Nelson Residents Association

YOUR CIVIC GUARDIAN

Submission by Pam Frahm

Submission for the Nelson Draft Annual Plan 2014/15 – April 2014

 

Pam Frahm

Monaco, Nelson 7011

5476322

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  • No, I do not wish to speak. I will be there, taking notes, but I will probably never speak again, after being humiliated by a councillor two years ago.
  • At my age, daytime hearings would be better.

WHO’S TALKING TO YOU?

  • I am female.
  • Almost 70 years old.
  • I’m Dyslexic, so writing this is not easy.
  • We’ve been living in Monaco, in the same house, for over 40 years.
  • We bought our house for $32,000 and currently pay $4,633 annually in rates (thankfully down from $5,007).
  • I was a Permanent Resident Immigrant, now a New Zealand Citizen.
  • I’ve taught at Nayland College, held down many jobs, started my own business and am now retired.
  • I’m pro-active and fill in your submissions, attend the odd Council meeting and write letters to the editor. I’m a member of the Nelson Residents Association.
  • I’m a serious recycler, and stop at the Recycle Centre once a week to buy stuff back.
  • I have not borrowed a library book for many years but I cherish my Library Card, and have used their toilets in both Nelson and Richmond.
  • I have only been to one rugby game in my whole life (never been to cricket), but have watched my grandchildren play netball at Saxton’s Field.
  • I am rarely interested in live theatre shows – but I do take advantage of the senior discount rate for the movies.
  • I have visited the i-Site for Nelson brochures to send to visiting friends (and plan my local holidays away from Nelson)… and use their toilet.
  • I go to town 1-2 times a week and use my City Council Senior Citizens parking card, and have a Disabled Parking Permit. I also shop in Richmond just as much.
  • I didn’t go to Opera in the Park this year, but I’d be happy to do it again, even without imported “Top” talent. (it was great when it only cost $5 and we brought our own lawn chairs)
  • I have gone to the Provincial Museum in Town – but still think it’s a funny place to put it. I love Founder’s Park, and would never miss the Book Fair – where I was a core volunteer for over 12 years.
  • I haven’t been to Natureland yet this year – but thank God we didn’t lose it.
  • I took part at the Summer Sunday Craft Markets at Broadgreen, and think it’s a lovely local park and garden.
  • My Photo Club used Isel for an all day project… another beautiful park.
  • We’ve been to Rabbit Island for 2 different club picnics in the last year.
  • I took a bus trip with the Waimea Inlet Forum to see the cycle trail and the work they’ve done planting along the estuary.

 

I love Nelson and wouldn’t want to be anyplace else.

 


 

THIS PAGE IS TO BE READ BY NEW COUNCILLORS AND

THOSE WHO SKIPPED IT IN THE PAST

 

 

I will be writing in the 1st person, so when I say “you” I am speaking to the Nelson City Councillors. And, when I CAPITALISE a word it is meant to be shouted with emphasis. If it’s underlined and bold, I’m probably mad.

I truly feel that the N.C.C. has already made up its mind BEHIND CLOSED DOORS as to what it plans to do for the city. I will fill in this submission, as I have done many times before, but it seems that from your exalted position you think you can treat us like children because you know what is best for us.

Your mandate should ONLY be to run the city’s infrastructure: clean water, controlled garbage, safe city streets, etc. Your job is NOT to spend OUR money to entertain us – unspoiled beaches and tidy parks should be where your responsibility begins and ends when it comes to outdoor activities and amusement.

YOU might like to ride a bike to work and think it is a good, healthy idea for the rest of us, but that does not mean you should ignore the parking issue and punish people who like cars.

Life has many more options than it did 20 years ago. Leave us alone to get on with our own interests. Many of the Council sponsored events are lovely (Masked Parade, Santa Parade, etc), but could just as easily be sponsored by private enterprise. Each event takes thousands of taxpayer dollars, hundreds of staff hours, but might only last for 120 minutes! You shouldn’t have to pay people to amuse us, and if you can’t get volunteers to help it’s because we’re too busy doing things ourselves or we’re uninterested.

Next - Stop trying to draw in the tourists, they love Nelson and come regardless of what you do. You were voted in to care and protect US – not Wellingtonians, etc. I realize that the Business sector is part of “us” – but you should not be spending taxpayer money to prop up restaurants, shops and motels/hotels. If a restaurant feels it has to rely on visitors to stay afloat, it started with a bad business model!  If a motel needs more beds filled to make a profit… we had enough in the first place.

