You may have heard already … Council have made a significant announcement:
The Dog Control Bylaw and Policy proposal is being sent BACK to the Bay of Islands-Whangaroa Community Board for consideration. The Community Boards are able to make recommendations whether there should be amendments to the document and/or amendments to the process. How does this affect us?
1. All of the letters you have sent to Councillors are redundant for now!!!! The Councillors will not be having a say on this until the Strategy Committee meeting on 30th August i.e. AFTER the Community Boards have had their say. So you have to send, or resend your views to the Community Board members urgently. You can approach all of them, or a particular one you may already know. Could you please cc Kelly Stratford as she has become the hub of communication between us and the council and is loyally compiling everything we send her and ensuring it is passed on to other members.
2. The Community Board meeting is at 10am Monday 14th August at Waipapa Hall. Yes, this Monday – so get writing SOON! The meeting is open for the public to attend AND you may speak at the meeting if you wish to. If you are considering this but are not sure how to go about it, you are welcome to phone or email Kelly Stratford or myself for more info.
3. Predictably, the policy writers have CHANGED the draft bylaw & policy – the one being presented to the Community Board has differences to the one we have been critiquing. I encourage you to go through it all again! You may feel strongly about most of it, or just one aspect. Some differences I have noted so far (still a lot of studying to be done!):
– The limit of two dogs per household has been broadened to make a lot of areas only one dog per household, including Russell and other rural areas. Still no provision for applying to exceed that.
– Sullivans Beach (coast between Te Haumi and Paihia) nominated to be an Exercise Zone ie off leash at all times. Something to smile about and I know this is only because of the effort people went to last summer to make a case for this. Still, it is better-sweet with the other opportunities they have simultaneously deprived us of.
– The track between Te Haumi and Opua has been added as ON LEASH AT ALL TIMES. (It is presently off leash.)
I apologise for not being familiar with everyone’s patch of turf, or circumstances, so PLEASE SPEAK UP for yourselves AND people you know who may need support (e.g. elderly or shy folk).
We are all angry and upset, and it is OK to express that, however it will be most helpful if you can tell them precisely how the bylaw and policy negatively impacts on you and suggest solutions on how they can reverse that. You may also like to mention that you didn’t receive notification of the review last year (if you didn’t) and/or that the draft has been significantly and secretly changed since it was first presented for public feedback.
Link to the new draft/proposal:
(It’s in three parts – a discussion report, the bylaw and policy, a document showing the changes made to the last version.)
Link to the Community Board Members Contacts:
Kelly Stratford: Phone: 021 087 31120 email@example.com
Link to the announcement (media release):
Thanks to all who came to Opua Beach on Sunday. Sixty odd people and dogs – that’s 120 + individuals!!
Keep up the effort, everyone. It will pay off eventually. And please pass this email on.