Today's letter: Yacht race

While I do not condone Ms Timms' actions, I can understand the sentiments behind her commenting on the proposed funding contribution to the Auckland-to-Bluff yacht race.

Many residents of Invercargill can only dream of an income of even $20,000 and struggle to pay the ever-increasing rates demands supposedly necessary to cover essentials like roading, transport and public amenities without being spent on expensive reports which achieve nothing.

Then comes the article about the Government's plan to contribute $440,000 to a race for mega- yachts.

We are aware of the Government funding these types of events, but to read that our supposedly needy council (hence the annual rate increases), is also going to contribute beggars belief.

Surely the contribution should come from those most likely to benefit.

The Invercargill Licensing Trust has always done well from these events and so should be a source of funding.

I do not want to see my rates going to this event, as it is not of benefit to the ordinary ratepayer of Invercargill or even Bluff.

To make matters even worse, I then read of Mr Shadbolt's comments at the Southern Institute of Technology graduation ceremony. To use this event as an opportunity to criticise Ms Timms is not what most people would consider best behaviour by our mayor.

To read that the ICC is expected to make a sizeable financial contribution makes me ask: who expects this to be made?

Surely if the participants are rich enough to have these boats, they are rich enough to pay for their play.

Margaret Clyma

Abridged - Editor

The Southland Times