 

end

 


 

  1. TRANSPORT - CABLE BAY: It’s taking too long. Finish the job!
  2. TRANSPORT – SHARED PATHWAYS: Get on with it. The only bad thing is that, keeping bikes off the road does not teach drivers how to look for bikes and how to navigate safely around them. As stated in the Live Nelson, “drivers dissociate themselves from cyclists and don’t identify with them as a group.”
    1. I hate to see bike riders on the Bishopdale Hill – it scares me to death! Rocks Road isn’t much better, but the cars are not going 70km.
    2. Why does Bishopdale have to be 70km anyway, it’s probably only 2k of road. No one has to be in that much of a hurry. That area doesn’t need to be treated as a highway, it’s residential.
    3. The same with Atawhai, the residents wanted the speed lowered, listen to them, not the Transport Dept.
    4. 3.TRANSPORT – NEW LIGHTS ON WAIMEA: It’s OK, make it a Free Left Turn onto Motueka St.
    5. 4.TRANSPORT/ROADING: “Open Road” signage on the Wangamoas is ridiculous when there are dozens of signs posted to slow down to 35k at every curve. Until they straighten out the road on our side of the saddle, lower the speed limit.
    6. 5.TRANSPORT/ROADING - THE BACK BEACH ROAD OF MONACO: This is personal!!! The back beach IS a legal road, it’s just not paved.
    7. Feb_news_monaco.jpg2012_Monaco_4.jpg
  1. This is not a new issue. We have sent many photos to the newspaper of people suck in the quagmire of soft sand midway between the two sealed portions of Point Road.
  2. Recently, two signs were installed stating “Caution: subject to tidal conditions”. But this does NOT enlighten anyone to the biggest danger that exist - WHEN THE TIDE IS OUT.
  3. It isn’t only hooning teenagers making “donuts” on dark weekends who get stuck, but tourists who have also followed the tyre marks leading straight into this trap.
  4. Just last weekend I called the police at 4:45am – I was too afraid to go out in the dark. It was two boys who had STOLEN a car (the second such incident). The police said “the Council won’t do anything about it.” which was confirmed by a council staff member (Roy Niles) who called us and said “Two signs have been erected and nothing further will be done.”
  5. For years it has been up to the local residents to take action and either personally pull people out of the mud, or arrange for the AA to come to the rescue.
  6. It’s a City Council responsibility to warn people of the danger that exist on ANY road and it should not be left solely up to local residents to take or initiate action on behalf of the unfortunate ones who, unaware and unsuspecting drive right into this trap. If WE had made a sign it would have had stronger wording and been more specific about what the danger is.
  7. Two of the most recent incidents happened within the past couple of months on an incoming tide. One panic stricken couple from Auckland had two young children on board, one of which was in a wheel chair. It was raining and the tide was threatening to envelop their van. I’ve lived here for 40 years and this has been an ongoing event. Get onto it, Councillors!!!
  8. PS. Opps, there was another one today – April 25th.

 

  1. PUBLIC AMENITIES - TOILETS: I applaud any new toilets or toilet upgrades. In other countries every business has to have a toilet available for customers… not just food outlets. If that’s not the law, then you need to have enough toilets handy that no one should have to drive to find one.
  2. PUBLIC AMENITIES – THE BUS: The Bus is good, keep it going. I used one in my youth. Now I’m OLD and I like to drive because I want more control over my movements. My shopping & visiting are unpredictable and a schedule would be difficult – and cause much stress. I live in Monaco and I would have to drive 2 miles to a bus stop anyway.
    1. But I DO think the bus is a Regional activity and should be shared with the TDC – along with other roading issues that should be considered joint rather than both Nelson and Richmond operating their own “regional transport committees”.
    2. Is there a discounted pass for daily workers and school kids who ride the same route on a daily basis?
    3. The Ap was a good idea. Maybe The Bus needs a Facebook page showing happy people riding the bus. Get the teens to submit photos of their friends. You could give-away a Free Ride every week for the best photo.

 

  1. WATER SUPPLY - Wastewater, Storm Water, Flood Protection: I don’t need to read about membrane assembly, pipelines, culverts, catchments, stream upgrades, and water bylaws. Just make it work, that’s what the money is for.
    1. I don’t EVER want to hear a person cry in front of you again, like that poor woman last year, because of storm water flowing through her yard. It was heartbreaking to listen to her beg you for help when staff had ignored her pleas for assistance.
    2. Your statement, “improving storm water and flood protection is a focus of this year’s plan,” (page 7) SHOULD NOT BE “A” FOCUS, IT SHOULD BE “THE” FOCUS!

