Board fights to keep paths safe

Matamata Chronicle - - Front Page - By HARKAN­WAL SINGH

Mata­mata Com­mu­nity Board is fight­ing to give re­tail­ers in the town cen­tre a voice against skate­board­ing and cy­cling on foot­paths.

In a meet­ing on June 13, the board de­cided to fol­low up on the cost of signs and sten­cilling. It also de­cided to re­quest coun­cil sup­port to re­solve the is­sue.

Mata­mata Com­mu­nity Board chair­man Daryl An­der­son said: ‘‘We be­lieve that the prob­lem is not go­ing away and we need to give some teeth to the re­tail­ers to point to the kids that you can­not ride here.’’

The board had pre­vi­ously raised the is­sue two years ago. At the time, Mata­mata-Pi­ako District Coun­cil had said it would cost too much to make sten­cils. ‘‘ We didn’t agree with the coun­cil’s pric­ing that came through so we ac­tu­ally got back on it now and asked for fresh pric­ing be­cause they came up with some silly price for sten­cils,’’ Mr An­der­son said.

Mata­mata-Pi­ako District Coun­cil is in­ves­ti­gat­ing other sig­nage op­tions and associated costs. If young peo­ple are caught us­ing skate­boards on foot­paths, then ac­cord­ing to the coun­cil, the skate­boards can be con­fis­cated.

It is an of­fence to ride a skat­ing de­vice on a foot­path in a man­ner that en­dan­gers any per­son or prop­erty, ac­cord­ing to Pub­lic Safety By­law 2008.

Con­sta­ble Bruce War­ren­der from Mata­mata Po­lice said if any­thing was brought to their at­ten­tion then based on the time, place and cir­cum­stance the po­lice would take ac­tion. ‘‘If some­one is skate­board­ing in a way that is po­ten­tially un­safe then we def­i­nitely take ac­tion.’’

The board was adamant that some­thing must be done be­fore there was a dan­ger­ous ac­ci­dent.

‘‘We are go­ing to fight for a bet­ter pric­ing, get it in the bud­get and get it on the foot­paths,’’ Mr An­der­son said.

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