Summer Tips & Information

Summer on the Coromandel

Our Council Summer Office Hours

Our Council service centres will be closed 24 December and all public holidays, and open on 27, 28 and 31 December from 9am - 4pm, expect for Coromandel Town which will be closed from 24 December. Normal hours resume on 3 January 2019 at all our service centres.

If you have any general enquiries over this time send us an email: customer.services@tcdc.govt.nz. (Please note that this email address is only monitored during office hours). For urgent enquires you can contact us on our 24-hour service line: 07 868 0200.

District Office – Thames

Closed: Monday 24 December - Wednesday 26 December 2018 and Tuesday 1 January - Wednesday 2 January 2019.
Open: 9.00am - 4.00pm,Thursday 27 December, Friday 28 December and Monday 31 December 2018.
Re-open to normal business hours: 8.00am - 5.00pm, Thursday 3 January 2019.

Coromandel Town Service Centre

Closed: Monday 24 December 2018 - Thursday 3 January 2019.
Re-open: 9.00am, Thursday 3 January 2019.

Mercury Bay Service Centre

Closed: Monday 24 December - Wednesday 26 December 2018 and Tuesday 1 January - Wednesday 2 January 2019.
Open: 9.00am - 4.00pm,Thursday 27 December, Friday 28 December and 31 December 2018.
Re-open to normal business hours: 8.30am, Thursday 3 January 2019.

Whangamata Service Centre

Closed: Monday 24 December - Wednesday 26 December 2018 and Tuesday 1 January - Wednesday 2 January 2019.
Open: 9.00am - 4.00pm,Thursday 27 December, Friday 28 December and 31 December 2018.
Re-open to normal business hours: 8.30am, Thursday 3 January 2019.

Thames, Tairua and Mercury Bay Library hours

Our District libraries (Thames, Tairua and Mercury Bay) hours will be:

  • Open Saturday 22 December, 9am - 12pm.
  • Closed Monday 24 December - Wednesday 26 December
  • Open Thursday 27 December and Friday 28 December, 9am - 4pm.
  • Open Saturday 29 December, 9am - 12pm.
  • Closed Monday 31 December - Wednesday 2 January 2019.
  • Re-open to normal business hours at 9.00am on Thursday 3 January 2019.

For more about our libraries see www.tcdc.govt.nz/libraries and follow them on Facebook.

Thames Centennial Pool

Closed public holidays. Open Monday - Friday, 6am - 8am and 11am - 6.30pm and Saturday - Sunday, 11am - 5pm. For more information see www.tcdc.govt.nz/swim.

Fly-tipping  

We take a hard line on the illegal dumping of rubbish (fly-tipping) in the Coromandel.  We monitor known dump sites and investigate any fly-tipping with a view to prosecuting the dumpers and recovering the costs of clean up. If you see illegal dumping please report it to us with any information to identify the offender. We will investigate, infringe or prosecute people who leave litter in a public place. Be a tidy Kiwi! Help keep the Coromandel beautiful.

Kerbside summer collections

Instead of fly-tipping your rubbish, use our pre-paid blue Council bags and put them out for kerbside collection. The blue rubbish bags can be bought at supermarkets, dairies and our Council offices. Please put them on the kerbside for collection, not hanging from trees or poles or in a cage or other container. Recyclables are also collected kerbside: Glass goes in the green crate and paper, plastics, tins and cardboard go in the wheelie-bin. Because lots of people will be in the Coromandel over the coming weeks enjoying our slice of paradise, we've got extra Kerbside rubbish and recycling collections beginning Wednesday 26 December, Boxing Day until early February. We will be posting regular updates and reminders on our Facebook page.

If you miss the collection day, blue bags and recycling can be dropped off at our Refuse Transfer Stations (RTS) free of charge. RTS locations and hours are at www.tcdc.govt.nz/rts. Several of our RTSs have 24/7 after-hours drop-off facilities and we have several portable rubbish compactors that can take an ordinary-sized rubbish bag (the size of our blue Council bags) for a $2 coin. Check their locations at www.tcdc.govt.nz/rubbishcompactors.

Pop into one of our council offices for a copy of the Kerbside schedule for your area, check out our Coromandel Magazine 2018-19 (page168-169) or our website for further details www.tcdc.govt.nz/kerbside.

