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Friday, 23 December 2016

INCOMPETENT INORGANIC: PART 4

The next step was to fire off an email about this shemozzle to the Mayor, Phil Goff. This was the response. It was not from him, it was from yet another bureaucrat.

RE: [Fwd: RE: [Auckland City] Allocated: Request 1832047  Priority 3: Rubbish Missed.]

Dear Mr Ceramalus,

Thank you for your email to the Mayor. This is an operational matter that the Mayor is unable to assist with.

As requested by Hazel Durkin, your permission is needed in order to carry out the collection of the item, as the contractor is concerned about potentially damaging your stairs. If you accept the potential risk, the collection can be arranged within the next week.

Please send your response to Lynda Totua, copied in.

Kind regards,
Alison

Alison Grant | Correspondence Manager
Office of the Mayor of Auckland
Level 27, 135 Albert Street
Victoria Street West, Private Bag 92300 Auckland 1142,
Visit our website: www.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz

Weasel words. Notice how bureaucrats minds work. They state a 'seems' or an 'is concerned' or a 'possibility' or a 'consideration' or some such term, based on nothing but bureaucratic imaginings. Next that groundless non-fact is treated as a hard fact.

Here, they have chosen 'concern'. Their contractor has a 'concern' that if he uses a trolley he will damage my steps (which they insist, wrongly, on calling stairs). To the other bureaucrats that 'concern' is then deployed as a fact. It ignores the real fact that the publicity about this stupid collection system says that items must be able to be 'carried by two men.' Carried is carried. But bureaucrats are like Humpty Dumpty: 'Words mean whatever I say they mean.' So now 'carried' is 'taken on a trolley.' But it is an unnecessary trolley, because this item can be carried 10 metres. Far further, in real fact, by two men. Real men. Men with muscles. Men who are not lazy and powered by bureaucratic mainsprings.

So having changed the English language they invent a 'risk' on top of it, and throw their brainless ball back into my court. I must take the 'risk' of 'damage' to my 'stairs' (steps, people, they are steps). So now they are happy. They have blamed me, so all the inaction on their part will be my fault.

Step 1: a groundless 'fact'. Step 2: Treat that as a fact. Step 3: use that to throw the onus off themselves on to the ratepayer. DONE!

The above email has established another thing. The Mayor is hamstrung, walled off by bureaucrats from the people who elected him in a landslide. He does not see an email addressed to him. It is diverted. He is prevented from doing anything.

It is not worth wasting any more life on this Empire of Mainliner Fools. The inorganic item in question can stay where it is. Unless I get it picked up by a commercial carrier, then take the Empire to the Disputes Tribunal to get reimbursed. Last time I took the Empire there I won.

Footnote: It has yet to be established that the Empire has the legal right to create this collection-system for inorganic rubbish in which they can demand access for their contractors to private property to ferret about for it. 'Warwick'. who is two rungs above Hazel Durkin says that making an appointment for them to come gives them that right, but that is a spurious argument, because the system is such that the 'appointment' is made under duress. If you want a collection you must give access, because the system they created demands it.

Thursday, 22 December 2016

INCOMPETENT INORGANIC: PART 3

Today--some time after I had sent an email on this bureaucratic nonsense to the Mayor, Phil Goff--I received this email from the incompetent outfit over on the mainland, which after a month has still not collected the small fridge-freezer  I put out for the inorganic collection (for 'mainland' read the depository of mainliner bureaucrats high on their own methamphetamine vanity and incompetence):

RE: [Auckland City] Allocated: Request 1832047 Priority 3: Rubbish Missed.

Dear Mr Ceramalus,

I am writing to update on your enquiry regarding the inorganic collection.

Please be advised I have visited the site to make an assessment and could agree 
with both your assessment and the contractors.

I have asked that the contractor returns with a trolley to assist in lifting the 
item up the stairs.

The contractor is concerned about damaging the stairs which are slightly loose.  
Please can you confirm you are happy to accept this risk?

We'll try to get back tomorrow, so please respond today if you are able.  
Otherwise next week is possible also.