 

  1. AIR QUALITY - WOODBURNERS: I will not be totally happy if you lower the woodburner specs, since I already spent $4199 plus GST replacing a very efficient, but (according to you) out-of-date, woodburner. Living on the Monaco peninsula, with its constant breeze, I requested the Council test my chimney emissions (which I offered to pay for) so they could prove to me that I was a polluter, but they wouldn’t do it.
    1. But regardless, do something and get it over with. People should not have to suffer another winter because of a ridiculous, inflexible rule.
    2. People should not have to put on extra clothes inside their homes because they can not afford to turn on the electricity, or are not allowed to light a fire.

 

10. ARTS AND HERITAGE – CREMATORIUM: Fix it, you shouldn’t have to ask.

11. ARTS AND HERITAGE ROCKS ROAD: Stop the emotional angst about retaining the chain and stanchion fence. It isn’t all the same anyway. Perhaps the whole waterfront doesn’t need it, and the entire fence doesn’t have to be saved. Make it all match or save SOME of it and feature it in a special place. (But don’t build a wall, make it something we can see through because we like the view)

 

12. PARKS AND RECREATION – STATEMENT OF PROPOSAL: “to provide spaces for organised sport, informal recreation and areas for people to interact.”

  1. Don’t forget there is value in just maintaining open spaces and relief from residential houses and buildings. A park is beneficial even if you never set foot in it. (And you don’t need to waffle on in the Plan that it’s creating oxygen or reducing our carbon footprint, good God, your Spin Merchant is working over time!)
    1. Your Assets Department wanted to sell the small park at the end of Monaco because they “never saw anyone in it.” That’s not the point, it was a gift to the city from a local resident, and it’s just nice to have. And my kids DID use it when they were smaller. (The Monaco Residents Association actually offered to do the maintanence).

 

13. PARKS AND RECREATION – MODELLERS POND: What’s this with 3 pumps pushing storm water into the pond and then making the public think the modellers are begging money to clean up their facility? YOU created the problem in the first place. Don’t make the public think “a few guys and their boats” are being selfish – admit the pond is a big part of the city-wide storm water system and needs to be rectified.

  1. The Pond is much like the above (No 12)… you don’t have to float a boat to enjoy it. Water is good; and the pond, besides providing a storm water reservoir, is a calming place to be. CLEAN IT UP!

14. PARKS AND RECREATION – MAITAI RIVER: We should NEVER have to think twice about swimming in any of our lakes or rivers. Your mandate: “Check it and Correct it”.

15. PARKS AND RECREATION – BROOK SANCTUARY: I’m not convinced the 14km fence is a good idea, but they seem to have raised their own money to build it (with $1 million from the ratepayers). So be it.

  1. But, other sanctuary enterprises have been very costly to maintain, with far smaller areas to preserve, and far flatter terrain to enclose. And trapping has been very successful at places like Lake Rotoiti and Abel Tasman Park.
    1. Zealandia’s fence in Wellington is only 7km and cost only $4 million to set up. Yet they estimate they will need 5.5-7% of capital costs to cover maintenance per year. This will require 13,000 families of 4 to visit every year to cover running costs. (they have recently lowered the entry fee to $19 adult/$9 child to try to increase their low numbers.) Can we sustain that?
    2. Comment on Zealandia: “People can see the same birdlife; Tui, Bellbird, Kaka, Silvereye, Fantail, Robins, etc. in their own backyards throughout Wellington/Hutt and surrounds.”
    3. I am concerned the ridge corridor/walkway carved for the fence could become an eyesore in itself.
    4. I am VERY concerned that the digging and installation of the fence could undermine the Historic Dun Mountain Track, particularly at the section of trail between “Four Corners and the Third House”.
      1. Here the fence is just 50 metres below the track and the steep out-slope is a 50 degree gradient.
      2. Please don’t ignore this, the land is ours and city money will have to repair any damage to his heritage track.
      3. Watch out for these “Trusts”, they are brought about by well intentioned citizens, but their bright ideas tend become city assets and another ratepayer burden.

16. PARKS AND RECREATION – FOUNDERS PARK: It sounds like a good idea to have the Ecofest at Founders.

  1. The one good thing about the closure of Trafalgar Centre is that organizations have to look around at other venues and will realize we have quite a few good alternatives for many events.

17. PARKS AND RECREATION – STOKE: Stoke is ticking along, but I’m hoping you can keep your promise and spend some money on the Greenmeadows facility. Stoke and Tahuna seem to be overlooked in favour of the CBD, or leaping to Saxton Field.

18. PARKS AND RECREATION – SAXTON OVAL: How could major repairs be needed to the Oval when the rainfall was low, and the facility is so new? “Replacing the drainage system, repairing the discharge pipes and re-installing the turf” sounds like a lot of repair work. Was it not built adequately in the first place? Tell us.

