No Sinking Feeling for Harbour Care
Written by John Grant on July 20, 2022
Whangamata’s Harbour Care body will maintain its battle against mangrove proliferation of the town’s water ways.
At its annual general meeting last Saturday, retiring chairman Kerry Gibb told those present that the management of the mangroves must be better handled and with less impact on costs and the foreshore.
Gibb noted to members that while the Thames Coromandel District Council had provided financial support to the association during the past 12 months, there had been no funding support from the Waikato Regional Council.
Councillor Terry Walker represented TCDC at the meeting while Regional Council representative Dennis Tegg had apologised for not being able to attend.
Mayoral candidate John Freer, who also attended the meeting, said Whangamata Harbour Care looked after one of the regions key assets.
Freer said he is advocating a new way forward for council and if successful, Whangamata Harbour Care could be considered to take on the total management of the harbour foreshore.
He said it was surprising that the association was going to council for one-off grants – there should be an annual plan in place, with funding guaranteed, an assessment of that could be based on Whangamata harbour-based revenue.
Freer said since being formed in 1997, the association had battled almost endless bureaucracy, it had achieved considerable local support while its members also provided a significant knowledge base.
He said the association are an excellent example of a future community-council partnership.