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Letters to editor

A new style of governance 

Dear Sir

Three things happened in the last 

weeks or so that are beginning to 

entrench a new style of governance. 

Prior to that, back in May last year, 

an order in council changing the 

game for OSPRI and definitions 

of Tb incidence and time frames 

was quietly slipped through the 

house. It was interesting in that 

the whole deal was shaped by an 

unknown and clandestine “steer-

ing committee”. It is now law.

The next one was Nick Smith chang-

ing the rules to take discharge of 

aerial contaminants section out 

of the RMA and put it under direct 

ministerial control. This way, spread-

ing, specifically brodifacoum and 

1080, could be taken from the act 

and be by ministerial direction with 

no local government involvement.

Now, Urban Development Authori-

ties are a new concept in planning, 

short cutting the RMA and local in-

put and putting urban development 

under direct ministerial control.

It is probably not finally, because I 

suspect there may be more than I 

have found, but again, river water 

quality and monitoring, an activ-

ity of regional government and dis-

trict health officers, have just had 

had the ground rules changed by 

ministerial direction. Clean water 

can have a far higher E coli count 

now than they did a week ago.

It is interesting that in the last 

three cases, the minister in-

volved seems to be Nick Smith. 

Bill Benfield

All Dunne in

Dear Sir

Ohariu MP Peter Dunne wants to 

shift summer holidays back until 

the weather is hotter. Surely immi-

gration, NZ’s heavy debt, society’s 

ills and violence, deteriorating riv-

ers, and decimating our inshore 

fishery, selling out to foreign-

ers etc are far more important?

Dunne entered politics as a 

rookie MP in the 4th “Roger-

nomics” Labour government.

Since he has been in and out of 

National and Labour-led govern-

ments conveniently bed-hop-

ping often to those in power. At 

one stage he hopped into his 

own United Future boudoir.

Currently he holds the Internal Af-

fairs, Associate Health, and Associ-


What is now missing in more and 

more Political parties is the base core 

of what we as people have fought 

and died for and that is Democracy.

We the people have lost our voice to a 

bunch of elected self-righteous big-

ots who have now taken the law into 

their own hands and are completely 

in denial of what that word means.

We as a people have allowed a 

bunch of Civil servants to take 

away our Democratic rights by 

stealth to give them the abil-

ity to enforce their thoughts over 

our rights for their own purpose.

Until we as a people realise this 

and rebuke them they will con-

tinue as is. They must be remind-

ed that they are elected as our 

representatives and our voice.

Roger Murray

Game Council

Dear Sir

Your paper does a great job of in-

forming the fishermen and hunting 

public about what is going on. The 

news item last issue on the Game 

Animal Council was an eye opener. 

What started out as a levy on tourist 

hunters taking trophies out of the 

country has been twisted to be a 

levy on the NZ recreational hunter? 

The council reminds me of the 

Recreational Hunting Advisory 

Council of a few decades ago. It 

was duty bound to the Minister 

of Forests in those days. It had no 

voice and members from memory 

were gagged from talking outside. 

The Game Animal Council is like-

Governor General office is 


The destruction of our environment 

for corporate greed is affecting us all 

and worse it is a hazard to our health. 

We are now just a green coun-

try, the pure clean bit has gone. 

The government are involved in 

ecoterrorism as they implement 

their neoliberal ideas, now our 

water is green, our lakes and riv-

ers are turning green, green wa-

ter to go with our green country, 

and it’s all covered in cow shit.

Greed has taken over from common 

sense as the government, councils 

and corporates have turned their 

backs on the citizens of this country.

We need an organization that 

holds politicians and councils ac-

countable. Even the Governor-

General office has let the peo-

ple down by refusing to allow 

letters to reach him. Shame on them.

Maybe a letter to the 

Queen as a last recourse.

Name withheld

Lake Tutira 

Dear Sir

New Zealand prides itself on clean 

green scenery. It’s Kiwi blue water. 

The reality is so much different. 

At Lake Tutira in Hawkes Bay NZ, I 

camped again last night and saw 

at first light this morning, the state 

of the water. Discoloured with fine 

green slime and blue scum seeping 

into water. Ducks, swans and heron 

birdlife swimming and feeding in it.

This battle for the survival of our wa-

ter, soil, air and natural resources is 

upon us right now. The water does 

not lie. Its state is one of distress and 

slow death. I smelt its sickness. It re-

minded me of the smell of a pig farm.

Meanwhile pine forest logging, 

dairy farming, spraying, road 

works, bitumen are all contribut-

ing trauma and toxin into the lo-

cal water table feeding this lake.

