Waihi Leader - - News - By TR­ISH COATES

The is­sue was raised by a for­mer dog ranger Mike Hickey at the meet­ing. The re­port in­di­cated that the level of non­com­pli­ance re­gard­ing free­dom camp­ing, dog pa­trol and park­ing was less than the pre­vi­ous year. He said that the pub­lic have been com­plain­ing about the lack of ef­fec­tive ser­vices for some time.

The need for a lo­cal ranger was raised by the Board, but Western Bay of Plenty Dis­trict Coun­cil does not sup­port the op­tion, say­ing that the costs of train­ing, a uni­form, a phone and salary for four hours a day would amount to around $10-15,000 a year. No ap­pli­ca­tion for the job was ad­ver­tised in any of the lo­cal news­pa­pers. As an op­tion, Coun­cil has sug­gested hav­ing some lo­cals vol­un­teers in­stead. Their role would be to pro­vide in­for­ma­tion on where to ex­er­cise dogs and what are the re­stric­tions in place.

Dog con­trol of­fi­cers said that their task is dif­fi­cult as peo­ple run away when they see the beach con­trol of­fi­cer.

■ Other com­plaints were made about of­fi­cers is­su­ing park­ing in­fringe­ments. One com­pli­ant came from a Coun­cil con­trac­tor who said he parked partly on a yel­low line to clean up bro­ken glass bot­tles on the round­about and re­ceived a ticket for this.

The com­mu­nity has also asked for more sig­nage and bet­ter mon­i­tor­ing for the next sum­mer pe­riod.

Craig Mc­Far­lane re­ported that the trust has to re­think their in­volve­ment the new med­i­cal cen­tre project in Waihi Beach be­cause St John is now hav­ing their own sep­a­rate build­ing. Mean­while, Pri­mary Health Care Ltd has re­newed the lease on the cur­rent prop­erty for an­other two years.

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