19. PARKS AND RECREATION – THE BROOK MOTOR CAMP: This is such a mess I don’t know what to say. We are missing too much information. WHY did the Council lose money when it took over the management? What could it possibly have done differently? How can you think of selling it when it was a gift to the city? There are people who think it’s some conspiracy with the Sanctuary.

  1. Offer it back to the Tahuna Motorcamp on a long term lease and then forget about it!

 

20. EVENTS VENUESTRAFALGAR CENTRE: There isn’t a building in the whole country that shouldn’t have a sign “Enter at your own risk”. Trafalgar Centre is no more dangerous now than it was a year ago. And you want to close it without so much as a crack showing!

  1. Relocating events to Saxton Stadium is a retrograde step. Saxton facilities are for participants, not spectators… evident by the number of times I wanted to sit while standing to watch the kids play netball.
  2. In 1971 you called it “The Heart of the City”, and now you want to rip our heart out???
  3. Note: when you use TC upgrade money (I believe $600k) to relocate events to Saxton – remember where you got it, AND PUT IT BACK. (You’re going to need that money when you come to your senses and reopen it!)
  4. Also, it was YOU who designed Saxton not to compete with Trafalgar Centre, so TC would remain the “Jewel in the Crown”.
  5. Thanks to Mayor Reese for making those Tonkin & Taylor reports and documentation (etc.) available on your website – as she promised. I hope people will read them and put pressure on you to reopen.
  6. If Alec Louverdis announced emphatically at the Council meeting last month that the piles “were only 3m deep” why was there not a formal apology, or correction to the minutes, or some sort of announcement/retraction in the newspaper saying they were actually 11m deep? And how did Alec make this mistake? No joking; this is important!! Was that a stated fact written someplace, or can’t he read the plans?
    1. Anyone can make a mistake. I am not suggesting heads need to roll. But for Pete’s sake, admit this was a giant oversight. And apologise publicly to Kerry Neal who has been bringing this to your attention for months!
    2. Liquefaction – no one dies because of liquefaction, and you have 5 minutes to vacate before it reaches the surface.
    3. You have other buildings you will have to deal with, and if you believe, “if you ask five engineers to do assessments those engineers are going to come up with five different answers” (Nelson Mail 23 April), it sounds like you need a panel to assess information from all quarters… not just the experts.

21. EVENTS VENUES - SCHOOL OF MUSIC: Fix it.

  1. And please explain why the planned transfer of the land and building to the Council has not occurred? What “legal issues” have caused the delays? (page 43)

22. EVENTS VENUES – THEATRE ROYAL: “…continues to experience financial difficulties despite high community use and commercial bookings”. THIS IS A SCANDAL. You’ve got so much money in it, now you have to fix it. But, be a man and announce that the entire Board of Directors, especially ex-Mayor Kerry Marshall and Councillor Pete Rainey, should be in jail for not getting the numbers right and blackmailing the Council into taking it on.

  1. “The initial budgets produced by the Trust have proven to be unrealistic…” (Frankly, I think they knew all along they were going to renege on the loan repayment and would have to eventually give it away. They just wanted a nicer facility and this was an easy way to get it.)
  2. Is this an example of, “it’s easier to gain forgiveness than permission”?

 

23. ECONOMIC – CITY CENTRE WiFi: Good idea. I know people who have to book time at library computers because of overuse by tourists. It will be good if visitors can check their email and Skype their friends elsewhere and leave the library computers for locals who don’t have a machine, or Ultra Fast Broadband at home.

  1. But, I would not expect visitors to be accessing much information on shopping and attractions in the city while here… they probably did that at their last location.
    1. I believe it was someone from the Hotel Association who said: the average overseas tourist is in the Nelson District for 4 days and 2 ½ are spent in Abel Tasman Park. That only leaves 1 ½ days for shopping, a quick latte, and ALL our local attractions.

24. ECONOMIC – LOAN REPAYMENT: The rain event last April cost my family $7,000 beyond our insurance coverage. And we know it put a strain on the city coffers.      

  1. THIS STATEMENT (on page 7) IS SCARY. “we propose to set aside an additional $500,000 in the Annual Plan 2014-15” … “we will eventually start to accumulate funds for future events by year 8”. That’s not enough!
  2. Just this Easter weekend’s storm brought down trees and ripped off roofs in my neighbourhood. Nelmac and others have been working overtime… again.
  3. Our population has grown, so more people are affected with each event, and the repairs get costlier… make sure you have enough in the Disaster Recovery Fund and we won’t have to worry about outstanding loans for the “want to haves”.
  4. You should not STILL be doing on-going repairs from the flood of 2011. There should have been enough money to get things back to normal quickly.

