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Sun, Mar. 6th, 2005, 12:52 am
doc_spatial: Just A Quick Note - It's late, and the signal is fading. Stupid rain.

I now, officially, have too many passports.
New Zealand: That's one. OK, it's a slightly smaller country than it was when I was first issued with the thing, but it still counts.
Auckland Travel Documents: They let me enter and leave another country, so as far as I am concerned, they count.
EU: Nuff said.
NSK: OK, so it's citizenship in the New Slovenian Art Movement. It's still a passport, even though it doesn't get me into anything but concerts and shows in an area of the world I hardly ever visit.
Whangarei Heads: Yeah, you read right. I now have to have a passport to go to work.

Some background? Glad you asked.

The roads out this way have been decaying for years, but the Whangarei Heads Road is particularly low-lying and right on the coast, so it's been taking a pounding as the spring tides get bigger. Council does nothing. Central Government does nothing.

There were four days last year when, due to the weather, anyone not driving a 4WD could not make it past the coastal portions; too much water on the roads.
Hell, the year before last some madman in a Toyota Prius got sucked off the road by a surge. (He was OK, the car floated pretty well, and the community ferry was nearby & got there in time. The Prius was fucked though)

Anyway, last week the gazette notice went through officially de-classifying those bits of the road that are no longer usable, which is basically anything with the sea on one side. Since there are still roadways inland, the authorities take the view that there is still access, and to hell with the trifling lack of surface, or signage, or indeed a space you can fit a car through thanks to the fucking GM Wilding Pine.

So, in response, the Heads Residents Assoc., ironically chaired by one of my co-workers, decided that a rates revolt simply wasn't big enough, and declared regional independence.
  • Taxes still get paid to central government; what they do with them is their problem
  • No local body rates get paid. Nothing.
  • Those roads which have been kept open by the hard work of the locals (The Heads Honchos have been doing a damn fine job of this one - Rather than paying their share of the fuel costs for community transport, it's payment in kind by clearing the damn roads, and they get to do what they like with the wood that they personally cut) just became toll roads for everyone who isn't a resident.
  • The power companies can come and rip up their power lines any time they like. Granted, we're still using bits of the network, but only because it's an easy way to spread the surplus around, and it's not like it's connected to the main grid anymore. (The substation went under four years ago in a storm surge: You could see the transformers going up from three kilometers away. 38D )
  • Water? It is to laugh; You couldn't keep algae alive on that crap they pump. Everyone I know has a tank.


There you have it; The Not So Much Independent As Highly Obnoxious Pseudo-Anarchic Rabble Of Whangarei Heads.

Nice one.

C.

P.S. - I'm hoping to get together with some people this weekend & rig a dedicated transmitter at the top of the Brynderwyns; It's only a matter of time before they cut the phone lines, so it'd be nice to be ahead of that game. Plus the exchanges are all on our side, so patching them through to the transmitter should be pretty easy, I am told.
Me, I just figure the lines-of-sight.

Sun, Jul. 24th, 2005 05:37 am (UTC)
nzgrl: New Zealand

Hi

I just moved to New Zealand from the US. We are in the Hawkes Bay area. I am 13 and I'm wondering if I could get some more info on the area.

Tanx