Summer Tips & Information

Summer on the Coromandel

Our Council Summer Office Hours

Our Council service centres will be closed on the public holidays (25 - 26 December 2017 and 1 - 2 January 2018). Our operating hours between Christmas and the New Year (27 - 29 December 2017) will be 9.00am - 4.00pm for all our offices except the Coromandel Town Service Centre, which will be closed.

General Enquiries

If you would like to provide general correspondence to Council, you can send us an email: customer.services@tcdc.govt.nz. (Please note that this email address is only monitored during office hours). Or, you can contact us on our 24-hour service line: 07 868 0200.

District Office – Thames

Closed: Monday 25 December - Tuesday 26 December 2017 and Monday 1 January - Tuesday 2 January 2018.
Open: 9.00am - 4.00pm, Wednesday 27 December - Friday 29 December 2017.
Re-open to normal business hours: 8.00am, Wednesday 3 January 2018.

Coromandel Service Centre

Closed: Monday 25 December 2017 - 3 January 2018.
Re-open: 9.00am, Wednesday 3 January 2018.

Mercury Bay Service Centre

Closed: Monday 25 December - Tuesday 26 December 2017 and Monday 1 January - Tuesday 2 January 2018.
Open: 9.00am - 4.00pm, Wednesday 27 December - Friday 29 December 2017.
Re-open to normal business hours: 8.30am, Wednesday 3 January 2018.

Whangamata Service Centre

Closed: Monday 25 December - Tuesday 26 December 2017 and Monday 1 January - Tuesday 2 January 2018.
Open: 9.00am - 4.00pm, Wednesday 27 December - Friday 29 December 2017.
Re-open to normal business hours: 8.30am, Wednesday 3 January 2018.

Thames, Tairua and Mercury Bay Library hours

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

  • Closed from Friday 22 December at 3pm
  • Open to reduced hours, 9.30am - 3.00pm, on Wednesday 27 December.
  • Open Thursday 28 December and Friday 29 December, 9.00am - 3.00pm.
  • Closed again from Saturday 30 December.
  • Re-open to normal business hours at 9.30am on Wednesday 3 January 2018.

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’re taking a hard line on the illegal dumping of rubbish (fly-tipping) in the Coromandel.  We are monitoring known dump sites and will make sure dumped rubbish is investigated and cleaned up. We all have our part to play and if you see illegal dumping please report it to Council with information to identify the offender. We will investigate, infringe or prosecute people who leave litter in a public or private place. Be a tidy Kiwi! Keep the Coromandel beautiful.

Kerbside summer collections

Instead of fly-tipping your rubbish, use our blue Council bags and set them out for kerbside collection. The blue rubbish bags can be bought at supermarkets, dairies and our Council offices. 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 Tuesday 26 December, Boxing Day until early February. (There will be a one-off extra collection of wheelie-bins for Pauanui and Tairua on Saturday 23 December). We will be posting regular updates and reminders on our Facebook page.

Pop into one of our council offices for a copy of the schedule for your area, check out our Coromandel Magazine (page164-165) 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, transfer stations will accept your official blue bags and recycling for free. Our summer Refuse Transfer Station hours begin Monday 18 December 2017 and continue until Sunday 25 February 2018. 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. Currently on-site at the Kuaotunu boat ramp and at Onemana Beach. Others will be brought in where required over summer www.tcdc.govt.nz/compactors  

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.

  • 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 probably isn’t the best time for a canter.
  • 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

Throughout our District, alcohol bans will be in force during holiday periods, including long weekends. These are strictly enforced by the police and you may be instantly fined $250 or arrested if you breach an alcohol ban in a public place.

You must not consume or take alcohol into any public place while alcohol bans are in force. www.tcdc.govt.nz/liquorbans 

Fire Ban

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.

Click here for our latest update or see www.tcdc.govt.nz/fire for more information.

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 on the occupiers of the offending property. A notice to cease the noise is valid for 72 hours. If any occupier does not comply with the notice then a Noise Control Officer and the police may enter any property and dwelling to seize any equipment used to create the noise. www.tcdc.govt.nz/nois

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 - 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. https://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.

Drinking water

We are in the process of introducing chlorination to the water network at Hahei and Pauanui to ensure maximum protection of our supplies.  You may notice a difference in taste and odour with this change. Should any consumers be particularly sensitive to the slight chlorine odour a jug of water can be left in the fridge for several hours and the smell will dissipate. Find out more about chlorination of these supplies here.

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

With the summer swimming season about to kick off we are working with Waikato Regional Council again this year to help beach users know about water quality levels.

Between November and March, go to www.waikatoregion.govt.nz/coastalresults to check what the latest results are for the targeted beaches. Click here for more information (https://www.tcdc.govt.nz/Your-Council/News-and-Media/News-and-Public-Notices/News-Articles/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. http://www.surflifesaving.org.nz/

Wharf wardens (Whangamata)

The Wharf wardens in Whangamata will be operating from 26 December 2017 - 6 February 2018. 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

If you submit a resource or building consent after Wednesday 20 December 2017 it won't be processed until Wednesday 10 January 2018 due to the Christmas/ New Year break.

This is because under the Resource Management Act 1991 and the Building Act 2004 the statutory processing clock stops over Christmas and New Year.

The period between 20 December 2017 and 10 January 2018 is excluded from the 20 working day time-frame.

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 25 December 2017 and 15 January 2018.

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 between now and Christmas you will need to apply for an Urgent LIM before 20 December 2017.

Note: There is an extra charge for an Urgent LIM. https://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.

District roads

  • Over the peak summer period some of our roads will be down to single lanes due to repairs; Black Jack Rd, Optio and Colville Rd, north of Oamaru Bay.
  • 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.
  • Bluff Rd between Matarangi and Rings Beach will be open for public use (walkers and cyclists, no vehicles) by Christmas following rock blasting and remedial work.

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

Temporary roundabouts

The NZ Transport Agency is trialling a new approach to reduce holiday traffic congestion in Paeroa and Kopu. Temporary roundabouts have been installed at the intersections of State Highway 2 and State Highway 26 at Paeroa and State Highway 26 and State Highway 25A at Kopu. Click here for more information.

Cathedral Cove park and ride

The popular Cathedral Cove park and ride shuttle will be operating over the busy 2017/18 summer holiday season, along with longer opening hours at the Hahei Visitor car park. 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. Click here for more information.

Hannaford's Wharf

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

Thames Connector bus service trial

The six-month trial of our public bus service began at the start of December, providing low-cost transport to convenient locations in the Thames town centre between Tararu and Parawai. Click here for more information.

Changes to parking

There have been some changes made to our Parking Bylaw you need to note. See www.tcdc.govt.nz/parkingchanges for details.

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

Vehicles are prohibited from any area not set aside for the driving or parking of vehicles. This may include any beach or reserve. Beaches may only be accessed for the launching or retrieving of a watercraft and only at designated locations. Vehicles and trailers must 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

New rules introduced by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) requiring council approval to be obtained to operate Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) over council land came into effect on 1 August 2015. Flying of UAVs over TCDC land is permitted so long as the flyer complies with the guidelines found here.

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 (page 76 - 85) 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, 23 December 2017 - 8 January 2018 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 https://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.