Kind Regards,
Hazel

Hazel Durkin | Senior Waste Advisor (Contracts)
Waste Solutions - Infrastructure & Environmental Services
Mobile 021 716 516
Auckland Council, Level 1N, 24 Wellesley Street West, Auckland




This woman should be sacked. She says she agrees both with me and the worthless lazy contractors who refuse to collect this item. That is bureaucratic fence-sitting on steroids. They should pump those steroids into the muscles of their contractors; then they might be able to carry this thing.

First: the contractor does not need a 'trolley' to carry this. Two men--real men, with real muscles--can carry it. When it was replaced with a much bigger one, two men, one young, carried the replacement all the way down to my dwelling: 80 metres. This can easily be carried by two men--real men, with real muscles. The 'trollety' is and all the rest of it is just a plethora of excuse-making to cover all their collective backsides, it is just to reinforce the lying pretence that the thing cannot be carried by the 'two men' quoted in the leaflets.

Second: there are no loose steps. The stakes holding them go deep. Thousands of things, many heavy, have been carried over them over the years. She is inventing to cover her incompetent backside.

Third: this brainless, extravagant, incompetent, wasteful woman used ratepayers' money and time to come all the way out here on a ferry and a car/bus/taxi to 'visit the site'. That is a return trip of about four hours. The woman is a damned fool.

Fourth: when I tried to call her, she had of course had herself replaced by 'voicemail'. So had her boss. So had her boss's boss. They are meant to be public servants. That means being accessible to the public. That fact has obviously not entered their bureaucratic heads.

Fifth: that 'Kind Regards' is wicked hypocrisy. Weasel-words.

She is incompetent, a liar, a bureaucrat, a fool and extravagantly wasteful. She should be sacked, sacked, sacked. She does not deserve employment at public expense.

This lot couldn't organise its way out of a wet paper-bag with the help of nuclear weapons and a squadron of bulldozers. Would that we had our own council on Waiheke Island and no longer had to deal with dumb-as-a-brick mainliners like this!

If these arch-fools had been in charge of allied forces in World War II we would have lost the war, we would all be speaking Nazi German, and be worshipping the corpse of Hitler. No, I am not angry, I am livid that my rates and taxes are pouring in the pockets of creatures whose mental capacity and general competence is so rubbishy that they cannot carry out a simple rubbish-collection, either on the day appointed by them (which I was ready for), even when given a month since then to do it since then, even after repeated phone calls and emails, even when I did everything demanded by them in their false-hearted advertised rules. Such creatures are the scum of the earth; every single day they thieve time and money out of others' lives; they are mindless bureaucratic thugs. They are dysfunctional, they have a sub-functional mindset, they are incapable of acting in anyone's best interests. All such creatures should be sacked, sacked, sacked.

If the fools who run Auckland Council had a worthwhile neuron they would institute psychometric testing, and employ no one who failed. Then they would be employing public servants, not bureaucrats, who are sociopaths or psychopaths, and therefore they would save billions because they would not have to be employing anything like the number they do employ. Bureaucrats are egregiously wasteful. Public servants are efficient and prudent.


Sunday, 18 December 2016

INCOMPETENT INORGANIC PART 2

Eleven days after the appointed inorganic pickup date for my address, and after only two phone calls
to the Council--only two!!--I was honoured with a call from a bureaucrat at the high-and-mighty
Auckland Council--that bastion of mainliners perched on a permanent high of their own petty power--a woman who announced herself as Hazel in a Pommy accent.

Bureaucrats don't have surnames, see, because they likes to live in Anonymous Land so that people
can't get at them... They doesn't like people, see. People is a nuisance, see. Worse than blowflies
at a picnic, see.

But my VOIP phone automatically records every single word of every single conversation in an MP3
file, so modern technology neatly defeats them boo-rock-rat wishes. It was stamped 09:54:00 on
06/12/2016 if you wants de boo-rock-rat accuracy.

(Not even the Pied Piper of Hamelin can get rid of boo-rock-rats. That's a well-known scientific
fact. Even more factual than gravity and the unwelcome pulling of ponytails.)

'The item was left because of the stairs,' quoth Hazel, as the MP3 file silently recorded. 'It
wasn't safe to carry the item down the stairs. They've made that assessment.'

I told her that that was rubbish (perfect pun, notice), and asked how did she think I got the thing
in here in the first place. And how did I manage to take it 70 metres back up the hill, all by my
unaided thread-like self, so that the Council's weak and timid collectors would not have to exert
themselves and risk their lives.

