Hibiscus Matters Letters - June 2016

By: Blogger

Jackie Cox receives the meat pack from Quality Meats’ Jason McIntyre.
Congratulations to Jackie Cox, who was the recipient of a Quality Meats meat pack valued at $75. She was nominated by Simon and Donna Masters (on behalf of the residents of Veronica Close, Red Beach), who wrote:
“I would like to nominate the wonderful Jackie Cox of Veronica Close, Red Beach.
We have known Jackie for two years since we moved into our home in Veronica Close. In a world where nobody talks anymore and neighbours don’t know each other, this lady is the epitome of all things good about a neighbour, despite going through major health problems.
Jackie arranged a ‘welcome to the Close’ get together when we arrived and since then each of the neighbours in the Close holds either a barbecue, lunch, evening soiree or get together on a regular basis. We know each other, we look after each other and Jackie remains at the centre of everything.
Despite suffering from cancer, she remains agile and mobile, walks neighbours dogs, cleans up rubbish, and ensures the Close remains a safe place. Recent subdivision work has added stress to her life, occurring right on her boundary. The neighbours keep an eye on her, take her out and are always there when required.
Jackie continues to put other people first and demonstrates an awesome outlook on life, remaining positive and continuing to fight her cancer.
I can think of no more deserving lady to propose for the meat pack and ‘best neighbour’ award.
Know someone who deserves thanks for their community spirit? Tell us and they could receive a Quality Meats meat pack. Email nominations to online@localmatters.co.nz or message us on Facebook. Include details of what the nominee does and Quality Meats owner Jason McIntyre will select the recipient. No correspondence will be entered into and all entrants consent to their photo being used in Hibiscus Matters. Entries close July 8.
Well done AT
David Anderson, Matakatia. Published June 15, 2016

Auckland Transport has been doing some proper thinking, coming up with the lane trial for Whangaparaoa Road (HM June 1). I am all for a solution that saves taxpayers money, saves building new roads and solves a congestion problem. Let’s hope the trial is successful and the change is permanent. Bring it on!
Editor’s note: Auckland Transport does see the dynamic lanes as a safe and cost effective alternative to widening Whangaparaoa Road. A spokesperson has confirmed that if the trial is successful, dynamic lane controls will be kept on Whangaparaoa Road as a permanent feature, potentially making a traditional road widening exercise unnecessary.
Congestion suggestion
Andy Lewis, Orewa. Published June 15, 2016

This might not be a silly idea! Make the main roads in and out of Whangaparaoa Rd and Red Beach Road into one-way roads at busy times of the day. They could do a trial period between long weekends. This is just a suggestion to see if it could work.
Pressure for sirens
Ron Cooper, Orewa. Published June 15, 2016

Greg Sayers made some very interesting observations about Orewa’s lack of a tsunami warning siren (HM June 1, Viewpoint). Such a system was recommended many years ago by Rodney District Council’s civil defence manager and ignored. I recently asked Auckland Council’s civil defence department how we are to be informed should there be a tsunami alert. The response was that there will be warnings on TV, radio and by means of a smart phone app, or we could be alerted by a neighbour who has received an alert or if the ground shakes for over a minute so much that it would be hard to remain standing.

If a tsunami had originated by a seismic event in the Kermadec Trench or farther afield, I doubt if the ground in Orewa would experience much shaking before the tsunami arrived. For anyone on the beach, an electronic warning would be ineffective. I hope that Greg, through the Local Board, could put pressure on Auckland Council to install a siren in Orewa or else explain why they are not prepared to do so. After all, if the cost is a mere $15,000, it is a paltry sum compared with the rates paid by ratepayers in Orewa.
Inspirational volunteer
Mark Nelson, Assistant Fire Chief (retired), Los Angeles County Fire Department. Published June 1, 2016

Nigel, great story about you and your history (Local Folk, HM May 18). I really enjoyed reading about all your experiences helping others who were in need. You and your family are an inspiration to all that know you. I appreciated the time you gave me when I had the pleasure to visit your beautiful country. New Zealand is an amazing place with lovely people living there. Keep up the outstanding work and stay safe.
Super Gold costs
Keith Chapman, Stanmore Bay (abridged). Published June 1, 2016

One afternoon this week, on National Radio, a Super Gold Card holder explained to interviewer Jesse Mulligan that the Auckland Council is about to change entitlements for cardholders. The elderly will no longer have the rights to free travel which they have had since they were made part of the national Super Gold scheme in 2008. Henceforth, senior citizens must pay a total of $15 to replace the Super Gold Card with what is called a HOP smartcard. In its most recent SuperSeniors eNewsletter, the Ministry of Social Development said: “More broadly, the way the [public transport] concessions are funded through regional councils is changing, but Transport Minister Simon Bridges has guaranteed there will be no change to entitlements for card holders. The card is going from strength to strength and the Government is totally committed to supporting it.” If seniors have to pay $15 for what was previously free, that is blatantly changing their entitlement, quite apart from introducing considerable difficulties (which have been reported) to retain it at a cost. It’s high time someone (Grey Power, where are you?) made it clear to Minister Bridges and his Government colleagues that his broken guarantee will be remembered by many come the next general election, unless he intends to take steps immediately to restore the status of the Super Gold Card which is in the process of being removed by the Auckland Council.What else can the elderly do? Storm buses in July and stage sit-ins? Now if it were not for the inconvenience this might create for guiltless others, there would be an idea…
Colourful cough
Angela Wickham, Silverdale. Published June 1, 2016

Great paper! Disturbed to hear about green phlegm not necessarily being a sign of infection (HM May 18). I remember as a child being told to try and cough up a sample of phlegm into a handkerchief for my mother, so we could assess the colour and decide whether a doctor’s visit was needed. Lovely! And unnecessary, as it now seems. Those were the days.



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