I took a bottle of the green water in-

side a Kiwi Blue bottle. I tasted it. Not 

very nice. It would be a good taste 

test for parties that deny the severity 

of our water problems. Parties such 

as Big Agribusiness, Intensive Dairy-

ing, Pinus Radiata Forests, Mining 

and Oil fracking, nitrate fertilisers, bi-

tumen surfaces and calcium hydrox-

ide cements, 1080 poison drops.

Proof is in the drinking. I believe 

Rec Hunting Levy

Dear Sir

I was staggered to read last issue 

your report of a proposal to levy 

New Zealand recreational hunters 

to fund the Game Animal Council. 

It was a surprise to read the move 

was being pushed by the NZDA 

national president. When you tote 

up figures NZDA membership of 

the total NZ recreational hunt-

ers is a very small percentage.

It all started as I understand with a 

proposed game trophy export levy 

to be applied to international tourist 

hunters taking trophies out of NZ. 

In noted in a farming paper, com-

mercial deer hunting interests are 

grumbling. James Guild a member 

on the government’s Game Ani-

mal Council was quoted as saying 

“The levy — is a heavy tax on our 

business —for the sole benefit of 

the recreational hunting sector.”

Excuse me Mr Guild. Benefits 

for recreational hunting sector?

He must know the Department of 

Conservation to which the Game An-

imal Council is attached by statute 

has increased helicopter operations 

(WARO) and loves chucking 1080 

poison around public lands to kill 

deer. Why would recreational hunt-

ers jump to pay a levy to a council 

which is effectively an arm of DOC?

I did a quick search on google. The 

11 members of the Game Animal 

Council are:- Donald Hammond 

(chair), Thomas (Mark) Brough, Rog-

er Duxfield, Professor Geoffrey 

Kerr, Steven McFall, Alexander 

(Alec) McIver, William O’Leary, Gar-

ry Ottmann, Terence Pierson, Roy 

Sloan, Carol Watson. William (Bill) 

O’Leary is current NZDA national 

president. Recreational hunters 

seem to be in a minority on council.

I urge hunters to keep a 

close eye on the goings-on 

of the Game Animal Council.

King Country

Water Quality – Council 


Dear Sir

Water quality is and always has 

been the responsibility of Councils. 

When water quality gets to the extent 

that it has heads should roll. Clearly 

in most businesses if things fail we 

get rid of the man ultimately respon-

sible and in this case it’s the CEO.

Our Councils and council staff are 

not held accountable enough. 

They must be put on perfor-

mance based contracts and if they 

fail to comply then out they go. 

It’s pretty basic and pretty good 

method of getting compliance.

The new standards do noth-

ing for the quality of our water.

Then we have Watercare. 

What do they actually do? 

Who do they report too?

Again are they accountable?

Something catastrophic must be 

wrong with our Councils and Wa-

tercare when the water is allowed 

to deteriorate to the extent is has. 

Trawlers are to blame

Dear Sir

I find the new proposal to stop 

trawling on the West Coast a 

rather pathetic attempt to stall 

stopping trawling altogether.

Now that Sanfords and MoanaNZ 

have finally admitted that trawl-

ing is the primary reason for dol-

phin deaths why is the govern-

ment not fully protecting this area 

and stopping trawling - NOW?

The fact they are trying to keep 

this quiet like every other bloody 

inquiry further proves they are no 

longer fit to look after our resource. 

The key there is simply “the indis-

criminate methods of net fishing is 

no longer acceptable to kiwis”. That’s 

all the evidence needed in a demo-

cratic nation. It’s time to speak up 

and be heard, and the new PSH trawl 

method that will save the world (ac-

cording to the commercial fishers) is 

still a trawl boat and not acceptable.

Brian Jones

ate Conservation portfolios. Dunne’s 

the proverbial bed-hopper, argu-

ably politically promiscuous, sim-

ply sycophantic support for who-

ever’s in power. Achievements to 

note? Daylight saving shuffling? 

Nuh! Shifting public holidays? 

Nuh! I don’t know of anything else.

As a swinging voter I view it as 33 

lack-lustre years. Delving has re-

vealed should Dunne get defeated 

in 2017 or resign, his ‘retirement‘ 

would conservatively be in excess 

of $100,000 per year for the rest 

of his life plus life-long 90% dis-

count on international fares for he 

and spouse, plus national super. 

By the ways what’s in 

Ohariu’s drinking water?

Tony Orman

wise “duty bound” but in this case 

to the Minister of Conservation 

Maggie Barry. We all know Mag-

gie is more a gardener than a con-

servationist don’t we? We all know 

Maggie will believe anything her 

department (DoC) tell her to do. 

