Our weekly wrap-up: Weather alert, voting update, Community Service Awards, aquatic and sports facilities, boat ramp work and road alerts, plus more 30 September 2022 Welcome to the weekly wrap-up of our latest Council project news, important dates and information about what's happening in our district. Severe weather warning from 3am Saturday Bad weather over the next two days could make driving hazardous with the increased traffic volumes on our roads this weekend at the start of the school holidays. Before you travel, check road conditions with Waka Kotahi, the weather with MetService and for any updates on our Facebook page. There will most likely be surface flooding, slips and debris across roads until the storm passes on Sunday morning. Take great care and if at all possible delay your journey until Sunday. Don’t delay in voting Voting in our local elections has been off to a slow start compared to previous elections. As of Thursday 29 September, 4,600 votes had been cast – that’s 17.7 per cent of registered voters. At the same stage of voting in 2019, 21.3 per cent had voted and in 2016 25.6 per cent had voted. Voters in the Tairua-Pāuanui Community Board area are leading the charge with 24.8 per cent having cast their ballots. Whangamatā – 18 per cent Mercury Bay – 16.9 per cent Coromandel-Colville – 16.7 per cent Thames – 16.3 per cent “Don’t delay,” says our Mayor Sandra Goudie, who after two terms as Mayor is stepping back from elected service. “Voting is the single most effective way you have to shape who represents you at the Council table and on our Community Boards. In New Zealand, we’re fortunate to have many other avenues to get involved in local democracy: providing feedback during consultations on budget-setting exercises such as the Long Term Plan and during reviews of bylaws and policies. You can also talk to your elected members, but you can only choose who represents you once every three years – in the local elections. Don’t miss this opportunity.” Voting for our next Mayor, Councillors and Community Boards for the next three-year term closes at noon sharp on 8 October. The full list of candidates, the profiles they provided and their contact details are on our website at tcdc.govt.nz/nominations. Voting packs were posted two weeks ago to registered voters. Votes can be dropped off at ballot boxes in all our Council offices or they can be posted, but make sure you post it by Tuesday 4 October to allow time for delivery. Didn’t get your voting pack? Make sure you’re enrolled to vote at vote.nz then come into one of our Council service centres to ask for a Special Vote. Own a property on the Coromandel but don’t live here? You may be able to vote here too. Fill out the Ratepayer Electoral Form on our website then come in to one of our Council service centres to ask for a Special Vote. tcdc.govt.nz/elections Thames Sports and Aquatic Facilities upgrade New aquatic and sports facilities in the Thames area have moved a step closer with the recommendation by Thames Community Board on 28 September to proceed with a feasibility study to look at criteria and possible locations for a new pool and sports fields. The progression to the feasibility study then needs to be approved by the full Council. Both the Centennial Pool and Rhodes Park sports facilities are due for an upgrade because of ageing infrastructure, the pool’s siting on a urupā (burial ground) and regular flooding on the sports fields. The feasibility study is being conducted after extensive public consultation with sports clubs and leaders, Ngāti Maru representatives and a public survey in June 2022 to ascertain community needs and views. Community Service Awards Whangamatā Congratulations to the Whangamatā recipients of our Community Service Awards: Judy and John Hares and Ralph Pitcher. All three were thanked for longstanding service to the community in the volunteer sector. Outgoing Community Board members were also acknowledged for their contributions to community: Board Chair Ken Coulam and Board Members Kay Baker and Tamzin Letele (via video). Photo L-R: Mayor Sandra Goudie; Whangamatā Community Board Deputy Chair Dave Ryan; Judy and John Hares (recipients); South Eastern Ward Councillor Gary Gotlieb; – behind John Hares Community Service Awards Thames Four individuals with a long history of community contribution to Thames were honoured this week with the presentation of Community Service Awards by Thames Community Board. They were [photos L-R]: Althea Barker, Cara Penney, outgoing Board Chair Strat Peters and Board Member Sheryll FitzPatrick. Their decades of selfless service and commitment to leaving the locality in a better place were highlighted. Community Service Awards Tairua-Pāuanui Volunteers in the Tairua-Pāuanui area were celebrated at today's Community Board meeting: Diane Bruce (Board Chair Warwick Brooks accepted on her behalf) and Tony Jacobs and outgoing Board member Barry Swindles were acknowledged for their work in the community. Boat ramp closures Paku Boat Ramp closed until 21 October Paku Boat Ramp Area beside Tairua Marina will be temporarily closed from Thursday 29 September through to approximately 21 October for construction works. The beach launching area 30m further along The Esplanade is still free and Tairua Wharf boat ramp is also open (fees apply). Wyuna Bay Coastal Retaining Wall Repairs Repair works on a damaged retaining wall at the end of Wyuna Bay Rd is due to start on Monday 3 October, lasting 12 days (weather permitting). To undertake the works in a safe and timely manner we will need to close