A recent decision by the Auckland Regional Council (ARC) to approve a private mooring at Home Bay, Rakino, combined with its recently notified intention to process a consent application for the first private mooring in Woody Bay, places in jeopardy the public’s right to anchor unhindered in the Hauraki Gulf.
These applications highlight the continuing pursuit by individuals intent on converting public coastal recreational space for private preferential usage. It is imperative concerned boaties lodge their objections to the ARC before 12 June 09.
The ARC ‘Auckland Regional Plan – Coastal’ statutory document contains eight specific and prescriptive clauses that must be met before a mooring is approved outside designated mooring management areas; Woody Bay is not a mooring management area. The Gulf Anchorages Protection Society (GAPS) believes the current Woody Bay applicant fails to demonstrate compliance with most of the Regional Plan clauses.
A recent Environment Court decision involving moorings overruled and criticised the ARC. That may have been avoidable had the Council been better informed. GAPS encourage the public to assist the ARC. A first step is to make a submission. Points of note against this Woody Bay application are:-
• A mooring takes up 3500 sq metres of surface space (ARC figures) and restricts public access to the coastal marine area.
• Significant increases in boat numbers around the Gulf places a premium on coves like Woody Bay. Private moorings force visiting boats to occupy reduced spaces.
• Rakino Island is a unique cruising destination and provides one of the few suitable anchorages in this part of the Gulf during northerly and easterly weather patterns.
• In 2006 an ARC hearing found:- 'The prevalence of privately owned land on Rakino does not imply that the adjacent coastal marine area is prioritised for the use of those landowners. There is not an automatic property right for landowners over the adjacent coastal marine area.'
• On reversing the recent ARC mooring consent in a popular bay of high public amenity value, the Environment Court Judge found granting moorings in these types of bays '…so inconsistent with the regional policy, that it must be repugnant to it.'
• The application is a selfish and self serving attempt to address personal boating interests at the expense of the entire recreational boating public.
• The precedent setting nature of granting this Woody Bay application will extend across the entire ARC administered maritime region.
Save Woody Bay from moorings and you save the Hauraki Gulf !!
Please fill out the following submission form with your reasons and tick your wish to be heard at the hearing. Post to:
• Client Services, Auckland Regional Council, Private Bag 92 012, Auckland 1010.
• Mr C Ross, 48 Argyle Street, Herne Bay, Auckland 1011 (the applicant). This is an ARC requirement. To view and download a submission form http://www.sail-world.com/files/Rakino_Mooring_Submission.pdf
To see the submission made in support of the application click here?nid=57373
Submissions close at 4:30pm Friday 12th June 2009 – please act now.