Re­jigged by­law back to coun­cil


A much more per­mis­sive draft free­dom camp­ing by­law is likely to be sent out for pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion by the Taupo¯ Dis­trict Coun­cil.

The re-writ­ten draft by­law will be con­sid­ered by coun­cil­lors at an ex­tra­or­di­nary coun­cil meet­ing on Thurs­day Septem­ber 14.

The re­vised draft by­law per­mits only self-con­tained camper­vans to camp out within the Taupo¯ Dis­trict’s lo­cal au­thor­ity area.

The new pro­posal re­moves a con­tentious law that would have banned all camper­vans stay­ing overnight within 200 me­tres of the lake.

Driv­ers of so-called ‘‘slid­ing door camper­vans’’, which are not self-con­tained, could be li­able for a $200 in­fringe­ment if they stay parked up next to the lake or in town.

Non-self-con­tained vans will be per­mit­ted at des­ig­nated ar­eas, which in­clude Hi­pa­p­atua [Reid’s Farm], Man­gakino Re­cre­ation Re­serve, Whaka­maru Do­main and Whaka­maru Re­cre­ation Re­serve.

A report ac­com­pa­ny­ing the re­vised by­law pro­posal said res­i­dents’ main con­cerns were about ‘‘im­pacts on the en­vi­ron­ment and peo­ple’s health and safety from waste from campers’’, as well as ac­cess to lake­front ar­eas.

The report, au­thored by coun­cil’s se­nior pol­icy ad­vi­sor Jane Budge, said ban­ning slid­ing door vans from ar­eas with­out ad­e­quate rub­bish bins and pub­lic toi­lets should ad­dress waste con­cerns.

The Re­serve Act [1977] al­ready pro­hibits camp­ing on re­serves, so us­ing this act’s pro­vi­sions - and us­ing the ex­ist­ing Traf­fic By­law for roads around town - would man­age campers bet­ter than a by­law would, the report said.

The coun­cil’s first by­law pro­posal was sent out for pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion in Fe­bru­ary and April. The first pro­posal banned campers from the all pub­lic ar­eas in the Taupo¯ Dis­trict, with the ex­cep­tion of 15 sites.

More than 135 pub­lic sub­mis­sions on pro­posal came in, with around 80 per cent in op­po­si­tion.

Ac­cord­ing to Thurs­day’s meet­ing agenda, coun­cil­lors can vote to send the re-jigged by­law to pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion from Septem­ber 19 to Oc­to­ber 20, with a hear­ing on Novem­ber 13. Coun­cil­lors could make a de­ci­sion in midNovem­ber.

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