Focus on the Land
Taking the first steps to tackling Wainui issues
Thursday, August 23, 2012
THE management of Wainui Beach is starting from scratch and the first step was last night’s meeting at Wainui Surf Life Saving Club.
Gisborne District Council representatives told the 35 people who attended that the first priority was to gather feedback about the proposed Wainui Beach Management Plan (WBMP).
How to tackle issues like the threat coastal erosion poses to homes, other coastal hazards, beach access and protection of Wainui Beach’s nationally-recognised surf breaks will be covered by the plan.
Councillor Brian Wilson chaired the 2 ½ -hour meeting and said the council was stepping right back and starting again with its review of the WBMP.
“Tonight is not about getting into the detail — there will be opportunities to talk about that later,” said Mr Wilson. “Tonight’s focus is on how to work together to produce it.
“The goal is to ensure we come up with a plan that is informed by views widely accepted within the Wainui/Okitu community.”
Council water utilities manager Kevin Strongman will be project manager.
The structure of the proposed new WBMP was detailed to the meeting by Sheryl Smail, who is part of the project team.
A working group of five to seven people would do the “grunt work” and report back to the Key Stakeholder Forum (KSF) every four to six weeks, she said.
The KSF would comprise representatives of groups such as the Wainui Coast Care Group. They would need to be committed for the length of the project and attend 80 percent of meetings. The forum would meet every month at key milestones, said Mrs Smail.
Members of the working group would be decided by the council in conjunction with the KSF.
A letter was sent to all Wainui ratepayers asking for interest in the working group.
Wainui residents would be kept informed of the WBMP process by e-mail if they registered their interest with the council.
Those who did not would be kept informed through the council website or the media.
Once the members of the working group had been chosen, they would meet over the next few months, said Mrs Smail. It was hoped that by the end of the year KSF representatives would have reached a point of comfort to make recommendations of what the strategies would be for the new WBMP.
From there it would be open to “broader input” before going back to the KSF who would then pass it on to the council for consideration around February or March of next year.
A final community and council decision would be made by May or June, said Mrs Smail.
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