopian wonderland where only those ratepayers in Springvale and St John's Hill have unfettered access to the facilities thereby contained under lock and key?
My home is an average dwelling: 3 bedrooms, 1 bathroom, 1 toilet, 1 kitchen, 1 eating area, 1 lounge and garage.
In several decades residing in Wanganui, I'm sure I have never found these mythical dreamworld facilities. What I have experienced are all of the facilities available to all Wanganui residents, irrespective of where you live or whether you are a ratepayer.
And also, we read in an earlier Chronicle that we ratepayers pay approximately $800 more than those of councils north and south of Wanganui. That's as big a question.
Maybe councillor Vinsen's unqualified fiscal brainstorming comments that Wanganui can sustain a $50,000,000 debt level has been taken literally. We already pay $10,000,000 p.a. in interest; go figure that.
In the Chronicle of October 6: "Councillors going back to school". Ms Almond some time ago was going with a "Wanganui Perception" survey her department had put together, but decided to withhold the contents/launch from councillors for about six months because she thought they would not be up for it. Things don't seem to have improved.
I wonder how many dropouts there will be before the new term begins and what level of truancy will be experienced.
Maybe Ms Almond has another agenda. For whom doth the bell toll?
Horizons has just released a pamphlet with chairman Bruce Gordon commenting on land management, erosion and such.
Farmers are being asked to adhere to more and more rules to satisfy the townies' belief of how the world should operate, with no consideration of how much of a detrimental effect it has on lower-income families; dearer eggs, dearer meat, dearer dairy products, dearer electricity. Don't worry about the people; save the planet.
Farmers have to get consent to cultivate if the gradient is a certain level, permits to track, roading contractors have to build bunds to stop imagined silt run-off - probably six barrow-loads, and six barrow-loads of cash to build it.
Now we have the greenies' darlings, those awful things called pine trees, being harvested, tracks willy-nilly, mud galore washing into the waterways. No worries; that is a green project.
Pine trees pollute the soil with chemicals so nothing else grows in it. These chemicals are in the mud, bark and trash that fill our waterways. No worries; they are the greenies' darling.
Then we have the towns and cities pouring the toxic stormwater into our waterways. No worries; that's just something townies do - don't worry about it. It's you awful, wealth-creating farmers who will be feeding our grandchildren who are ruining their future.
The fish can handle the toxins, but maybe not the people who eat them.
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