It is my understanding that the ratepayers own the Three Waters assets.
The mayor and councillors are elected to manage those assets only; they do not have the mandate to sell or dispose of those assets to a third party without the ratepayers' consent.
The consent, in my opinion, can only be given by way of referendum.
There have been claims on the drinking water by iwi and transferring ownership to a central body may enable that to take place.
Nanaia Mahuta, the Minister of Local Government, needs to be told that she does not have the power to tell the ratepayers what they will do and not do with their assets. It is not our problem in Whanganui if, for example, Wellington's council does not maintain their assets. We have excellent assets that are being well maintained.
The Whanganui District Council needs to resist temptation to accept bribes being offered by the Government before consulting the ratepayers.
Toughen immigration stance
Like me, many New Zealanders will be wondering how the Sri Lankan Isis follower, who stabbed six people in a supermarket in Auckland, has ever been allowed to remain in this country.
Just out of jail for previous offending and apparently under close police monitoring, he offended again. Why had he been allowed to remain when he should have packed home to his own country?
Only recently, NZ Immigration allowed another known Isis believer back into New Zealand because her children had human rights that needed to be honoured. It is high time the Government took a much tougher stance on who should be allowed to live here.
Citizenship should be a privilege and immigrants should be expelled immediately should they offend at least within 10 years.
Otherwise, we are going to see a lot more of these brutal and criminal occurrences in times ahead, with New Zealand seen as a 'soft option' to operate.
Funding public debt
Columnist Thomas Coughlan makes some intriguing comments in his piece "Bagrie's prowess highlights Nat's issues" (Opinion, September 3). Mention of Cameron Bagrie's star role at the recent National Party conference invites speculation as to why National's Shadow Treasurer Andrew Bayly appeared to keep his own agenda quiet.
Soon after this year's Budget Bayly told the NZ Herald (May 20) that his aim is to rapidly put in place the changes to further support our capital markets as well as encouraging "wealthy entrepreneurs to invest in New Zealand".
Snap! This is identical to Labour's policy - as specified back in 2008 by then Minister of Commerce Lianne Dalziel. Her media statement of July 21 announced the establishment of a taskforce, led by merchant banker Rob Cameron, charged with exploring ways to "deepen the capital markets". Forward to 2021 and we heard Prime Minister Ardern welcome the prospect of "over 200 wealthy investors" coming to our shores.
But what is particularly fascinating to us Socreds and MMT (Modern Monetary Theory) academics (like Australian Professors Steve Keene and Bill Mitchell) is how the Wall St credit agencies are now tolerating more deficit spending - in contrast with earlier policies of austerity.
Of course, it is expected that our mokopuna will be faced with funding the public debt. Meanwhile, Coughlan asks if National will "go the way of the [UK] Tories and Australian Liberals and become a party of Tory nation builders, debt be damned". But would they allow our Reserve Bank to employ its newly discovered "printing" powers to equally smugly cancel those debts? Would they?
HEATHER MARION SMITH