To avoid birds/animals getting into your rubbish, buy a gullinator https://www.tcdc.govt.nz/gullinator

Refuse Transfer Stations

If you miss your rubbish collection or leave town before collection day, our transfer stations will accept your official blue bags and recycling for free. Our summer Refuse Transfer Station hours begin Monday 17 December 2018 and continue until Sunday 24 February 2019. RTS locations and hours can be found at www.tcdc.govt.nz/rts.

Compactors

We have transportable rubbish compactors in some parts of the district where we get increased visitor numbers. Check their locations at www.tcdc.govt.nz/rubbishcompactors.   

Dogs 

Most of our beaches have summer restrictions - dogs may be prohibited or only allowed on the beach during certain times, usually before 9am and after 6pm. These restrictions are not only to keep dogs off beaches when there are a lot of people, but to protect important bird habitat areas during their summer breeding time. Please watch for signs at beach access ways.

Please don't let your dog roam in the bush and keep it contained at night. There have been too many of our precious kiwi killed recently by dogs. Kiwi aversion training is available. Check the Kiwi for Kiwis website and search "avoidance" for training sessions in your area: www.kiwiforkiwis.org.

  • In specified areas, dogs may be exercised off lead, but owners must have control at all times.
  • Dogs must not enter areas sign-posted as bird nesting areas.
  • Owners must remove dog droppings.
  • All dogs aged over 3 months must wear a current registration tag.
  • When walking your dog around our roads and town centres you must keep your dog on a leash.
  • Avoid strenuous activity with your dog during extremely hot periods of the day.
  • Make sure there is plenty of fresh water and shade available.
  • Never leave your dog unattended in direct sunlight or in a closed vehicle. This can cause heat stroke and possibly death.
  • Dogs can be sunburned just like humans. White and light coloured dogs are especially sensitive. Apply pet sunscreen on the ears and nose 30 minutes before going out in the sun. If your dog stays outside every day, apply sunscreen daily.
  • Be careful not to let your dog spend too much time on hot sand or asphalt. Dogs can burn their pads easily.

For more information see www.tcdc.govt.nz/dogs or call and ask us, 07 868 0200.

Horses

Here are a few things to remember when taking your horse down to the beach for some fun:

  • You can ride your horse into, on or over a public place (including beaches) if it is safe to do so and you aren’t causing a nuisance to other users. A crowded beach in the height of summer isn’t the best time for a canter - exercise your horse in a less-crowded area, please.
  • Share the space and remember not everyone loves your horse as much as you do, give other people room and consider using the beach when there are fewer people about.
  • Make sure that you have control of your horse at all times.
  • Pick up any ‘deposits’ your horse might make, dog owners have to do it, so do you.
  • Obey the road rules – if you are taking your horse on the road to get to the beach, you will need to obey the rules of the road. This will ensure your and your horse’s safety as well as that of other road users.
  • There are some reserves where horses aren't allowed, so please be on the look out for the 'No Horses' signs.

For more information see our Activities in Public Places Bylaw.

Alcohol Bans in Public Places

Our Council has adopted the new Alcohol Control Bylaw, which takes effect from 18 December 2018. It consists of year-round, 24/7 town centre alcohol bans, as well as Christmas/New Year and long weekend alcohol bans on many of our beaches and seaside reserves. Check the maps showing the alcohol ban areas and dates: www.tcdc.govt.nz/alcoholcontrol.

You must not consume or take alcohol into any public place where an alcohol ban is in force.

Fire Bans/Permits

Our Council no longer issues fire permits, Fire and Emergency New Zealand does. Go to their website www.checkitsalright.nz if you wish to apply for afire permit.

A total fire ban applies in the Coromandel from 20 Dec to 8 Feb. It may be extended if weather conditions dictate.

The ban includes: open fires in public places, beaches, public conservation land (DOC), and on private property. Fires include: traditional cooking fires, bonfires, solid-fuelled BBQs, braziers, fireworks, Chinese lanterns, and any incinerators that have not been pre-approved by a warranted fire officer.

Noise Control

It is important that you consider neighbours when making any noise. Noise must not interfere with the peace, comfort and convenience of any person. If any noise is considered excessive by a Noise Control Officer then a notice to cease the noise may be served. A notice to cease the noise is valid for 72 hours. If the notice is not complied with then a Noise Control Officer and the police may enter any property and dwelling to seize any equipment used to create the noise. Call our 24/7 Customer Service number 07 868 0200 if you have a noise complaint. www.tcdc.govt.nz/noise

Freedom Camping in Public Places

If you’re camping on Council land, your vehicle must be certified as self-contained by the New Zealand Motor Caravan Association, check their website www.nzmca.org.nz for details. Freedom camping is prohibited in some specific areas or restricted to designated zones in our district - both are clearly sign-posted.

