Balance to dog review
As always there are two sides to every story. Andrew Searles [Examiner, December 3, 'Have your say on dog review'], under the guise of a feel good, Utopian world of dog ownership, sanitises the reality on the ground.
Dog owners can already use Shelley Beach 16 out of 24 hours off lead and all the time on lead. Eighty percent of the excluded times dogs are still on the loose.
The ugly side is the irresponsible number of dog owners, particularly with large dogs exercising little or no control. It is not pleasant to see young children in tears after being rushed at and parents abused for pointing out lack of ownership responsibility.
There is a reason dogs are still prohibited from many beaches. The economic argument is fairly spurious, with a significant number of residents being happy to see a slowing of tourism growth based on the weekend and holiday chaos in the area. Particularly in this COVID-19 year, welcome to the future.
I have experienced the joy of dog ownership and also the pain of a dog attack. A balanced review with consideration of public safety would be of benefit to all.
Jorg Griep, Anna Bay
Why do Port Stephens residents still have to drive for an hour to the nearest major hospital? With the rapidly increasing aged population surely it is time for more than a small polyclinic in the [Nelson Bay] area?
It's just not feasible for older people to have a long drive to see a relative in a Newcastle hospital. And what of the summer influx of holiday makers? I am astonished that more has not been done to rectify the situation.
Lynette Whittall, Penrith
Thanks to health care pros
We are now seeing the lifting of COVID-19 restrictions approved by the health professionals throughout Australia.
Whilst state governments and their health departments endured much criticism from local businesses, media and the public, we in Australia have survived. Although, some families have lost loved ones.
Here in Port Stephens, especially in our aged care facilities, we need to thank our professional care managers and many of their dedicated staff for their commitment to the aged and frail. We thank all those involved - volunteers, families and the health authorities - for their support in these trying times.
Gerry Mohan, Shoal Bay
Patience for a busy Bay
The Midnight Oil song Stand in Line has become the anthem for the Bay. Everywhere you go there are lines of people waiting to get into places.
Saturday night is bizarre. On the way home from work on Saturday every club and pub I passed had hundreds of people waiting to get in at Shoal Bay; one line extended around the corner all the way to the top of the hill.
Christmas holiday season is going to be a good old fashioned battle but great entertainment for us locals.
Steve Barnett, Fingal Bay
Lack of high rise a blessing
The topic of high rise in Port Stephens is a contentious issue and in my voluntary work with Marine Rescue, I come into contact with many tourists who comment how beautiful Port Stephens is because of the lack of high rise buildings.
Many of these people come from cities that are swamped by huge apartment and office blocks. They come here to escape, enjoy the ambiance, beaches, bushland, breath the fresh air and embrace the stunning scenery. Places that I holidayed at have been ruined. Forster, Port Macquarie, Coffs Harbour and the Gold Coast have all been smothered by high rise and greedy developers.