Of course, in talking to her I didn't use terms like 'thread-like' and 'weak and timid', because
mainliners don't have no sense of humour, see. (Maybe the full stop in that last sentence should be
after 'sense'. Then it would be 'Mainliners don't have no sense. Of humour. See.' Yes, much better.
Editing is such fun.)

'I don't accept that,' quoth Hazel, our unwitting MP3 Star. 'We actually had our independent
auditors out with them at the time, and they agreed with the decision.'

Whaaaaaaaaaaat! They carry 'independent auditors' about with them in their collection truck! So now
we know that they mainline on an overweening mix of steroids and petty power. Wow! That's progress.
Yes, my favourite one-word joke. Again. I get so many chances to use it in this midden world. And
getting more midden by the minute.

Hazel continued with her quothing: 'I support their decision. I can't ask them to go and collect
something that they think is a health-and-safety issue.'

But not a common sense issue, or even uncommon sense, or any kind of sense. Weak and timid, see.

Hazel quothed on: 'If you can get the item down the stairs, we will collect it.'

Small errors, there, Hazel. First it is up, not down. And thems is actually steps, not stairs.
Stairs is wot you has inside a building, O Unwitting MP3 Star. Steps is what you have outside, in a
path, on the edge of the porch, outside Pallymunt, etc. The fridge-freezer is waiting at the foot of
the STEPS--the foot--so it had to go up. UP, Hazel, not down. Wot an accurate report the
'independent auditors' did for our MP3 Star. They know not their up from their down or their stairs
from their steps or their health and safety issues from a piddling liddle fridge-freezer that they
had to carry a mere 7 metres.

And they cannot read their own advertising. The Orcland Council website says; 'Items should be able
to be lifted by two people. Accepted: Large appliances--fridges, freezers, washing machines and
ovens'. Misleading advertising, see. AKA lies.

But if I were do wot the MP3 Star wants and take the 'item' up the steps I would be leaving it on
the side of the road. Because that is what is at the top of them steps. But the high-and-mighty
Auckland Council calls that illegal dumping, and fines you up to $400, and sends you to Guantanamo
Bay without the option of a surfboard so that you can chat with radical Islamists for the next fifty
years.

So I now have an ornament at the foot of the steps below my letterbox. A fridge-freezer. A very dead
one. Lying down. A bit of modern sculpture, some performance-art, entitled 'Death of Civilisation.'

Not everyone has one. But don't be jealous. You too can have one. You just put one out for Orc's
indigestible, incompetent, inept, infuriating inorganic-collection system. Which will leave it for
you, artistically positioned, and festooned with a note to say that it will not be taken.

Like boo-rock-rats, it's impossible to take.

Would that we could get rid of the Supercilious Supersilly and get back our own Council and run our own affairs, free for ever of the malign injections from those mainliners over the water!

Sunday, 4 December 2016

INCOMPETENT INORGANIC

The new system for collecting inorganic rubbish is wunnerful, wunnerful, wunnerful!

You sign up for it, they send you an email to tell you what day they will be coming, asking you to
leave the stuff out (but not on the edge of the road, 'cause that's dumping), and they will come on
to your property on that day, some time after 7am, to take it away.

Fine.

No, not fine. I put six items out, all of them ones on their approved list, and together nowhere
near the maximum volume ('no more than would fill a small trailer').

I arrived home at the end of the designated day to find that only five of the six had gone. What was
left was a small fridge-freezer, with a note to say that it was too heavy for them to take.

Of course I understand that. It was not too heavy for me to take--all by myself--the 70 metres from
my dwelling to where I left it for them--only 7 metres from the road. I did that, just me, using my
antique muscles, which are older than Methuselah (who is on record as having lived 969 years),
muscles only slightly stronger than a malnourished pipi running on flat batteries.

But it seems not to have entered the official skulls to employ a couple of hefty Maori blokes
capable of lifting the entire planet on the tip of one hand whilst scoffing a pile of chips with the
other one. No, their blokes cannot, even when there are two of them, lift a small fridge-freezer.

So I called 301-0101, went through the usual labyrinth on the phone, whilst listening at the normal
high volume to what someone brain-dead likes to call music, and was then put into the 'escalation'
process, which has a lead-time of five working days. Wunnerful!