If you intend to camp or stay overnight on a reserve or in a public place and your vehicle is not certified as self-contained, please look for a commercial or Department of Conservation campground. There is a $200 instant fine for offending on Council land. See www.tcdc.govt.nz/camping.

Boat ramps, harbours and wharfs

Boating is an important leisure and commercial activity on the Coromandel. Find out about boat ramps and wharves, where they are located, the costs to use them and some of the rules here. www.tcdc.govt.nz/boatramps

Water

We’re surrounded by water on the Coromandel. It’s easy to think of it as a free resource that will never run out. But the population in some of our communities multiplies 10-fold in summer and if we are smart about our water use we can delay costly new infrastructure. There are other good reasons to be smart about your water use. See www.tcdc.govt.nz/water for more information including water restrictions and water conservation tips.

Wastewater

If you haven't been to your property for some time and find wastewater isn't getting cleared away quick enough, it could be due to root intrusion around the pipes. Take a look to see if any plants or weeds need to be cleared on your property. We can come and clear the pipes, but the householder will receive a bill for this service if it is on the property. 

Stormwater Care

Don’t put anything down a stormwater drain that you would not want to drink or swim in. 

Stormwater grates are only supposed to drain rain. If any pollutants get into our stormwater they will also end up untreated in our waterways.

Do not:

  • tip unwanted chemicals such as paint for example down the drain 
  • wash your car out on the road
  • let your swimming pool water run into stormwater drains
  • store chemicals outside where they could leak and be washed into a drain.
  • use the gutter as a litter bin 

For more information see www.tcdc.govt.nz/water.

Swimming safely through summer

Surf lifesaving patrols

The warmer weather attracts large numbers of beachgoers in our District and we are thankful for Surf Life Saving New Zealand (SLSNZ) lifeguards to patrolling our beaches. www.surflifesaving.org.nz/

Wharf wardens (Whangamata)

The wharf wardens in Whangamata will be operating over the Christmas/New Year holiday and through the peak summer season. They manage and maintain activities at the wharf (wharf jumping/diving, fishing, mooring, charter operations) by ensuring the respective interest groups undertake their activity in the designated areas in a safe and enjoyable environment.

Building and Planning Consent Christmas processing times

Both the Building Act 2004 and the Resource Management Act 1991 stop the statutory processing clock over Christmas and New Year.

The period beginning 20 December and ending with the close of 10 January is excluded from the 20 working day time-frame which means that during these dates the processing clock stops.

Therefore any Resource or Building Consent submitted on or after Thursday 20 December 2018 will not be processed until Friday 11 January 2019 due to the Christmas/ New Year break.

So if you are thinking about submitting a building or resource consent get in touch with our customer team here to talk over any lodgement criteria and to avoid disappointments.

LIM (Land information Memorandum) Requests 

There may also be delays in the processing of LIM requests between 24 December 2018 and 15 January 2019.

This is due to the observation of non-statutory working days in accordance with the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987. 

If you would like a LIM request processed before Christmas you will need to apply for an Urgent LIM before 19 December 2018.

Note: There is an extra charge for an Urgent LIM. www.tcdc.govt.nz/lims

Roading

State Highways

We encourage you to check NZTA's website before you travel for the latest information about road closures, delays or work underway. You can also use their journey-planning website www.onthemove.govt.nz to plan the best route for your journey, taking into account known issues and traffic on state highways.

Follow NZTA Facebook and Twitter for further updates.

You can also call 0800 4 HIGHWAYS (0800 44 44 49) to speak to the call centre team who can provide traffic and travel information.

Council roads

  • In drier weather on unsealed roads like The 309, Tapu-Coroglen and Kennedy Bay roads, drivers may experience some dust nuisance and corrugation/rutting - so please drive to the conditions.

Any updates on the status of our Council's local roads will be posted on our website, Facebook page and via our email newsletters. 

Hahei parking and the Cathedral Cove park and ride service

At the Council meeting on 30 October 2018, our Councillors voted to amend the Parking Control Bylaw with respect to parking in Hahei. The changes will take effect from 20 December 2018 and will:

  • Make the car parks outside the Hahei store 60-minute timed parking;
  • Make the car parks on Hahei Beach Rd outside the store a stop for the Cathedral Cove bus service between 1 October and 30 April and 60-minute timed parking the rest of the year;
  • Create a drop-off only zone at the beach-front end of Hahei Beach Rd;
  • And, create two mobility car parks directly opposite the beach access. 

