Action needed in gulf
The Government has not been making the changes needed to introduce recreational fishing parks to the Hauraki Gulf, the Hauraki Gulf Forum says.
Re-elected Hauraki Gulf Forum chairman John Tregidga said the Hauraki Gulf’s water quality was deteriorating and fish numbers were declining.
Established in 2000 under the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park Act, the Hauraki Gulf Forum is an Auckland Council organisation that promotes enhancement and protection for the Hauraki Gulf.
In January 2016 the government announced plans under the Marine Protected Areas Act to create recreational fishing parks in the inner Hauraki Gulf and the Marlborough Sounds, and compensate commercial fishers for the loss of their catch in those areas.
A Hauraki Gulf recreational fishing park would ban commercial fishing from Leigh to Coromandel Town, extending out for 12 nautical miles.
But both the forum and the Government had been slow on establishing recreational fishing parks in the area, he said.
‘‘We haven’t been making the necessary changes and improvements in the Hauraki Gulf,’’ Tregidga said.
The public were nervous of the Marine Protected Areas Act but it needed to happen, Tregidga said.