25. ECONOMICS – CRICKET WORLD CUP: Good luck, I hope you make as much profit as you did with the Rugby… (that was a joke!)

26. ECONOMICS EVENTS STRATEGY: “provide funding to stimulate new spending by bringing visitors to Nelson for district events.” (page 42).

  1. Does this actually mean “spending money to advertise in distant newspapers”? Having lost the WOW fashion show to Wellington, I don’t really think anyone is going to come from the North Island to see our Masked Parade or Buskers Festival.
    1. Most of the city events are in the summer, when the place is already filled with Cantabrians.
    2. I’ll be interested to know what this means.

27. ECONOMICS SUIPs: I don’t understand this, but I know of commercial property owners who speak of the unfairness and hardship this has caused.

  1. I am intrigued with comments “this cannot be easily done” (page 8). It signals you need to ALL (Council and Staff) be locked in a room with a facilitator until there is a solution.      
  2. 28. MISC - Upper Bridge St. – Beyond the Hospice Shop, the only good thing about Upper Bridge St is that the police know where to patrol on Friday night. Clean it up.

29. MISC – FLOWER BASKETS: Wonderful!!

30. MISC MELROSE HOUSE: I’ve had High Tea at Melrose and it was lovely. It’s wonderful to see the facility being used on a daily basis.

31. MISC – FLEA MARKET: Councillors at the Flea Market – great idea.

32. MISC CHURCH STREET: It’s interesting that you have removed the project to upgrade this area “for a better pedestrian connection from the Montgomery Car Park and the Performing Arts Centre next to the Rutherford Hotel” when the Performing Arts Centre was never approved.

33. MISC HUNTER’S FURNITURE ROOF: Please don’t replace the roof for $200,000 and then sell the building to Farmers.

34. MISC CATS: Don’t listen to Gareth Morgan when he talks about a ban on domestic cats.

  1. It’s a scientific fact that pets teach children to love, lower stress, and help old folks live longer.
  2. I wouldn’t mind a night-time curfew. I have had a neighbour’s cat jump in open windows and start fights with my cat, on my bed!
  3. Microchipping ALL domestic animals is a good idea.

35. MISC CORPORATE: “The running of the Council organisation includes elections, finances and administration, strategic documents and Councillor support” (page 57)…. And junkets to Sister Cities?

  1. Remember that trips and gifts you take are paid for by the Nelson ratepayer… and the return trips and gifts are paid for by THEIR ratepayers. (YOU HAVE NO MONEY, IT’S OURS)

36. MISC DEFERRED ROADING PROJECTS: I am all for deferring roading projects until you get the right hand talking to the left.

  1. We’re getting a beautiful new road in Main Rd Stoke, please don’t dig it up in 6 months because you forgot something. Songer Street is now a mess of patchwork from road projects that seem to be after-thoughts.

37. MISC – PARKING

  1. a.It may look like the parking requirements have not changed for the past 8 years, but for the last 3-4 years I have not had the disposable income I used to. Superannuation is not enough to live on and my investments took a serious hit so, my trips to town are less frequent, and more about errands than shopping.
  2. Outdoor dining may be “trendy” and look cute, and even if the Council can make up the revenue by renting the spaces to the businesses, it’s unfair to take parking places without providing alternatives for cars.
    1. How many stores might like to have outdoor space to show off more items? Why do you think only restaurants “contribute to an attractive and vibrant city”? (Live Nelson April 19th)
    2. PARKING WARDENS: Calm them down. They ultimately work for the city and need to act as Ambassadors and not piss people off.
    3. FREE PARKING DAYS: Stop the “either/or” mentality. Why not have Tuesday free for parking and Wednesday free for the bus. Ultimately the business people just want more people in town.
      1. Having a free bus will NOT make me leave my car at home when I hope to fill my boot with heavy bags!
      2. LONG STAY PARKING: It is a mystery where the shop employees in the CBD and Stoke Strawbridge Sq. park their cars. I can’t imagine going outside every 3 hours to move my car – or having to walk a few blocks out of town to metre-less parking places.
        1. They deserve to have convenient parking, they are already adding to the vitality of the CBD.
        2. You making money off their employment, takes away from their take-home salary. They should have a parking permit like Senior Citizens.

 

Remember – you 13 people are basically the only face of the Council, most residents do not understand the demands of the Council Staff, the influential pressure from business/sports entrepreneurs, or the un-seen power of the CEO. YOU will get the blame for EVERYTHING.

 

Thanks for listening.

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