Board can­di­dates share views on Bay

The Leader (Tasman) - - OUT & ABOUT - NINA HINDMARSH

Free­dom camp­ing, hous­ing and proper rep­re­sen­ta­tion in coun­cil are some of the key Golden Bay is­sues the four com­mu­nity board by-elec­tion can­di­dates see fac­ing the area.

Deb­o­rah Rhodes lives near Colling­wood on a dairy farm with her hus­band and three chil­dren.

As a nurse, mother and farmer, Deb­o­rah said she saw many com­mu­nity is­sues wor­thy of ad­vo­cacy.

‘‘Hous­ing in the bay is dif­fi­cult,’’ she said.

‘‘For a lot of peo­ple, fam­i­lies and the el­derly, per­ma­nent and/ or long term sta­ble rentals fluc­tu­ate

‘‘The com­mu­nity board lacks power to progress the con­cerns of the com­mu­nity.’’

Aver­ille Grant

with sum­mer de­mands.’’

Care of the el­derly ei­ther in their homes or ac­cess to sup­ported res­i­den­tial care is scarce, Rhodes said.

‘‘Tourism on the in­crease dic­tates the need for good in­fra­struc­ture and re­quests from the Golden Bay com­mu­nity should be met.’’

She said among her strengths would be to ad­vo­cate for the lo­cal re­gion with an ‘‘ur­gent voice’’ to coun­cil.

Dy­lan Shaw is a builder and lives in Kotinga with his wife and two chil­dren.

He has a ‘‘strong de­sire’’ to see the en­vi­ron­ment in Takaka pre­served for fu­ture gen­er­a­tions and be­lieves in find­ing a bal­ance of tourism, farm­ing, and en­vi­ron­men­tal pro­tec­tion that works best for the com­mu­nity.

There was a ‘‘lack of en­gage­ment’’ from younger res­i­dents for lo­cal is­sues and pol­i­tics.

‘‘I be­lieve part of this is a re­sult of lack of trust and feel­ings of be­ing un­der-rep­re­sented by the TDC,’’ he said.

Bal­anc­ing Golden Bay’s two main in­come streams of farm­ing and tourism in a sus­tain­able way so that the neg­a­tive im­pact on the com­mu­nity and en­vi­ron­ment can be min­imised was high on his pri­or­ity list.’’

Aver­ille Grant is a fourth­gen­er­a­tion lo­cal, with a ‘‘deep un­der­stand­ing’’ of Golden Bay’s his­toric, cul­tural and scenic her­itage.

She is a com­mit­tee mem­ber of the Golden Bay A&P Show As­so­ci­a­tion and as a trustee for the Grand­stand Trust.

The key is­sues Grant sees fac­ing Golden Bay are a lack of per­ma­nent res­i­dents af­fect­ing year-round busi­ness sus­tain­abil­ity, and a lack of au­ton­omy for lo­cal de­ci­sions to be made by Golden Bay res­i­dents.

‘‘Our two coun­cil­lors must vote for the district rather than what our com­mu­nity wants,’’ she said.

‘‘The com­mu­nity board lacks power to progress the con­cerns of the com­mu­nity. Con­sul­ta­tion by TDC is of­ten per­func­tory at best.

‘‘Golden Bay’s aging pop­u­la­tion is twice the na­tional av­er­age, with a lack of young peo­ple stay­ing in the area to pro­vide care and ser­vices.

‘‘[There is a] need for a change of land use for ad­di­tional dwellings to help mit­i­gate [the] prob­lem.’’

Rod Barker said free­dom camp­ing was one of big­gest is­sues fac­ing Golden Bay.

‘‘Yet this prob­lem con­fronts many com­mu­ni­ties na­tion­wide. Causal­i­ties of this is­sue stem from na­tional strate­gies to in­crease tourism com­bined with in­suf­fi­cient plan­ning to deal with ob­vi­ous im­pacts.

‘‘For ex­am­ple, younger longterm vis­i­tors to New Zealand are able to pur­chase ve­hi­cles which are con­verted into makeshift campers,’’ he said.

‘‘Th­ese vis­i­tors then sell the ve­hi­cle on to new ar­rivals when they’re fin­ished. It’s a well es­tab­lished sys­tem.’’

He said cen­tral gov­ern­ment needed to reg­u­late the sale of ve­hi­cles to over­seas vis­i­tors so that only reg­is­tered self con­tained campers were avail­able for vis­i­tors want­ing this type of ex­pe­ri­ence.

Vot­ing for the Golden Bay Com­mu­nity Board by-elec­tion closes on Fe­bru­ary 17, 2018.

Deb­o­rah Rhodes

Dy­lan Shaw

Rod Barker

Aver­ille Grant

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