These amendments to the bylaw were made after discussions with the Hahei Residents and Ratepayers Association and a public feedback process.

The popular Cathedral Cove park and ride shuttle will be operating over the summer holiday season in Hahei. For the safety of other road users and locals living along Grange Road and neighbouring streets, visitors are strongly urged to use the Hahei Visitor Car Park at the entrance to the village. Click here for more information. The Grange Rd car park is drop-off only from 1 October to 30 April every year (except for the mobility car parks) and freedom camping is not allowed there.

Hannaford's Wharf

Parking wardens will also be assisting at Hannaford's Wharf, Coromandel Town.

Thames Connector public bus service

Thames Connector provides low-cost transport Monday - Friday to convenient locations in the Thames town centre between Tararu and Parawai. Click here for more information.

Road Safety information

The Coromandel has the most awesome coastal roads in New Zealand - but please take care.

Sadly, the crash rate on the Coromandel Loop is too high, so a new road safety campaign – 'Stay Alive On 25' – has been designed to try to prevent serious injury and fatal crashes on this highway. Click here to read more.

For tips on getting around the Coromandel safely, see www.tcdc.govt.nz/roadsafety.

Vehicles on Reserves and Beaches

We actively discourage, and in some areas prohibit, vehicles from beaches and reserves. Beaches should only be accessed in a vehicle to launch or retrieve a watercraft and only at designated locations. Please use common sense: vehicles and busy beaches don’t mix. Also, check our Reserve Management Plans for vehicle restrictions on specific beaches and reserves: www.tcdc.govt.nz/rmps

Vehicles and trailers should not park on any beach. Vehicles must not damage any vegetation or be used in a manner considered to be dangerous or inconsiderate to pedestrians.

“Vehicle” shall include any conveyance equipped with wheels, rollers or tracks.

Drones

Civil Aviation Authority regulations require that landowners give permission before unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), including drones, are flown over their property - this includes Council land. Flying UAVs over Council land, such as reserves, is generally permitted so long as the operator complies with the guidelines on our website at www.tcdc.govt.nz/drones; however, please be aware of UAV regulations around aerodromes, as most of our towns are within 4km of an aerodrome (www.airshare.co.nz).

Events

The Coromandel region is host to numerous events throughout the year and there's always something to do for the whole family.

Sign up for our events newsletter www.tcdc.govt.nz/subscribe and follow us on Facebook to stay up to date with the latest events. You can also check out our events guide in Our Coromandel Magazine 2018/19 (page 93 - 103) or see our weekly 'What's on in the Coromandel' www.tcdc.govt.nz/news.

For more about events including registering your own event click here.

You can hire one of our parks or reserves for weddings or other functions. Choose your intended location and fill in the application form on our web page www.tcdc.govt.nz/concessions.

Safer Coromandel & Plan B4 U Party 

The Coromandel is a guaranteed good time; however disorderly behaviour will not be tolerated. So follow the rules, plan before you party and look after your friends and family. Check out www.facebook.com/SaferCoromandel for more tips on keeping safe this summer.

Absentee Whangamata property owner? Help us stamp out new breed of 'freedom camper'

Visitors who trespass onto private property when accommodation is tight are being targeted in an initiative this summer. Over the summer holiday period and especially when events have been held in Whangamata, Police have had to remove a number of people who were camping on private property without the owners’ knowledge or permission.

In a bid to quickly stamp out the unwelcome visitors, we're asking our absentee ratepayers in Whangamata who will not be staying or letting their place out over the peak summer period, 21 December 2018 - 6 January 2019 to email us at customer.services@tcdc.govt.nz, with contact details, the physical property address, and a confirmation that no one is permitted to be on the property. 

Civil Defence - Be prepared

In New Zealand, we are constantly exposed to the risk of disaster. It is important that we understand these risks and there impact. However, there are measures we can all take to reduce the impact of disasters and be better prepared to recover quickly. See www.civildefence.govt.nz/ for up to date information about staying informed and being prepared for an emergency and familiarise yourself with our community guides to emergencies at www.tcdc.govt.nz/tvcd.  

For more information sign up to our e-newsletters here (www.tcdc.govt.nz/subscribe), follow us on Facebook and Twitter. Alerts for the Coromandel (weather warnings, road closures etc.) can be found on our homepage www.tcdc.govt.nz.

For more information about visiting the Coromandel visit www.thecoromandel.com.