Sadly, that will not give their weaklings long enough to bulk up so that they will be able to move 7
metres what my malnourished pipis could move 70. I can see this process going on for 969 years.

Which is yet another reason for me to call the word 'progress' a one-word joke.

The pre-collection advertising said that items had to be able to be lifted by two men. Obviously something that could be moved by only one did not qualify. Or perhaps political-correctness has redefined 'men'. It now means weaklings.

Update 1: Ten days after the original collection-time the fridge-freezer has still not been taken, despite two calls to the Council. The contractor has not yet even emailed me...

Update 2; It is now eleven days after the collection date. I have just had a call from a hyperbolically bureaucratic woman from the Council, who said that the fridge-freezer would not be collected, because carrying it up the steps to the road was 'a health and safety issue', and that that had been checked by 'independent auditors', and that she 'supported the decision.' Please! If those purblind fools at the Council insist on changing the system that has worked for years (we took our inorganic items to the side of the road), and replacing it with one in which collectors come on to our properties to collect it, that means that on Waiheke, which has a large number of properties with steep access, up and down, including some with flights of steps from the road that are many times longer than my short 7 metres, then they must accommodate a wide variety of situations. I told that very stupid woman that I have, by myself, carried heavy things up and down those steps many many times. There are only twenty-nine steps, in three short flights, with two landings on the way up for taking a rest. So their 'two men' should find it easy to carry a small fridge-freezer up. Two--me and another man--carried it down, years ago. Those people are intransigent bureaucratic fools, with a bad system and the attitudes of blockheads. To repeat, I moved the fridge-freezer, by myself, up the hill the 70 metres from my cabin, but those bureaucrats say they cannot move it the remaining 7 metres with two 'men.' 'Progess' is indeed a one-word joke.

Would that we again had our own Council and were not ruled by arrogant bureaucrats over the water!

Sunday, 30 October 2016

SELF-GOVERNANCE, MONEY, MARINE RESERVES

Those opposed to a Waiheke Council on the imaginary grounds that we could not afford self-governance are being blind to the colossal waste foisted upon us by The Empire Over The Water--by Rodney Hide's Supercilious Super-Silly. If we had our own hands on our own purse-strings we could cut out all of that. They are also being blind to the detailed, careful budgeting published by the Our Waiheke people. Of course we can run an island of 8200 on $24 million. In 2010 when the numbers were crunched the average rates were $1600; without Auckland they would have been $1300.

The hubristic Empire has a Rolls-Royce mentality and a waywardness with money that treats the
anguish of ratepayers with contempt. But it has to support its bloated staff of 11,000, and its
out-of-control 'Council-Controlled Organisations.'

Two large instances of waste out of many are easy to give. First the millions Waiheke missed out on
in NZTA subsidies for roads and footpaths, because for years they fell far short of applying for our
full entitlements. Second, the library. We needed a new one, yes, but it did not need to cost $9
million--after 'out of control spending' blew out an already exorbitant $5.4 million budget. A good
building with the same sort of facilities could have been built for a lot less than that $5.4
million, minus the fripperies and the huge waste in the planning stages. There was meeting after
meeting with expensive architects, making plans, plans, plans--which were inappropriate, and were
scrapped. So was the expensive newly-installed sign outside the old complex. The latter was an
example of failure to plan ahead. The Empire is incapable of planning a bunion.

Many small wasteful things add up to large waste. Small ones include the timetables in bus-shelters.
We used to put copies of the same timetables supplied on buses, which show all the bus and ferry
services all over the island, which is what people want to know. That was simple and cheap. But The Empire Over The Water decided to give unique numbers to all the shelters, and then to print numbered, customised timetables for each one, which of course must be reprinted and replaced every time there is a change. But each numbered timetable only shows the services from that stop, not all the services for the whole island. So now people do not get the information they need, but at far greater expense. Then there is manifold overspending on contracts, such as $3800 for four wood-faced steps in a bush track (which to add insult to injury were ill-made). That's about 6 metres of timber and some nails--roughly $30 worth. When I was on the Board I refused to sign it off. But they did it anyway. Rolls-Royce bureaucrats rule.

Auckland is a mess. An overspending mess. It is a overspending mess in its own backyard (look, for
example, at the number of times it has torn up and repaved Queen Street's footpaths). We do not need
that bloated mess in our backyard.