the southern boat ramp at the end of Wyuna Bay Rd. The closure is expected to remain in place throughout the duration of works. The northern boat ramp will remain open. Tairua skatepark design work progressing well Our Council is working with skatepark design firm Acid NZ and Veros, contracted to manage the design and build phase of the project, to develop the skatepark design. We are taking into account stormwater, civil engineering, acoustic engineering, surveying, and landscape architecture to ensure the skatepark meets the needs of skaters, neighbours and other park users. We are working with the Skatepark User Group and other community groups that regularly use Cory Park Domain to refine the design concept. This includes the Tairua Rugby and Sports Club and Fire and Emergency New Zealand. Once a draft concept design is complete, we will work with the Community Design Reference Group to ensure the design meets Council’s requirements identified during the site selection process. This will happen in November. We will then be ready to finalise the design and start construction. Saturday marks Day of Older Persons This Saturday marks Probus Day which is celebrated annually on 1 October, acknowledging the United Nations’ Day of Older Persons, where we all highlight the important contributions that older people make to society. With 140 Probus Clubs and 12,000 members across New Zealand, Probus provides retirees and semi-retirees with the opportunity to join their local club, make new friends, participate in a variety of activities, and stay physically active. Throughout the month of October, thousands of Probus members across New Zealand will be celebrating Probus Day with a range of events planned including luncheons, morning teas, BBQs, picnics and so much more. Fund for Waitangi Day commemorations Have an idea of an event that can bring shared cultures together locally to celebrate Aotearoa New Zealand and the signing of Te Tiriti o Waitangi / the Treaty of Waitangi? Check out this fund that offers amounts up to $300,000 in total. It’s open from now until 26 October 2022. Road alerts Whenuakite SH25 work for two weeks Waka Kotahi advise that milling and resurfacing works are due to begin next Monday on 3 October 2022 on SH25 between Boat Harbour Road and Pumpkin Hill. This work is expected to take about 2 weeks. Traffic management will be set up with Stop/Stop Closure in place by 8am until 5pm each day. Traffic will be held on 'stop' for up to 15 minutes. Temporary speed limits will be in place during the night. If the works are delayed due to weather an updated notification will be provided. Check your journey route here. Sheriff Block & Whitianga Marina work Work on upgrading the Block and Marina is getting underway this week, affecting traffic build-up in the area. Trucking movements of rock from the Whitianga Marina will commence by Herons on Monday 3 October (or earlier). Around 20 truckloads are expected to arrive at the Moewai Road Cleanfill Site per day via Moewai Road. This will gradually increase to approximately 104 loads per 10-hour shift by late October 2022 for sand, gravel and the balance of the rock. Heron Construction will use three trucks in combination and, subject to the weather, should complete all of the movement of materials by mid December. Hoppers will start moving fill to the Sheriff Block by mid-November at approximately 90 trucks per day both ways. Access to the Sheriff Block site will be via Moewai Road and Abrahamson Drive(via North & South entrances). We ask for your patience while we undertake this necessary work to improve the marina. Other work Progress on Whangamatā Public Toilet Upgrades The Island View toilets are nearing completion. Construction work on the new Martyn Road toilets will start in early October, followed by the Beach Road toilets in late October. The installation of three public toilets was affected by COVID-related delays, however contractors are now on track to complete the work this spring. Meetings and Community Board updates Whangamatā Community Board The Board requested changes to the design of the new Island View Reserve car park, to reflect community feedback. The proposed southern exit from the car park will now be removed from the design. Thames Community Board The Board decided to progress the plans for a new aquatic facility and sports hub from the needs assessment phase to feasibility study (see above for details). Tairua-Pāuanui Community Board The Board recommended to Council that a stockpile of red chip seal be kept in order for patching and reinstatement of Pāuanui's distinctive red road seal. Residents had complained that utilities providers were patching the red roads with black seal after their works. The cost will be met through $2.01 per local ratepayer from the 2023/24 year and a one-off capital cost of $22,000 from Tairua-Pāuanui 2022/23 retained earnings. Community Board Grants All our Boards have now decided on their allocations for Community Grant funds. Applicants will be notified and the allocations will be published on our website early next week: tcdc.govt.nz/cbgrants Extraordinary Council Meeting Friday, 7 October 2022, 9am - 12pm Online via Microsoft Teams An Extraordinary Council meeting will take place to consider making a Freedom Camping Bylaw and associated matters. This meeting will be held online at 9am and there will not be a public forum. If you would like to observe the meeting please click on the link below: Join on your computer, mobile app or other device. Click here to join the meeting You can read the agendas here.