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Coastal erosion issues, use of Roundup (Glyphosate) – Mercury Bay Community Board meeting highlights.

05 November 2020

The Mercury Bay Community Board met this week.

Check out the highlights from the meeting below or you can view the full agenda here or view the video of the meeting here.

In the public forum:

• An Otama resident spoke regarding item 5.2 in support of a license to allow them to plant native plants on a portion of Council road reserve on the Black Jack Road.

• A Whitianga resident requested that the Board look into ways to allow Superannuation Gold card holders to travel for free on the Whitianga ferry.

• Representatives from the Whitianga Community Fund presented a proposal to build pensioner housing at School Road in Whitianga.  The housing will have no financial impact to ratepayers with the cost of the build and all statutary costs being covered by the Community Fund.

In the meeting:

2.1 Request to Change Use of 2020/2021 Mercury Bay Community Board Grant

A request from “Bellyful Whitianga,” to change the use of the remaining funds of their $302 Mercury Bay Community Board Community Grant to purchase an advertising banner was approved. This banner will include the TCDC logo.

2.3 Buffalo Beach Erosion – Mercury Bay Boating Club

The Mercury Bay Boating Club have requested our Council help find a solution to prevent further coastal erosion in front of its  clubhouse building, which is located on Council reserve land, to prevent it from being undermined.  A rock wall has been suggested by the Club as the best solution.

The Board have requested staff monitor the condition of the beach and dune system in the area around the Clubhouse to see if there is significant erosion and come back with actions and costs if more immediate action is needed.

Council staff will now also work on an options report, with recommended actions and costs to address erosion along the Buffalo Beach coastline - from Whitianga Wharf to Brophy’s Beach - and to report back to the Community Board.  This will be funded from the Board’s Coastal Protection budget – and also tie in with our Shoreline Management Plan project.

You can read the full report here.

4.1 Roundup (Glyphosate) Use

At its meeting on 30 September 2020, the Mercury Bay Community Board requested that staff investigate and provide an in-depth report on the costs and options for using an alternative to the herbicide Roundup, especially near places where people eat.  Staff provided the board with an indepth report of its findings which you can read here.

Whilst the Board acknowledges that Glyphosate is the cheapest form of weed control and supports that Council will continue to use Glyphosate until the Environment Protection Agency
declares it unsafe to do so, they have requested a trial of an alternative pest plant control plan in the esplanade playground Whitianga.

5.1 Mercury Bay Community Board Work Programme 2020/2021

You can view the Community Board’s full work programme for the 2020/21 year here.

Some highlights to note:

Whangapoua Boat Ramp re-development - Construction work has been copmleted and the boat-ramp is now open to the public. The pontoon is not scheduled to be installed until the 2022-23 financial year.

Taputapuatea Walkway and footbridge -  Was officially opened with a karakia from Joe Davis (Ngati Hei) in October.  Cultural values assessment, development and management plan are still to be developed with Ngati Hei for this special area. (pictured above)

Mercury Bay Skatepark - This project is progressing well with completion due before Christmas.  Concrete is being poured to create the bowl this week.

5.2 License to Occupy Road Reserve­ Black Jack Road, Otama

The owners of 344 Black Jack Road submitted a management plan to enhance and maintain the road reserve outside the property by removing invasive/exotic plant species and planting native plants.  The Board were asked to consider the request  under a Licence to Occupy Road Reserve and have recommended to Council to approve the  licence.

You can read the full request here.

5.3 Parking Control Bylaw Schedule A Amendments

The Board requested that Council approve two amendments to Schedule A of the Parking Control Bylaw to install no stopping lines outside 3 Albert St, Whitianga, to prevent cars parking in front of a driveway; and to install no campervan parking signs on Grange Rd in Hahei to allow adequate lane width for vehicles.

To view the recommended amendments in deltail see this link.

6.1 Proposed Road Name ­ Whitianga Waterways

The Board recommended that Council approve the proposed road names within Stage 12 of the Whitianga Waterways development. (RMA/2019/1)

The names approved are:

Road 1 – Kupe Drive
Road 2 – Ngaroma Crescent
Road 3 – Ronomor Place
Jointly Owned Access Lot (JOAL) – Norma Way

You can read the meanings behind these names here.