And to the people who have been running full-page advertisements about marine reserves demonising
some candidates. You are ignoring the fact that that would ONLY be done after an island referendum.
It would not be the decision of a few Board members.

Footnote: the 1989 takeover of the islands by Auckland City Council was illegal under the Local
Government Act. In the Act, three things must be true to be a city and a city council. When Auckland
took over the islands it lost two of them. Therefore from then on it was not legally a city. But no
one noticed so it was not challenged. We have the right in natural justice to get back was
unlawfully stolen from us in 1989.

AT AND THE BUSES

Oh, goody!, said the boys and girls at AT. We have a really, really brilliant idea. We'll get the
Waiheke Bus Company to paint its buses in nice flash colours. Think how much that will improve the
bus service over there where all them hippies and drug-addicts live. They will be SO happy. And it
only costs $90,000 per bus. Not much to us city-siders. So they gave the command: paint them silver
or silver-and-navy-blue.

Oh, goody!, said the boys and girls at AT. We have a really, really brilliant idea. We'll get the
Waiheke Bus Company to paint its buses in new flash colours. We've changed our minds about silver or silver-and-navy-blue. Now we want different colours, and 'Waiheke Link' and stuff splashed long the sides as well. And it only costs $90,000 all over again. Not much. Not very much.

Oh, goody, said the boys and girls at AT. We have a really, really brilliant idea. We'll change the
bus timetables. But we won't reprint them in advance so that everyone can look up the new times--and we'll make a mess of the website so that they will be hard to find there. And because we are very clever we'll put on the website that the buses leave the bays at two minutes to the hour instead of on the hour as they have for ever and a day. Think how much that will foul up the lives of all and sundry! Yay! Aren't we clever city-siders!? Oh, yes!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

How wunnerful it is to have our lives ruled by mainlanders. You see, they have superior brains. Very
superior.

Sunday, 26 June 2016

CHOKED BROADBAND PIPES

I have just prepared to upgrade to VDSL from ADSL2, because Chorus said it was now available where I am (I only have copper available not fibre, so VDSL is the maximum speed I can get). That should give me a much faster download speed, up from a present maximum of about 7.5 megabits per second to something well over 20Mbps, even more than 30Mbps, depending on which article on the Internet you read. Some data gives 50Mbps as achievable by VDSL.

But the super-brain technical bod who reset my router remotely so it would handle VDSL automatically when Chorus connected my line to a different circuit was astounded to see that even under ADSL2 it was signalling to the Waiheke exchange at a massive 21Mbps (and ADSL2 is meant to peak at 10Mbps). So why, if it is talking to the exchange at that speed am I only getting 7.5Mbps from the Internet?

The answer he said is that the link off the island over to that place called New Zealand does not have
enough bandwidth to cope when we are all on line. Which means that all the upgrades on the island by Chorus to ADSL2 and VDSL, even to fibre where it is available, are being hampered by the size of the 'pipe'--the bandwidth of the link between us and the mainland.

It is about time Chorus gave us a better link so that we get the full benefit of whatever category
of line we have. Otherwise upgrades are like the Tooth Fairy–a lot of fiction and only a sixpence
under your pillow.

Thursday, 26 May 2016

ANOTHER GROSS MONSTROSITY PROPOSED

I wish these people and all ike them would give up and go away.

First they put the island through a long and expensive fight to prevent an ugly monstrosity of a marina in Matiatia Bay--a fight they rightly lost hands down. But now something even more monstrous is being proposed at Kennedy Point. Yet again it is over-the-top vandalism, this time of Anzac Bay.