We all know DOC put helicopters 

into the ranges under Wild Animal 

Recovery Operations (WARO) with 

no regard for recreational hunters. 

We also know DoC carries out 1080 

aerial drops over the conservation 

estate which takes out many deer.

I am surprised and disappointed 

NZDA seems to have been sucked in 

onto the council where it is strongly 

out voted by commercial and other 

non-recreational representatives.

Keep up the good work of keep-

ing the Kiwi fishing and hunting 

public informed of such threats.

Jason McDonald

we will need water policing and 

deterrent measures that really hurt. 

Otherwise our waters will continue 

to worsen. You drink the water you 

dump your shit in. Or you eat food 

that you spray toxins on. You get your 

rubbish dumped over your head. Or 

local variations thereof. Punishment 

is just one deterrent. We also need 

new water technologies that can 

rapidly clean these polluted waters. 

Hirini Reedy
Hawkes Bay

It is disgraceful that our harbours, 

estuaries and waterways are get-

ting polluted, to the extent they 

are and industry is allowed to con-

tinue, under the guise of building 

our economy, councils are respon-

sible and must be held accountable.

Just look at the debris from mussel 

farms yet the councils and NIWA say 

they comply. What a lot of rubbish!

Wouldn’t it be nice if Water-

care a council owned out-

fit could sort its shit out so to 

speak the year is 2017 not 1817.

It appears that our public 

health standards been ignored.

We are all responsible for our own 

actions and could do more to ensure 

that we comply and don’t dump rub-

bish and chemicals down our drains.

We should all value the health of 

the ecosystem of our waterways.

Name withheld

The Government is being urged to heed 

the just-released OECD report on New 

Zealand’s environmental performance.

In its report, the Organisation for 

Economic Co-Operation and De-

velopment (OECD) warns that New 

Zealand’s economic growth model 

is reaching its environmental limits.

Among the concerns it highlights 

are the rapidly declining inshore 

fishery, the quality of New Zea-

land’s freshwater, the impact of ir-

rigation and declining biodiversity.

The OECD report is produced 

every ten years and Fish & Game 

New Zealand chief executive Bryce 

Johnson says the latest analy-

sis makes for sobering reading.

“This report starkly portrays what 

is happening to New Zealand. 


“Much of it will be of no surprise to 

New Zealanders who are becom-

ing increasingly concerned at the 

state of their environment and the 

government needs to listen and act 

by unequivocally putting the en-

vironment first,” Mr Johnson says.

Bryce Johnson supports the OECD’s 

recommendation that the govern-

ment review its support for irrigation, 

something he says is well overdue.

“At the moment, the government is 

pouring hundreds of millions of dol-

lars into irrigation as a subsidy for in-

tensive farming and ignoring the im-

pact this is having on the environment 

and fish, including native species.

“The present situation is becom-

ing unsustainable, with examples of 

where irrigators are allowed to take 

more water from some rivers than ac-

tually exists in them“, Mr Johnson says.

Bryce Johnson says the OECD report 

highlights the lack of forward think-

ing and failure to plan strategically 

for the country’s longer term future.

“New Zealanders – especially young 

New Zealanders - are not being given 

the chance to consider what sort of 

future country and society they want 

and plan to achieve their dream.

“Unfortunately, formally structured, 

national, transparent, long term fu-

tures thinking and planning is simply 

not happening, and the country is suf-

fering as a result,” ’Mr Johnson says.

He says it is time the government 

confronted this failure by turning 

its back on short term expediency 

and establishing a Parliamentary 

Commission for Future Generations.

“What is needed is a body to provide 

clear, politically independent advice 

to the government on preparing for 

the future – something that is becom-

ing increasingly essential if we are to 

protect New Zealand’s future competi-

tiveness in the global market-place.”

Mr Johnson says there a clear ben-

efits having such a commission.

“For a country so reliant on its soils, 

fresh water and natural landscapes, 

we urgently need a body formally re-

sponsible for identifying and publish-

ing options for our path to the future. 

“Our economy is heavily depend-

ent on its land and water yet we are 

treating the environment woefully. 


“Future generations will not thank us 

when they inherit the consequences of 

this critical failure to properly plan for 

them, rather than focussing on making 

a quick buck now,” Mr Johnson says.

“We must start planning to abandon 

the present failed economic strategy 

based on degrading our natural re-

sources and expanding visitor numbers 

to the point where over-crowding is 

displacing Kiwis in their own outdoors.

“This would fit well with the find-

ings and recommendations of this 

latest OECD report and position 

New Zealand well for its next report.”

Govt - lack of forward 

thinking and planning