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Tue 25 Nov: Permits; Waipu; Fat dogs

Published: 3:51PM Tuesday November 25, 2008

The Building Code and Compliance is it consumer protection or bureaucracy gone mad? Why for example does it take eight inspections to get building approval for a toilet - eight! How about a small alteration job where you're pinged more than two and a half thousand dollars for a permit and consent. Talk to any builder, designer or architect and they'll tell the whole process has come outrageously complex and slow. John Sellwood with examples of consent process excesses and an interview with the minister of local government and regulatory reform, Rodney Hide.

It's no secret it's not easy to sell real estate right now and everyone's looking for a pitch with a difference. But how about this gimmick - the store owners trying to sell their business by insulting the locals. By offering to sell their business to only ugly people so they will fit in with the locals. And they even put a sign outside the store to that effect. It certainly caught Michael Holland's interest.

Fat dogs
A few months ago, it wasn't looking good for Bert and Ernie. We met the two dogs from the SPCA when they were seriously overweight and could hardly waddle their way through the garden. Now, they're completely different beasts, with the pounds piling off they've been entered into Pet Slimmer of the Year. And they're healthy enough to be considered for adoption to have a family they can call their own. Gill Higgins with a happy tail.