Sunday, 22 May 2016

TO MAKE WAIHEKE RATES FAIR

The way our rates are calculated is grossly unfair, and in the end will kill Waiheke.
Under the New Zealand Bill of Rights Act 1990 we have the right to a fair system, because section 27 tells officialdom that everyone has the right to the observance of the principles of natural justice, which the House of Lords has ruled means 'fairness writ large.' And the rights laid down in our oldest law, the Imperial Laws Applications Act 1988, makes it incumbent on authorities not to bring ruin upon individuals or communities.
To base rates on assumed property values—which are now only rateable values with little or no relationship to actual market values—is iniquitous. It means that someone with an old bach that happens to have been built in what the market now sees as a prime location will be rated an amount that is highway robbery. Robbery by a bloated mainland regime with a highway mentality and speculators for brains.
Many islanders are asset-rich and cash-poor, because that insufferable idol 'market forces' has bestowed a high value on their property that has no relationship to their modest or minimal incomes. So they are rated out of their homes, which are bulldozed and replaced by sprawling palaces, which further increase rateable valuations in that neighbourhood, and so the vicious process continues like a Canadian wild-fire, until wonderful Waiheke has been destroyed. That process is accelerated by the fact that the palaces are often only part-time palaces, just super-baches, so the permanent community is eroded.
We know all that, but are powerless to stop it under the present regime. If we had our own council we could institute a rating regime that really would be fairness writ large, writ very large. So more strength to Our Waiheke's fight to get us back to having our own council. (In the meantime we could try getting feisty with the Super Silly and press for a fair system, and when the SS refuses, as it would, add that to our case for our own council, pointing to the way the SS has not acted in our best social, economic, environmental and cultural interests.)
We need a way of creating rateable values that would not drive out those on minimal, modest and middle incomes, and would militate against the spread of sprawling palaces. A simple way of achieving that would be to use a formula to create rateable valuations based on floor-area (and they would be purely rateable valuations, made only for rating purposes, not exorbitant 'market' valuations). Income and floor-area are well related: poor people live in modest houses not palaces; the wealthy do not live in cabins.
In such a formula the domestic floor-area would be the basis of the calculation. It would exclude external garages, workshops, livestock accommodation, etc. It would be just the home and any sleepouts (the home-space would include integrated garage-space).
Under that way of calculating rates the annual general charges would also be calculated on the same floor-areas.
So the total rates on a property would be the combination of a rate and an annual general charge, and if the formula was such that it traced out a rising hyperbolic curve for the whole island (a curve that starts fairly flat and rises ever more steeply as it assesses the sprawling palaces), the result would be eminently fair to those on minimal, modest and middle incomes, and also to those on high and very wealthy incomes. Everyone's rates would be a close match to their incomes. A thousand dollars to a billionaire is like a dollar to a pensioner widow. The floor-area basis would also discourage excessive enlargement of houses, and could be tweaked to make ones above a certain size prohibitively expensive.
A very fair formula is the one below,  in which R is the total rates and F is the floor-area described above. The first part of the formula, the bit before the plus sign, is for reckoning the rates proper, and the second is for reckoning the annual general charge:
R = 0.0005*F³ + F/.5
In words, the rates on a property would be the cube of the floor-area multiplied by 0.0005, and the annual general charge would be the floor-area divided by 0.5 (the 0.0005 and 0.5 were arrived at by experimentation, based on arriving at reasonable figures for average homes, but the most important thing is that the steepening curve produced by the cube in the first part of the formula and also by the divisor in the second part, not what multiplier and divisor might actually be used; those two just found to be good ones).
That would mean, for examples, that properties with houses with floor-areas of 30m², 50m², 90m², 125m², 300m², and 1000m² would have these rates bills each year: for 30m², $73.50; for 50m², $162.50; for 90m² (a common size for a 3-bedroom house), $544.50; for 125m², $1226; for 300m², $14,100; and for 1000m², $502,000.
The council would first reckon a total for the island then adjust those individual rates to match the budget it had arrived at after public consultation. For example, it might be that using that formula the total for the island would come to, say, $15 million (to give a purely hypothetical figure), and the council budget might be $20 million (ditto). In that case all the above figures would be multiplied by 20/15, i.e., 1.333, making them: for 30m², $97.98; for 50m², $216.61; for 90m², $725.82; for 125m², $1624.36; for 300m², $18,795.30; and for 1000m², $669,166. For a widow on pension in a 30m² cottage $97.98 has the same sort of relationship to her income as $669,166 does to a billionaire's.

Most people would be in the lower, flat part of the exponential curve. Excessive houses would be in the upper, ever-steeper parts. (It is obvious that homes with huge areas would face rates that might be prohibitive even for billionaires, so a ceiling could be set at a certain area, at which the rates curve would flatten off.)

That system would end forever the rates regime which if left will corrode and kill our community and our way of life. That must not happen.