Home' Northern Outlook : August 7th 2013 Contents 4 NORTHERN OUTLOOK, AUGUST 7, 2013
I object to the term Nana'' area.
(Outlook, July 31)
It would be great if the people of
Canterbury were able to be in the
emergency department on Friday,
Saturday, Sunday, and sometimes
The vomit, urine and faecal
soiling is appalling.
Someone else, on low pay, has to
clean that up.
The behaviour is even worse. It
is, in the main, young people.
It is alcohol-related traffic
accidents that place a huge
demand on the health dollar.
violence and crime create a huge
demand on the court system.
The incumbent government is
unlikely to legislate to turn these
scenarios around because of the
huge tax take and the power of
the booze barons.
So, if local government attempts
to bring about change, albeit
inadequately, then I am in
support of that.
It would be timely for the
council to restrict times that
alcohol is available via liquor
outlets such as supermarkets etc.
It speaks for itself when the
crime and accident rates increase
I went to the Waimakariri District
Council website and couldn't find
anything on there about the
present pick on the easy target''
(proposed local alcohol policy).
I did, however, find the Justice
Department brief (which said)
that through local alcohol policies,
communities will be able to limit
the location of licences in
particular areas or near certain
types of facilities, such as in
specific neighbourhoods, or near
schools or churches, limit the
density of licences by specifying
whether new licences or types of
licences should be issued in a
particular area, impose conditions
on groups of licences, such as a
one-way door'' condition that
would allow patrons to leave
premises, but not enter or re-enter
after a certain time, and restrict
or extend the maximum opening
hours set in the new Act
Would the council please
answer these two questions?
You have identified that only 20
per cent of problems come from
licensed premises. Why are you
targeting the minority, i.e.
What detail can you provide for
the action you're taking against
the remaining 80 per cent? From
what I've read, there is no
mandate to change for the sake
There is a possible connection
between the upcoming Marriage
Amendment Bill and the earth
tremors. On the day of the first
reading of the bill, there was a
(magnitude) 5 earthquake near
Dannevirke, followed by the
eruptions of Tongariro, White
Island and the Kermadecs over
the next week or so.
In the book of Leviticus, in the
bible, chapter 18 lists sexual sins,
and in verses 24 to 28, it says the
earth will vomit the people off it if
we partake of these things. A
shaky August 19?
Although I have no detailed
knowledge of the Australian
Personal Income Tax Sharing Act
referred to by Michael Gousmett
(Outlook, August 3), I suspect
that he is not comparing apples
The clue is in the title Personal
Income'', inferring it was a scheme
based on each individual's
Our suggested alternative is
based on all taxable income, both
personal and corporate, because
any analysis of the rating system
will clearly show that the burden
of funding local government falls
most heavily and unfairly on the
average homeowner, while
businesses that benefit both
directly and indirectly from what
countrywide rates provide,
shoulder a much lighter share.
In any case, the negativity of
his comparison is nullified by his
statement that Today the
Federal State funds local
government by way of financial
assistance grants on a per capita
From past correspondence, it
appears that Dr Gousmett
opposes or is critical of our
suggested alternative, but his
research into the history of
taxation for his PhD would
have shown a worldwide
multiplicity of ways local
governments are funded.
Historically, our own rating
system has been condemned as
unfair, unsustainable and in need
of replacement, by numerous
select committees, also by Dr Nick
Smith when he held the portfolio --
so surely it is time something
By CATE BROUGHTON
RENOVATIONS OF the Cheviot
service centre, to make room for
the new community library, got
under way this week.
The new facility, due to be com-
pleted by the end of September,
will give the community its own
dedicated library space, said
Hurunui District Council libraries
manager Justine Lester.
The council's community library
has shared a space with the
Cheviot School library for the last
The school has been generous
in sharing their space with us, but
this is an opportunity for us to
have something to appeal to a
wider range of people.''
Feedback from the community
included comments from some
library users that they did not feel
comfortable in a school setting,
Ms Lester said.
It's a place for all community
groups and it will have different
spaces for different library users,''
Ms Lester said.
The library collection would be
a similar size to the current one.
It will be open longer hours and
include free wi-fi and internet.
Data not on the level, surveyor says
GETTING IT RIGHT: Tony Somers outside his
THOUSANDS OF Canterbury
homes may have been incorrectly
assessed by Earthquake
Commission staff, according to an
There are potentially thou-
sands, if not tens of thousands, of
houses in Canterbury that have
been incorrectly assessed,'' Adrian
His concerns centre on the qual-
ity of floor level data, which he
says provides important in-
formation for an engineering
assessment of damaged homes.
Mr Cowie, a registered
surveyor, says he has evidence
that in many cases, floor levels
have not been taken at all, and
where they have been taken, the
data is not trustworthy because
the methods that have been used
I have around 15 houses at
present where either no levels or
totally inadequate levels were
taken. In all of these cases, EQC's
assessment was no structural
damage. However, they all have
suffered some earthquake-related
There are many people who
know that the EQC's assessment
is not right, but they don't have
the funds to get a second opinion.''
He is calling for an independent
inquiry into EQC's practices, and
has laid a complaint with the
Commerce Commission under the
Fair Trading Act.
In a statement to the Northern
Outlook, EQC Canterbury home
repair manager Reid Stiven said
that EQC complies with all the
Ministry of Building and
Innovation and Employment's
building and housing guidelines,
and that all its completed work
meets code compliance.
He said uneven floor levels
could not necessarily be attributed
to the earthquakes.
Measuring floor levels alone
tells you nothing about whether
any unevenness present is due to
Mr Cowie said that in one
instance, he discovered the floor
levels of a client's home were 82
millimetres out -- far exceeding
the Department of Building and
Housing (DBH) guidelines, which
allow for a 50mm variation in
The client, Tony Somers, was
uncomfortable with the assess-
ment and repair strategy given by
EQC staff in September 2011.
They had not taken any floor
levels and had suggested plaster
and paint work was all that
would be required to address the
After Mr Cowie surveyed the
property and found the damage to
be much more significant than
suggested by EQC, Mr Somers
called off the repairs. He says
he is still waiting for a revised
If Mr Cowie hadn't done his
report, we would have
gone ahead, and then
when we went to sell, a
required for the new
owners to get insur-
ance would have shown
the real situation.''
The New Zealand
Institute of Surveyors
(NZIS) sought an
urgent meeting with
EQC staff on Thursday
to discuss concerns
raised by Mr Cowie.
NZIS vice president
Jeff Needham said the
institute suggested an
independent review of
used by EQC staff
would be beneficial.
We've talked about
what we believe the
institute could do or what regis-
tered professional surveyors can
do to assist in EQC process.''
The two organisations say that
they have agreed to continue
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